You Should Vote.

votesHello! The UK general elections take place next Thursday. I know a lot of people in my life who aren’t sure who to vote for, or even if it’s worth voting, so I thought I’d tell you a bit about my motivations. One of the crowning achievements of living in a developed, democratic country is that we can vote, and our votes our counted. Politics and policies affect all of us, and voting is your way to make your views count.

Even if you belong to the group that thinks politics in this country is totally skewed due to our First Past The Post system, remember – not voting isn’t a protest. Not voting is throwing away your chance to protest.The only way the system will change is if prove how problematic the system is. If something’s broken for long enough, it has to get fixed.

Young people (and especially young women) are the sector least likely to vote, so we never come top of the agenda. You only have to look at the hardships our generation and the next one are facing – funding for youth work and support cut by up to 70%, tuition fees tripled, loans and bursaries for post-graduates cut, start-up business and funding cut, no cap on renting in London (average renting age is 26), the so-called tampon tax, and so on. If we voted, we would matter. You can’t get annoyed about the way things are if you haven’t tried to change it. Ultimately decided to vote is up to you, and it can be overwhelming – so in case you’re not sure, I’ve rounded up some of my favourite articles and tools that have helped me in the past.

Party policies on funding for the arts.

Party policies on animal testing.

Party policies on animal welfare.

A useful quiz where you select the policies that mean most to you.

Another quiz exploring where your own policies tally with political parties.

Why should you vote?

Why should students vote?

A short, Black Mirror-esque film detailing what might happen if we don’t vote. #XXVOTE