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Democracy: Why is it important to vote?

Read our latest blog now on the British Value, Democracy, what is is and why it is important to vote. Read now.

All the British values are important, and Democracy will be at the forefront of the news over the next few months.

What is democracy?

The United Nations states that a democracy “provides an environment that respects human rights and fundamental freedoms, and in which the freely expressed will of people is exercised”

A democracy is a system whereby representatives are given the power to ‘govern’ or make decisions for the country on behalf of the people.

In short, the people choose a person to represent them and their beliefs and to make decisions for the country as part of parliament.

What is parliament?

Parliament is a group of elected people called MP’s (Member of Parliament) who are chosen by their constituents to speak for them in the houses of parliament, who collectively vote on policies.

What is an election?

An election usually occurs every 4 years and is when candidates representing different political parties go ‘head the head’ to be chosen to become the MP for their constituency. They are chosen to represent the people from that area in parliament and help make decisions on ‘running’ country. Each political party choses a leader and the person they would like to be their candidate for prime minister.  After the election period is over which happens on one day (except for postal votes) the political party with the most MP’s elected to parliament are declared the winners and have the right to govern the country and speak for the people. The political party’s leader becomes the UK’s Prime Minister and choses specific MPs to undertake other import roles such as Secretary of State for Education. Sometimes parliament can be ‘hung’ this means that it is a draw and the 2 drawing parties must discuss with the 3rd place to create a coalition (working together) or decide to have another election.

Why is it important to Vote?

Anyone aged 18 or over is eligible to vote in the UK except prisoners convicted of criminal offences and non-UK citizens, but they must register first. Voting is an important way to ensure that democracy is upheld in the UK. The people who become MP’s and form the government are making decisions on your behalf and by using your vote you have a say on who you would like to make those decisions.

If you feel strongly about a certain view a party has or a policy, you can use your vote to say you agree or disagree with it.

Another way to have your say if you do not agree with any of the parties you can ‘spoil’ your ballot paper by leaving it blank. This is a way to show you are interested in voting but do not support any of the political parties.

It is important to have your say and to show that having a democracy responds to the needs of the people and after all it is better to have your say than to not say anything at all.

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© 2021 KEITS Training Services Limited. All rights reserved. Registered in England. Registration Number: 3387664.