Votes for British expats

Page 1 of 2 1, 2  Next

View previous topic View next topic Go down

Votes for British expats

Post by CharlotteOliver on Fri Jan 17, 2014 10:54 pm

Just wanted to highlight the topic of the right to vote for British citizens in UK general elections. as many know, after 15 years residence outside the UK you cannot register to vote. The next general election will be the last for me....!

Even the Commissioner for Justice Viviane Reding says the UK is punishing its citizens for exercising their right of free movment in Europe. Harry Shindler, now 93 has been campaigning on this issue since 2007, last year unfortunately the. European Court of Human Rights decided there was no violation. But the Committee on Petitions of the European Parliament has picked up the point and invited Harry to Brussels to speak at their next Meeting on Monday 20th January. Harry is not well so I will be going to represent him.

This issue needs more prominence, especially with European elections coming up, and most importantly with the looming prospect of a Referendum to vote the UK out of the EU. Surely we should be able to have our sy on that?

CharlotteOliver
Contributor

Location : Rome
Posts : 10
Join date : 2013-12-29

Back to top Go down

Re: Votes for British expats

Post by modicasa on Sat Jan 18, 2014 6:33 am

I think that the basis should be on residency and not on citizenship.  Having left he UK I think its fair to not be allowed to vote in UK elections - but it really bugs me that I cant vote in Italian elections.  I pay tax, INPS and what the government does (or more strictly speaking doesn't do) affects me directly, so why cant I have my say?  It should be one or the other otherwise within Europe - the great state of the free - there are people like me completely disenfranchised.

modicasa
Elder

Location : Sicily
Posts : 529
Join date : 2013-05-20

http://www.modicasa.com

Back to top Go down

Re: Votes for British expats

Post by Gala Placidia on Sat Jan 18, 2014 9:15 am

Other EU nationalities (Spain, France as an example) maintain your voting rights indefinitely and I think that it is a fair attitude. Even if you are living overseas, matters relating to your country of origin will affect you ( pensions, benefits, inheritance...) and you should have a say. Spanish and French politicians campaign in and visit overseas posts. The French have special parliamentary representatives for those who live overseas and they really look after their constituents. On the other hand, EU regulations allow EU citizens to vote in local and EU elections wherever you live, so I think that it is a balanced approach. Sorry guys, but the British government is treating you like second rate citizens. Most unfair! Protest!
avatar
Gala Placidia
Moderator

Posts : 1820
Join date : 2013-05-20

Back to top Go down

Re: Votes for British expats

Post by Vicino on Sat Jan 18, 2014 11:00 am

I totally agree that we should be allowed to vote and Gala mentioned some of the reasons ! I seem to recall that you have to register EVERY year to 'claim' your entitlement, and you would be voting in the election at the location where you were last registered ?

Go for it Charlotte !

V
avatar
Vicino
Elder

Posts : 514
Join date : 2013-05-25

Back to top Go down

Re: Votes for British expats

Post by FBower on Sat Jan 18, 2014 5:48 pm

On the other hand, EU regulations allow EU citizens to vote in local and EU elections wherever you live, 


how is it then that, as Modicasa states, we can't vote in Italian elections? EU nationals can vote in the UK if registered.

FBower
Elder

Posts : 54
Join date : 2013-06-17

Back to top Go down

Re: Votes for British expats

Post by Gala Placidia on Sat Jan 18, 2014 5:59 pm

All EU citizens who are registered as residents in an Italian Comune can vote in both local (municipal) an EU Parliamentary elections. They cannot vote in national elections as they are not citizens of Italy (unless they naturalise). So basically, the UK will be taking away from you a basic citizenship right.
avatar
Gala Placidia
Moderator

Posts : 1820
Join date : 2013-05-20

Back to top Go down

Re: Votes for British expats

Post by Flip on Sun Jan 19, 2014 9:31 pm

The only problem with this is that they don't send out the Voting papers until 4 days prior to the Election, and if you do receive it before the Election Date there is very or little chance of them receiving the Ballot Paper back before the close of play. The only other option is Proxy Voting, but they don't make it easy for one to do that either.
avatar
Flip
Elder

Location : nr. Bagni Di Lucca. LU
Posts : 796
Join date : 2013-05-25

Back to top Go down

Re: Votes for British expats

Post by CharlotteOliver on Wed Jan 22, 2014 11:17 pm

Thanks goes to Harry Shindler, a 93 year old second world war veteran, Londoner, who lives in Le Marche. He has been campaigning since 2007 and took it to the European Court of Human Rights and petitined the European Parliament. Even thought the UK are not interested in changing the law any time soon, it is possible they are going to have to think again in February as the European Commission are preparing a formal statement suggesting the Uk should come into line with other EU countries. If you are able to move to live in Italy as a Britsh natinal and EU citizen, it should be your choice whether to continue to vote in the UK. If you choose to become an Italian national then you can vote in Italy. I am so horrified that the government are tyring to pass a referendum bill on the future membership of the EU, I want to be able to have my say, but my 15 years runs out soon!! And if I can choose one day to go back to live in my country of nationality, surely I should still have the right to elect who is going to be running it in the meantime!

