Register to Vote
Voting to choose our political representatives is everyone's basic right.
There are three steps to making sure you can vote on the 24th May:
Step 1. CHECK THE REGISTER
Step 2. REGISTER TO VOTE (if you are not already registered)
Step 3. VOTE ON 24th MAY BETWEEN 7AM AND 10PM
1. CHECK THE REGISTER
If you are not sure if you are registered to vote, you can check the register by going to www.checktheregister.ie
On the Check the Register website, you need to first choose your provence (Connaught, Leinster, Munster or Ulster) and then choose the city or county where you live from the second list. When you submit these details, you will then be asked to enter your name and address.
Please note: you may have to use your full name rather than a shortened version or nickname, if that is what is on the official records.
2. REGISTER TO VOTE
You can still register to vote up until the 7th May. To do this, you have to ask for your name to be included in the Supplemental Register of voters.
In order to register as a voter, you need to fill out the right form. Forms are available here: https://www.checktheregister.ie/PublicPages/AppForms.aspx
To enter your name on the Supplemental Register, complete Application Form RFA2.
Irish citizens may vote at every election and referendum.
British citizens may vote at Dáil elections, European elections and local elections.
Other European Union (EU) citizens may vote at local elections and they may choose to vote for the European election in Ireland OR in their home country. (To choose to vote in Ireland's European elections as an EU citizen living in Ireland, complete Application Form EP1).
Non-EU citizens may vote at local elections only.
3. VOTE ON 24th MAY BETWEEN 7AM AND 10PM
On 24th May, people in Ireland will be asked to vote on three or four separate issues, depending on where you live. In Ireland, most people vote in personal at their local polling station. A small number of people are entitled to a postal vote (see below).
Polling stations will be open between 7AM and 10PM on Friday 24th May.
Local Council Elections
Every local council area (city or county) is divided into local election areas. Typically, between 4 and 7 Local Councillors will be elected from each area, and they will form part of the elected Council for your city or county.
European Parliament Elections
Ireland will elect 11 MEPs (Members of the European Parliament), with 3 MEPs for Dublin, 4 MEPs for Midlands North-West and 4 MEPs for South.
(If and when the UK leaves the EU, Ireland will gain two more MEPs, one for Dublin and one for South).
Irish citizens will be asked if they agree with removing the part of the Constitution (Bunreacht na hÉireann) that specifies that people seeking a divorce have to be separated for four out of the last five years. Labour is advocating a Yes vote to remove these restrictions.
Cork, Limerick and Waterford Mayors
Voters living in Cork, Limerick and Waterford will be asked to vote on the proposal to introduce directly-elected mayors, who will play an important role in directly managing the local council. Labour is adovocating a Yes vote to these proposals.
IRELAND'S VOTING SYSTEM (HOW TO VOTE)
Referendums in Ireland are simple Yes (Tá) or No (Níl) questions, and you will be given a piece of paper where you can indicate your choice by putting an X inside just one box.
For the Local and European elections you will be given a list of candidates, which will show their name, their photograph and the name and logo of their political party. The list is usually in alphabetical order by surname.
Elections in Ireland use a system called the Single Transferable Vote (STV). That means that you vote using numbers (1, 2, 3, 4, ...) in order of your preference. You write a number 1 beside your first preference candidate, a number 2 beside your second preference, a number 3 beside your third preference, and so on.
If a candidate is elected with a surplus of votes, or if a candidate is eliminated, his or her first preference votes are then transferred to the second preference on each voting paper. If a second preference vote is eliminated, the vote is transferred to the third preference. And so on. This voting system ensures a fairer share of votes across the political parties, which is also known as proportional representation or PR. (This voting system is also why counting the vote takes so long in Ireland).
It is up to you whether you want to just give a number 1 vote and then stop, or else to give a number 2 to a second candidate, or to allocate further preferences.
Where Labour are running more than one candidate in an area, we ask you to give your first preference to the Labour candidate of your choice, and then to give your second and third preferences to other Labour candidates seeking to represent your area.
APPLY FOR A POSTAL VOTE
You may be eligible for a postal vote if you are:
- An Irish diplomat or his/her spouse posted abroad
- A member of the Garda Síochána
- A whole-time member of the Defence Forces.
You may also be eligible for a postal vote if you cannot go to a polling station because:
- Of a physical illness or disability
- You are studying full time at an educational institution in Ireland, which is away from your home address where you are registered
- You are unable to vote at your polling station because of your occupation
- You are unable to vote at your polling station because you are in prison as a result of an order of a court.
If you are registered as a postal voter, you may vote by post only. You may not vote at a polling station.
Click here for a PV1 form, for a postal vote due to illness or disability.