§ Mr. Evans
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what steps he has taken to ensure that electoral registration officers will use only new postal and proxy voting forms which accord with the provisions of the Representation of the People Act 2000. 
§ Mr. Mike O'Brien
[holding answer 26 February 2001]: There is no prescribed form for making absent vote applications. My Department has provided a specimen postal vote application form to electoral registration officers but it is for them to determine whether absent vote applications meet the requirements as set out in the Representation of the People Regulations 2001.
The Home Office will, however, be writing to these officers encouraging them to consider making their forms available to all political parties and to be proactive in bringing absent voting arrangements to the attention of voters locally.