A new initiative will see 1,000 people with learning disabilities across the country attend workshops aimed at getting them involved in politics and Parliament.
The ‘Love Your Vote’ campaign will see The Houses of Parliament Outreach Service partner with learning disability services provider Dimensions to run the first-ever nationwide accessible workshops for adults with learning disabilities on engaging in politics.
The campaign was launched after Dimensions found that just 10% of people with learning disabilities supported by the organisation voted in the last general election.
Draw people with learning disabilities into the debate ‘Love Your Vote’ has the backing of John Bercow MP, Speaker of the House of Commons, who said: “We need to do more to consider how people with a learning disability can be drawn into the national conversation.”
Fifty workshops across 25 venues will take place through the campaign; with spaces for a total of 1,000 people to attend the workshops.
Steve Scown, chief executive of Dimensions, said: “It is very disappointing that so few people have used their opportunity to vote in the past and it is so important to ensure people know all about their voting rights.
“The rights of people with learning disabilities and autism should never be marginalised and I really hope this campaign will help people to understand the voting system further and be encouraged to participate in making future decisions for this country.”
Sir Robert Rogers, clerk of the House of Commons, added: “It’s clear that people with a learning disability are not as engaged in political life as we would like them to be. The Love Your Vote campaign has provided Parliament Outreach with an excellent opportunity to reach out to this group, raise awareness about the work of Parliament, and to encourage people with a learning disability to get involved in the political process.”