26 Nov 2008 02:40 PM
Government launches consultation on the publication of candidates' addresses on ballot papers

MINISTRY OF JUSTICE News Release (153/08) issued by COI News Distribution Service. 26 November 2008

The Government is asking people for their views on whether the addresses of candidates standing at Parliamentary Elections should be published on nomination and ballot papers.

The consultation paper, 'Publication of candidates' addresses at UK Parliamentary Elections', is published today (Wednesday 26 November) on the Ministry of Justice website http://www.justice.gov.uk/publications/candidate-addresses-consultation.htm.

The consultation paper asks whether:

- the law should be changed to allow candidates standing at a Parliamentary Election to withhold their full address from publication at election time and
- if a candidate's full home address is not to be published, whether the first part (or "outward" code) of the postcode of the candidate's address be published instead.

The consultation paper follows recent concerns raised in Parliament that the current requirements for candidates' addresses to appear on nomination and ballot papers may put the security of MPs and their families at risk.

Comments on these issues are welcome from all interested parties including stakeholders and members of the public.

Michael Wills Minister for Elections and Democracy said:

"The Government has an open mind on this matter. We welcome all views on whether any legislative changes should be made

"I look forward to hearing the range of opinions that this consultation paper will raise."

The consultation paper will run for a period of nine weeks, from 26 November to 28 January 2009.

The results of the consultation will help to advise whether any changes should be incorporated into the Political Parties and Elections Bill, which is currently before Parliament.

Notes to editors

For public enquiries, contact the Ministry of Justice Public Enquiries line on 020 33 34 35 55