THE world’s first LGBT rugby football club is mobilising today to encourage voter registration.
An estimated eight million people are not registered to vote in May’s general election — a million more than last year.
Campaigners blame the Tories’ introduction of a new system whereby voters must register individually, instead of as a household.
Significantly, those left unregistered are concentrated in particular groups that include students, young people and newer minority ethnic communities.
Kings Cross Steelers was the world’s first LGBT rugby football club when it was founded in 1995.
Today the club joins forces with anti-racism and anti-homophobia campaign group Hope Not Hate to urge LGBT people and their allies to register.
Hope Not Hate director Nick Lowles said that many of the worst-affected constituencies were key marginal seats.
“There are almost one million fewer people on the electoral register compared to last year, most of them students, thanks to changes brought about last summer,” he said.
“Taken nationally with those already eligible but not registered to vote, there are some 8.5 million people missing from the UK’s electoral register.”
The launch takes place at 2pm at the Memorial Park at 71 Holland Road, London E15.
Under the slogan “Come Out and Vote,” backers include the Communication Workers Union, public service union Unison, GMB Shout!, train drivers’ union Aslef and Britannia Staff Union.
The TUC yesterday launched a charter to promote solidarity with LGBT communities across the world in fighting prejudice.