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Teenagers encouraged to help run police commissioner election

TEENAGERS are being encouraged to help run an election they won’t be eligible to vote in. 

The chief executive of Monmouthshire County Council has appealed to those aged 16 and over to consider working for it at the Police and Crime Commissioner elections due to take place on May 2. 

Paul Matthews, chief executive of Monmouthshire County Council (Pic: Supplied)

Paul Matthews, who also serves as the returning officer – responsible for overseeing elections – in Monmouthshire has taken to social media to try and recruit staff willing to work on polling day. 

He posted on X, formerly known as Twitter: “Are you 16 years old + ? Want to get involved in running an election? It’s a long day but the pay is pretty good, you will enjoy it and you will learn some things.” 

A screenshot of council chief executive Paul Matthews’ tweet encouraging anyone aged 16 or over to consider working as election staff (Pic: Paul Matthews/X)

Unlike elections to the county, and other local councils, and to the Senedd, those aged 16 and 17 aren’t entitled to vote for the Police and Crime Commissioner who is responsible for overseeing the local police force. 

That is because the elections are the responsibility of the Westminster Parliament which hasn’t lowered the voting age, from 18, for them or for UK wide general elections, with a vote that will determine who forms the next UK Government expected in the second half of this year. 

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According to Monmouthshire council’s website, which Mr Matthews posted a link to, it has roles working at polling stations – which are spread throughout the county and have to be open by 7am and remain open until 10pm – and for counting votes, which normally takes place at Chepstow leisure centre. 

Anyone aged 16 or over, with the right to work in the UK, is eligible for the roles but will need to agree to work in excess of the normal working time directive and willing to comply with secrecy requirements but they cannot be related to any potential candidate nor can they work for a political party during the campaign period. 

Staff who work at polling stations will also have to attend a training day and the council’s website states information on pay is available on further request.

More information on how to apply to work at the elections is available from Monmouthshire council’s website at  https://www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/working-at-elections/

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