Observing elections to improve democracy
A team of 3 observers, registered with the UK’s Electoral Commission, made 29 separate observations in 23 different polling stations across the Stoke-on-Trent Central parliamentary constituency. This constituted all of the polling stations in the area.
Each observation in conducted in pairs to allow for objective observation and they then agreed their opinions of the electoral process before submitting data to the central team. The survey was conducted online so data was collected, and could be checked, live.
The observations generally took between twenty and thirty minutes per polling station as the observers were asked to ensure that they attempted to see the entire process, which included staff greeting electors on arrival at the polling station.
Each team of observers was contacted throughout the day by the central team to ensure that observation was as uniform as possible.
The organisation of polling stations was well run across the council area, voters could clearly see how to access voting and staff were trained to manage the process. We would, however, draw attention to the large scale evidence of ‘family voting’ which the team identified in 24% of polling stations.
Click the link below for the Interim Report from the parliamentary by-election below.