CharlotteOliver
Contributor

Location : Rome
Posts : 10
Join date : 2013-12-29

Back to top Go down

Re: Votes for British expats

Post by Gala Placidia on Thu Jan 23, 2014 12:07 am

I don't think that it is fair for the British people residing overseas not to have their say in their own country's elections. Or to force them to go through a naturalization process to have voting rights. As long as you keep your British citizenship, you should be entitled to vote in your  own national elections. I am sure that the British government is delighted to be able to get as many taxes as they can collect from you...then, they should respect your rights. Go for it, Charlotte! They are WRONG!
avatar
Gala Placidia
Moderator

Posts : 1820
Join date : 2013-05-20

Back to top Go down

Wrong?

Post by stevegwmonkseaton on Thu Jan 23, 2014 11:04 am

Gala Placidia wrote:I don't think that it is fair for the British people residing overseas not to have their say in their own country's elections. Or to force them to go through a naturalization process to have voting rights. As long as you keep your British citizenship, you should be entitled to vote in your  own national elections. I am sure that the British government is delighted to be able to get as many taxes as they can collect from you...then, they should respect your rights. Go for it, Charlotte! They are WRONG!

Bold statement to state someone is wrong! I have the utmost respect for the guy and think it a disgrace that someone who has fought for his/her country has not earned a lifetime right to partake (or not) in every aspect of that countries future. However (and I don't have a clue about their reasoning behind this) in a democratic country (in you an vote) you live by it! Just for the record I am English, but have almost abandoned my country of birth, but do still pay taxes there...  Sad  Smile  Sad

stevegwmonkseaton
Elder

Location : Abruzzo
Posts : 1927
Join date : 2013-05-20

Back to top Go down

Re: Votes for British expats

Post by Gala Placidia on Thu Jan 23, 2014 11:41 am

Flip, what I am saying is that to try to curtail your citizenship rights by denying the vote to British nationals who happen to live overseas is technically and morally wrong. People should be able to retain all of their basic citizenship rights, regardless of their place of residence, as long as they wish to exercise them. What is totally absurd is that, taking into account technological advances, it should not be difficult at all to cast your vote from anywhere in the world. So, my friendly advice would be to fight for your rights. (I already said here that one of my New Year's resolutions was to be politically incorrect and to become a rebel...)
avatar
Gala Placidia
Moderator

Posts : 1820
Join date : 2013-05-20

Back to top Go down

Re: Votes for British expats

Post by Flip on Thu Jan 23, 2014 12:05 pm

Oy!!! me Flip him Steve
avatar
Flip
Elder

Location : nr. Bagni Di Lucca. LU
Posts : 796
Join date : 2013-05-25

Back to top Go down

Re: Votes for British expats

Post by stevegwmonkseaton on Thu Jan 23, 2014 7:09 pm

Flip wrote:Oy!!! me Flip him Steve

Oh Flip you bad person you!  Rolling Eyes  Laughing  Rolling Eyes  Laughing

stevegwmonkseaton
Elder

Location : Abruzzo
Posts : 1927
Join date : 2013-05-20

Back to top Go down

Re: Votes for British expats

Post by Gala Placidia on Thu Jan 23, 2014 7:38 pm

Sorry Flip, I meant Steve...
avatar
Gala Placidia
Moderator

Posts : 1820
Join date : 2013-05-20

Back to top Go down

Re: Votes for British expats

Post by stevegwmonkseaton on Thu Jan 23, 2014 7:52 pm

... trouble is with what you are saying Gala is that I suspect you know little about the UK to give a balanced view?

stevegwmonkseaton
Elder

Location : Abruzzo
Posts : 1927
Join date : 2013-05-20

Back to top Go down

Re: Votes for British expats

Post by Gala Placidia on Thu Jan 23, 2014 8:34 pm

Steve, I am talking about a very basic citizenship right which is respected by many countries, many of them EU countries. This is why I think that Harry Shindler is absolutely right and I do hope, for the good of all British expats, that the EU will finally be able to "convince" the British government that it should come into line with other EU countries. Now, if you are happy about being deprived of a very basic citizenship right... fine. If you want to naturalize Italian in order to vote... fine. Do as you wish. And without wanting to be pedantic, although I am not a British citizen, I think that I know quite a bit about the UK. Possibly more than your average UK citizen...
avatar
Gala Placidia
Moderator

Posts : 1820
Join date : 2013-05-20

Back to top Go down

Re: Votes for British expats

Post by stevegwmonkseaton on Thu Jan 23, 2014 9:59 pm

Gala Placidia wrote:... I think that I know quite a bit about the UK. Possibly more than your average UK citizen...

Oh dear...

x

Mr Average...

stevegwmonkseaton
Elder

Location : Abruzzo
Posts : 1927
Join date : 2013-05-20

Back to top Go down

Re: Votes for British expats

Post by CharlotteOliver on Wed Jan 29, 2014 2:30 pm

Very interesting to hear your views on this. For me and Harry Shindler who took the issue to the ECHR it is an important principle. Most countries allow their nationals to retain their voting rights for a lifetime (think how many Italians in the US can continue to vote here...). I think it should be personal choice.

