Skip to main content

Purdah Explained


If you're involved with government, at any level, you can't help but notice official business grinding to a halt in the run up to an election. Even if the election is for another level of government entirely!

That's all thanks to the concept of 'purdah'.


What is Purdah?

The word is a loan from Urdu, literally meaning 'curtain' or 'veil' and referring to the practice of female seclusion - through physical segregation and / or the wearing of form concealing clothing. In Britain the word came to mean 'isolation', and was eventually used to refer to the restrictions in place in the run up to an election, when public resources must not be used for party political purposes.

Because of the word's origins in female oppression the Welsh guidance is to use the term 'pre-election period' instead.

Election


How does it work?

As a principle, I think we'd all agree that the 'heightened sensitivity' of the pre-election period is a good thing. Political candidates in the UK are meant to be on equal footing, in terms of spending limits, etc, and having civil servants and publicly funded institutions putting their clout behind any particular candidate wouldn't be fair.

In practice, the individual liability of civil servants for breaking purdah leads to overkill. Because on the one hand you have sensible actions like stopping a local authority issuing publicity which might sway voters. But, on the other, you have trickle down effects like politicians being unable to represent their institutions at anything lest it be seen as an endorsement.

Sunday, for example, I had to fill in last minute to lay a wreath at Cwmbran's Remembrance service on behalf of Torfaen County Borough Council because I'm technically apolitical as chair of council. If another politician had lain it then it could be argued the Council was actively supporting and providing a platform for their political views...

Still, until a Westminster government does the sensible thing and overhauls how it works, the pre-election period is here to stay. It begins six weeks before an election - November 6th this time around - and essentially means no political business or new policy decisions are made until it is over.

Realistically speaking, given the time scales, that will mean after Christmas.


Guidance from the Local Government Association:





For more like this, please click the image below:
Civic Life in the UK


Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Over 200 UK Refer and Earn Offers for 2022

So many stores and services offer special rewards and discounts for recruiting them new customers. No matter what you're into, there's a refer and earn offer for you! Some of these translate to straight up free and easy money through cashback or reward sites, others require you to be an existing customer or jump through several hoops. There are over 400 offers listed on my Codes, Coupons and Discounts Pinterest board, and I am (slowly) working on updating this post to reflect the cream of the crop! CASHBACK, SURVEYS, REWARDS & DEALS 20 Cogs . Get £20 when your friend completes 20 cogs (i.e. offers), and 5% of their earnings for life. You also need to complete 20 offers yourself before you can cash out. Airtime Rewards . Get up to £1.50 bonus credit for each person who signs up with your referral code. Mine is 9CKQXLH8. Cashback Earners . Earn 5.00 CashCoins and 10% of their earnings from purchases. 20 CashCoins minimum payout. Cashback Kingdom . Both get a bon

Free Magazine Scans

Click the pictures below to find full cover guides to various teen magazines (primarily collated to make scale miniature magazine covers but I figure they'll also be useful for collectors and anyone into media history) and scans from my own magazine collection. I've also got a couple of kids' books I didn't want to part with - The Squirrel and Little Owl Book of Pets . The unwieldy size of my bookmark folders convinced me I needed a reference post for online magazine archives. Or, more accurately, free online magazine archives. Whether you're looking for leisure reading or research avenues, you're bound to find something useful in this list. :) ☆ Archive for the Unexplained - UFO mags galore. ☆   The Magazine Rack - over 140,000 digitised magazines! ☆   Lantern - thousands of vintage film magazines. ☆ FANZINES  - a number of online archives now exist for these including  FANAC  (SF), ScoTpress  (Trek), Sandy Herald Collection  (media fandom, major

Free Fabric Samples x 200

Choosing upholstery and soft furnishings can be a nightmare - especially if it arrives and isn't quite what you expected. Fabric samples are a great way to avoid costly mistakes, as well as providing a fab source of material for your crafts box. Here are over 200 places offering completely free fabric samples in the UK:

Simply Cook Review

I kept seeing ads and deals for Simply Cook everywhere, so as there was a special offer on at OhMyDosh! Rewards (£3 for the box and £3.50 cashback) I figured I had nothing to lose by giving it a try. What Is It? Recipe kits packed into boxes which fit through your letterbox. The usual price is £9.99 for a kit of 4, with each one serving 2-4 people depending on your serving sizes. All you need to do is buy the fresh ingredients required and follow the instructions. Here is Simply Cook's own helpful diagram: Does It Work? For me, as the person just eating it, it was awesome. Everything tasted great - the mushroom penne in particular was so good I went back for seconds - and I liked that the sauces weren't as rich as Anthony would usually make them. For Anthony, who cooked them, they weren't as impressive. He complained that the food was bland and that it was actually quite a lot of faff, as Lidl didn't stock everything we needed which meant another trip ou

Dolls