A BUS will take to the streets of Barking in a bid to get young people on board the voting register.
As part of an Electoral Commission-backed initiative, the eXpress bus will visit boroughs across the capital to increase the number of under-represented groups, such as students, to register to vote.
The drive is led by Operation Black Vote in collaboration with national and local organisations in a countrywide tour to increase the number of voters in the run up to the General Election in May.
They have joined forces with youth vote project Bite the Ballot as well as Operation Disability Vote and the British Chinese Project, which aims to increase the number of votes of Chinese origin.
A fully equipped bus where people can register to vote will be in Barking Town Centre on Friday, 27 February from 10am-6pm.
The bus has 12 computer stations on board so people can register online and there will be leaflets produced by the Electoral Commission. Visitors will need their national insurance number and date of birth to register.
To register to vote online, either on the bus or at home or work, residents must go to the gov.uk website and fill in some basic information.
Council Leader, Councillor Darren Rodwell said: “I welcome the visit of the eXpress bus to our Borough and urge as many people as possible to visit or at the very least register to vote and participate in local politics.
“We live in a democracy and as Leader of the Council I want us all to come together to build civic responsibility and work together – all communities – to shape our quality of life as one borough and one community.”
Simon Woolley, Director of Operation Black Vote, added: “Anyone who is eligible to vote is welcome on our bus whatever their background, whether they are students, the less able and those until now not wanting to engage in our democracy.
“The 2015 General Election offers us a unique opportunity to make our democracy more inclusive and reflect our greater diversity. To this end we want to work with LB of Barking and Dagenham.
“I’m sure you’ll agree this is a wonderful opportunity for you to confirm your commitment to our inclusive democracy, and to ensure that as many disenfranchised citizens as possible have the opportunity to register and then participate in our democratic process.”