Don’t be an April-fool – RegistHER to Vote!

by Sophie Duder

Today on 1st April, RegistHERtoVote – an online action group – is launching our campaign with one very simple message: Don’t be an April-fool – RegistHER to Vote!

Register-postcard (1)

We’re doing this because as Harriet Harman has been so brilliantly active in pointing out 9.1 million women didn’t vote at the last election. That is a staggering number. It’s almost equivalent to the population of Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland just not turning up at the polls. Whilst that’s a scenario that might please Nigel Farage, it gives a sense of just how many people we are talking about.   Women are also 10% more likely to be undecided than men – 35% of us don’t know who we are going to vote for. So it’s the job of our party to convince those 9 million women who didn’t turn out in 2010 not just to vote – but to vote Labour.  We need to show the 35% of women who are undecided that Labour is the right choice.

We know there is no such thing as a women’s vote – women are not a homogenous group that will all vote the same way.   We won’t all vote the same way because we don’t all face the same problems or have the same ideology. But there is one aspect in which we are the same and it’s the reason behind our campaign. Across society women’s voices are not heard as often or as loudly as those of our male counterparts. As statistics repeatedly tell us – women are much less likely to be in leadership roles than our male counterparts.  We are less likely to be in the boardroom, to enter parliament, or to edit a national newspaper. Even in a profession like teaching where women make up nearly three quarters of the workforce, only 35% of head-teachers are women.

And that’s why I believe women should and will look to the Labour party when they cast their vote on May 7th.  Because we are a party made up of inspirational women – many of whom have kindly and generously supported our campaign.  Sarah Brown, Helen Hayes, Val Shawcross, Gloria de Piero, Stella Creasy, Stephanie Peacock, Jo Cox, Louise Haigh, Thangam Debbonaire and Amy Lamé – to name a few – have all helped us get our message out. They – along with so many other Labour women – show that we are a party in which women lead the way: their voices are heard.  Whether its through all women shortlists or LWN training – the message is clear. Women participate: they take part.  We want all women to use their voices on 7th May. It’s starts by filling in an online form.

Registration closes on 20th April and it is supposedly easier than ever. It’s all online – you don’t have to sign or post any forms. But as other campaigning groups like Hope Not Hate have pointed out – these changes mean that it’s very easy to drop off the register particularly if you are a student. Their research found that 82% of local authorities have seen numbers drop and this is particularly striking on university campuses. Take East Sussex University – last year there were 3,500 students registered on their campus – there are now just 377.

This will be one of the closest elections in living memory and we need to make sure as many people register as possible.  We’re using social media and working with women’s groups and networks to show how easy it is to register and why it matters. We need to love our vote so we don’t hate the result on May 8th!

So go online, check your registered and sign our pledge. Then tell your friends and make sure they are registered too.

Sophie Duder is a RegistHERtoVote activist and Account Director at Lodestone Communications. You can find out more at and follow the campaign on Twitter @registHERtoVote 

Tags: , , , ,

2 Responses to “Don’t be an April-fool – RegistHER to Vote!”

  1. Robert says:

    I’m disabled so registering to vote would be a waste of time voting for a party would be a waste of time, but I’ve got a few days to go yet 19 days in fact so I may change my mind, but after Reeves statement I may vote Greens.

  2. robert's conscience says:

    Well Robert you go ahead and waste your vote if listening and beleiving the right wing press’ s selective out of context report is how you are going to justify aloowing another tory government in to screw you over for another 5 years

Leave a Reply