The National Youth Council (NYCI) of Ireland has welcomed the unprecedented surge of voter registration ahead of the referendum of May 25.
Returns received by NYCI indicate that up to 125,000 people were added to the supplementary electoral register between February and the May 8 deadline.
The figures show a potential increase over of 90 per cent when compared to the voter registration figures for 2015's marriage equality referendum.
James Doorley, NYCI Deputy Director explained: “For example the numbers registering in Meath (123 per cent), Kerry, (112 per cent), South Dublin (103 per cent) and Westmeath (103 per cent) are up over 100 per cent on 2015. Other counties such as Galway, (97 per cent) Tipperary, (92 per cent), Kilkenny (86 per cent) are also recording a much increased level of registration.
"Leitrim stands out as a result of an 213% increase in voters included in the supplementary register with 670 additional voters in 2018 compared to 214 in 2015."
Earlier this year, NYCI expressed concerns that 22 per cent of young people were not registered to vote, however, Mr. Doorley praised the work of a number of youth organisations that helped drive the late surge in registration.
“We know that a lot of work was done by a range of organisations in late 2017 and many thousands of eligible voters were added to the electoral register.
"It is really heartening that so many young people responded to the call by NYCI and others and took the opportunity to register at events organised by the USI, ISSU, SpunOut, individual student unions, youth organisations and community groups in recent weeks to ensure they had the right to vote in the upcoming referendum.”
The organisation is confident that this high level of youth registration will translate into a high level of youth voters and is providing information for young or first-time voters who may have questions following the registration process and in advance of May 25, at www.youth.ie/vote.