Democracy Day: On December 5th, it’s time to break the silence on political reform

Sabine McGinley
Author:
Sabine McGinley

Posted on the 2nd December 2019

Few would say with honesty that Westminster is working. So it’s time to talk about how to change it.

The Electoral Reform Society – along with other democracy organisations – are calling for December 5th to be #DemocracyDay, to raise the need for political reform during the election. Click To Tweet

Despite – or perhaps because of –a crisis of trust in politics, the General Election debate has steered clear of the burning need to update Westminster’s broken system. We think that’s a mistake: how our democracy works affects the issues that are discussed, the voices that are heard (or ignored), and the laws that are passed.

This past couple of years we’ve seen scandals in the unelected House of Lords, a toxic political climate encouraged by winner-takes-all voting, the prorogation debacle, and growing calls for votes at 16/17. We’ve seen dark ads and dodgy donations steering our political debate, and First Past the Post voting failing to produce ‘strong and stable’ results.

But these issues have been noticeably absent from the election debate. We say it’s time to talk about our democracy.

With one in four expecting to ‘hold their nose’ and vote tactically this election, while parties stand down and deprive voters of real choice, we need to get to the bottom of the problems in our political system #DemocracyDay Click To Tweet

So, we’re summoning the support of parties, campaigners and the media to use December 5th as a key date to bring Britain’s constitutional crisis – and options for real change – to the forefront.

This has to be the last election held under Westminster’s ‘unjust and undemocratic First Past the Post system’. But for that to happen, we need to make the biggest noise possible for reform.

Across the country, people are desperate for fair representation and greater choice.

So join the ERS and campaigners across the country to speak up for our political rights – and finally bring decision-making closer to the people.

ERS-led events on December 5th

  • Manchester: ERS-backed Democracy Day launch event at the People’s History Museum, featuring speakers from across parties. Register here.
  • London: ERS/Institute for Government event on Westminster’s electoral system. Register here.
  • Aberdeen: ERS Scotland and the University of Aberdeen’s joint public debate on Scotland’s citizens’ assembly. Register here.

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