Who is eligible to register to vote?

Discussion in 'I have a partner with dementia' started by northumbrian_k, Jul 8, 2019.

  1. northumbrian_k

    northumbrian_k Registered User

    Mar 2, 2017
    753
    Male
    Newcastle
    I have received a letter from the city council enclosing the Household Enquiry Form on which 'The Occupier' must provide information on all who live at this address in order to check who is eligible to register to vote. I have no issue with providing the information - there is a possible fine of £1,000 for not doing so - and have used the householdresponse.com facility to do this online.

    My wife no longer lives here and will not be coming back. She lives in a different part of the city (electoral ward and constituency) so I have removed her name. I thought that there might be a routine for updating her address details as well but there was not.

    It is a moot point anyway. A person who needs turning round to face the right way in the booth, has to have the pencil placed into her hand and then reminded to put a cross in the chosen box (if, in the moment, she can understand the options) seems barely capable of making an informed choice of who to vote for.

    Two questions crossed my mind. Firstly, do care homes have the same duty to confirm their 'household' residents? Secondly, is a person with advanced dementia still considered eligible to vote even though they are unable to make anything other than the simplest of choices?
     
  2. canary

    canary Registered User

    Feb 25, 2014
    10,237
    Female
    South coast
    My mum voted the first year she was in her care home. It seemed weird to me as she had no capacity, I was applying for CoP deputyship and she was subject to a DoLS

    But hey ho, she was eligible to vote
     
  3. Jaded'n'faded

    Jaded'n'faded Registered User

    Jan 23, 2019
    426
    Female
    High Peak
    Is it just me or does anyone else think that is ridiculous? It's also a bit contradictory - you don't need mental capacity to vote but you do need mental capacity if you want to appoint a proxy to do it for you. (Though I suppose that is to prevent abuse.)

    The scenario with mum would be much the same as for @northumbrian_k 's wife. Mum hasn't a clue who is in power, knows nothing of Brexit, the Tory leadership campaign, etc. But as she's always voted Tory, I know that's what she would want to vote in any future elections, etc, regardless of the current political situation.

    However... having thought about this a bit more, would 'allowing' mum to vote be any different from the fact that others are 'allowed' to vote when they don't understand the issues?! There is no rule saying you must be well-informed and vote sensibly! (And the world is full of numpties...!) Mum's level of understanding seems to make a mockery of voting but I can just about see that she still has a right to do so.

    But I'm afraid I won't be assisting. If mum asks about voting at any point then maybe I will enable it, otherwise the country will just have to manage without her contribution...:rolleyes:
     
  4. northumbrian_k

    northumbrian_k Registered User

    Mar 2, 2017
    753
    Male
    Newcastle
    Thanks @nitram that is very helpful. In the past I have assisted my wife to vote by making sure that we get to the polling station in good time, waiting until I know that she has given her address properly, helping her into the booth, giving her the pencil, and reminding her what she needs to do. I have been conscious to be seen not to coach or influence her in any way. More recently, even getting her to the polling station was a challenge so I tended to go myself, often on the way back from a bike ride. If she had been aware and insisted on going to vote then I would have done my best to help her. It seems unlikely that it will be an issue henceforth.
     
  5. marionq

    marionq Registered User

    Apr 24, 2013
    5,790
    Female
    Scotland
    I have this problem with my SIL. She’s 83 and totally deaf and unable to speak or read beyond basic nouns. She brings all mail to me including her voting forms. Because John and I were always conscientious voters she wanted to do this too but frankly she could be voting for a dead body for all she knows.

    This is never comfortable for me as basically I am voting twice and she signs her forms without knowing what she is doing. She is shrewd though and this her way of appearing normal. What to do?
     
  6. northumbrian_k

    northumbrian_k Registered User

    Mar 2, 2017
    753
    Male
    Newcastle
    My wife has made some pithy remarks about Boris Johnson @Jaded'n'faded !
     
  7. Grahamstown

    Grahamstown Registered User

    Jan 12, 2018
    1,325
    East of England
    We were away for the last election and I did request a postal vote but not in time. I did tick for all elections box. Prior to that he was able to walk down and I had to tell him what to do but now he couldn’t do that. This thread is very useful thank you because now I know to help him at home.
     
  8. Lawson58

    Lawson58 Registered User

    In Australia, voting is compulsory but what that really means is that you either show up on Election Day or make arrangements to either vote early or do a postal vote. They make things so easy for you that it is pretty hard to find an excuse why you didn't (or wouldn't) vote. Some people write rude things on their voting slips or simply don't write anything at all.

    At the moment OH is able to vote but I have no idea of what happens when he can no longer do it. They fine you for failing to vote.
     
  9. Jaded'n'faded

    Jaded'n'faded Registered User

    Jan 23, 2019
    426
    Female
    High Peak
    So have I :D

    Unfortunately mum lives in a world of delusion and confabulation. Her world has closed in so much that things like politics and government are just no longer on her radar :(

    So sad. She was once a very intelligent and savvy person.
     
  10. Sirena

    Sirena Registered User

    Feb 27, 2018
    1,500
    Female
    My mother is now in a care home and unable to understand the concept of an election, I am not sure she could even put a cross in a box. She was never a keen voter and I don't know how long she kept voting - I just pray she didn't actually go out and vote in the past 3 years as she would have had no idea what she was doing.
     

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