2018 Boundary Review

The Boundary Commission is currently undertaking a review of the constituency boundaries in the United Kingdom. They have been tasked with reducing the number of Members of Parliament from 650 to 600. Each constituency (except four specific island constituencies) will have roughly the same number of electors. This number will be between 71,031 and 78,507. The Commission is due to report to the Government in September 2018, however these will not be public until they are laid in Parliament by the Government. This time period is at the Governments discretion.

I support the aim of equalising the number of electors per constituency. I believe this is a positive electoral reform, that will create a closer step to equal representation of people in Parliament. However, there are many issues which have been created by this Government.

I am concerned about the rules set by the Government. They chose the electoral register from the 1st December 2015 as the base for the Boundary Commission to work from. This has led to over a million voters, who have since registered, being left unaccounted for in any proposal set by the Commission. Voters who have since reached voting age, fell off the register due to Tory changes in registering to vote, and previous non-voters. We have had a high-profile Referendum, and a General Election since 2015 which many have registered to vote for. This means millions may not be represented in the boundaries proposed, and therefore the aim of equalising constituencies will not be achieved. 

It is also clear the Government made these decisions to give the Tories an advantage in future elections rather than helping to make the House of Commons more democratic. I urge the Government to reconsider the choices they made and allow the Boundary Commission to create a fair set of constituency boundaries. 

Jared O'Mara MP
Sheffield Hallam

Jared O'Mara