‘Town short of polling stations’
Voters in Ballincollig are being discouraged by the lack of polling stations on the western side of the town, a local councillor claims.
Derry Canty has urged the Department of Housing, which is responsible for conducting elections, to establish a second polling station locally to avoid having voters travel across the town to exercise their franchise.
For the recent presidential election and abortion referendum, polling stations were available at the girls’ national school (Scoil Mhuire) and boys’ national school (Scoil Eoin), Scoil Barra and Gaelscoil Uí Riordáin. Mr Canty said all the schools are situated to the eastern side of the town, with none toward the Inniscarra side.
Ballincollig will become part of the city, under the 2019 boundary extension, following May’s local elections.
“I know of one young man who was voting for the first time, from Classis Lake, and had to get a bus up to the main street and then walk from there. He missed the bus on the way back and had to walk all the way home,” said Cllr Canty. “It’s discouraging people from voting, because if you have no mode of transport, the chances of you making the effort to travel all the way down are minimal.
“The department is going to have to look at this, as the local elections are coming up in May and we will also have Dáil elections in the not-toodistant future. For the local elections, we are voting as a city ward, but, for the general elections, we will still be voting as part of the Cork NorthWest ward. That also needs to be addressed,” he said.
“There was a low turnout in the presidential election and I believe that will continue, unless it’s made easier for people to vote.
“Older and young people are all affected by this,” he added.