Today there has been a major breakthough. The European Commission issued a "Recommendation" to Member States (UK, Ireland, Germany, Denmark and Cyprus) stating that the removal of the right to vote of their nationals is technically a restriction to the right of free movement of EU citizens and disenfranchisement if they have no right to vote where they are living, and recommending a change in the electoral law in these countries A recommendation is a legal instrument, therefore very forceful, although it is not legally binding so it will be interesting to see how the UK responds...

You can see the press release at this link: http://europa.eu/rapid/press-release_IP-14-77_en.htm

CharlotteOliver
Contributor

Location : Rome
Posts : 10
Join date : 2013-12-29

Back to top Go down

Re: Votes for British expats

Post by Gala Placidia on Wed Jan 29, 2014 3:34 pm

Good to hear, Charlotte and even if it does not affect me, I consider it a basic right and I would like to see everyone (regardless of citizenship) being able to vote in their country elections.
avatar
Gala Placidia
Moderator

Posts : 1820
Join date : 2013-05-20

Back to top Go down

Re: Votes for British expats

Post by ghiro on Wed Jan 29, 2014 8:33 pm

CharlotteOliver wrote:Very interesting to hear your views on this.
A recommendation is a legal instrument, therefore very forceful, although it is not legally binding so it will be interesting to see how the UK responds.
And there's the crucial question.  How will the UK government respond to this 'legal instrument'?

The American War of Independence was fought over 'No Taxation without Representation'.  IMHO if you pay taxes in a country then you should have the right to vote.  If you don't pay taxes then you forfeit the right to vote (No Representation without Taxation).
avatar
ghiro
Moderator

Location : Massa-Carrara
Posts : 825
Join date : 2013-05-24

Back to top Go down

Re: Votes for British expats

Post by stevegwmonkseaton on Wed Jan 29, 2014 9:12 pm

Most definitely agree with Ghiro, pay your tax, then keep your vote....

stevegwmonkseaton
Elder

Location : Abruzzo
Posts : 1927
Join date : 2013-05-20

Back to top Go down

Re: Votes for British expats

Post by CharlotteOliver on Wed Jan 29, 2014 9:27 pm

Definitely do not agree... Many who move abroad have income in more than one country and have to pay tax in two places. The concept of residence is blurred these days, every person should have a right to participate. The 93 year old Harry Shindler fought for the British army in the war, paid his taxes there until he retired, and now his state pension from the UK is taxed at source. But he is disenfranchised. He would like to continue to particpate in the shaping of the country he was born, he moved away to live in Italy to follow his grandchildren, should this mean he must sacrifice all the rights connected with his nationality, and his domicile?

CharlotteOliver
Contributor

Location : Rome
Posts : 10
Join date : 2013-12-29

Back to top Go down

Re: Votes for British expats

Post by Gala Placidia on Wed Jan 29, 2014 9:33 pm

Ghiro and Steve, What can I say? Amazing answers!  Rolling Eyes  Following your line of thinking, you should be giving voting rights in the UK to all the Chinese, Russians, Turks, Senegalese and Syrian(and all other nationalities) who pay taxes in the UK. By the same token, you should take away the passports of all UK expats living overseas who do not pay taxes in the UK. And while you are at it, double check the Electoral Rolls with the Taxation Office, as you may be able to delete a few voters... By the way, to hold a passport is another citizenship right, just in case you did not realize it... same as voting.

Charlotte, I totally agree with you.
avatar
Gala Placidia
Moderator

Posts : 1820
Join date : 2013-05-20

Back to top Go down

Re: Votes for British expats

Post by Gala Placidia on Wed Jan 29, 2014 9:41 pm

I could not resist posting this  Razz 
avatar
Gala Placidia
Moderator

Posts : 1820
Join date : 2013-05-20

Back to top Go down

Re: Votes for British expats

Post by stevegwmonkseaton on Wed Jan 29, 2014 10:10 pm

Gala Placidia wrote:Ghiro and Steve, What can I say? Amazing answers!  Rolling Eyes  Following your line of thinking, you should be giving voting rights in the UK to all the Chinese, Russians, Turks, Senegalese and Syrian(and all other nationalities) who pay taxes in the UK. By the same token, you should take away the passports of all UK expats living overseas who do not pay taxes in the UK. And while you are at it, double check the Electoral Rolls with the Taxation Office, as you may be able to delete a few voters... By the way, to hold a passport is another citizenship right, just in case you did not realize it... same as voting.Charlotte, I totally agree with you.

Just shows your low level of thought and amazing ability to miss the obvious...

stevegwmonkseaton
Elder

Location : Abruzzo
Posts : 1927
Join date : 2013-05-20

Back to top Go down

Re: Votes for British expats

Post by Sponsored content


Sponsored content


Back to top Go down

Page 1 of 2 1, 2  Next

View previous topic View next topic Back to top

- Similar topics

 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum