Do Something Amazing and Join Our Voters' Panel
PUBLISHED: 10:44 22 April 2009 | UPDATED: 10:51 04 May 2010
THE Ely Standard is looking for 10 people to take part in an Election Focus Group. We have teamed up with Cambridgeshire County Council to launch a Voter Turnout Campaign called Do Something Amazing. Ideally, we are looking for people who have never v
THE Ely Standard is looking for 10 people to take part in an Election Focus Group.
We have teamed up with Cambridgeshire County Council to launch a Voter Turnout Campaign called Do Something Amazing.
Ideally, we are looking for people who have never voted; perhaps voted intermittently in the past or people who just don't bother to vote in local or county elections. We want to know why you don't vote; discover how much you understand about the functions and responsibilities of the county council and the voting system, and discover what, of anything, could be done to persuade you to mark your X in the box on polling day. It would also be interesting to have some people who always vote so that we can find out why they think it is important to exercise their right to vote.
We want the focus group to comprise of men and women, young and old and people from all different walks of life and occupations.
Ely Standard editor Debbie Davies said: "I think this will provide us with a fascinating insight into why so few people vote in local elections, which is around 35% generally, when the areas of county council responsibility effects people's lives in such an important way. All those day-to-day things that have such an impact on quality of life, like transport, schools and social services.
It will also provide us with an interesting social study into what people think about elections and why so few of them tick the box on polling day."
Members of the Focus Group will be interviewed in vox pop style and the interview will be filmed and used as a podcast on You Tube. Everyone will be asked to follow the election campaign through the county council website and the Ely Standard and then interviewed again just before polling day so we can find out if they are any more engaged with the process or completely turned off by the whole thing.
"We want people to be honest about how they feel and why they don't vote and also what they understand about local services. We also want to hear from people who do actually vote so that we can discover why it is important to them," added Debbie.
A spokesman for the county council said: "The county councils elections are your chance to have a say on who runs the local services that really matter, schools, roads, transport, recycling, and social care for young and old.
Everyone in Cambridgeshire uses our services. Thousands of people depend on them everyday. Voting in all elections influences what priority is given to which services because different parties have different priorities, so it means you really are having your say."
All filming for the Focus Group will take place at the Ely Standard office in Market Street, and each session will only take around half an hour. The group will be filmed before the election and then again on polling day so that we can see if they feel any differently. The interviews will also be available on the Ely Standard election micro site and published in the paper.
If you would like to take part in the Focus Group, telephone Debbie Davies on 01353 667831 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org