The city is becoming slowly covered up with election posters and the chances are you’ll even have received some political leaflets in your postbox. It might not have crossed your mind however, that if you are an EU citizen, you can in fact vote in the Polish local elections.
Any EU citizen can take part in the elections here in Poland on October 21st. You can choose your favoured candidates for Wrocław’s City Council member and mayor, but unfortunately you can’t vote for regional government (Sejmik Województwa).
OK, I’m In. So how do I register?
It’s a relatively simple process if you have the right documents. First you need to bring the completed electoral register form to the Urząd Miasta, along with your passport or ID card (bring a photocopy of this too), plus a copy of your lease agreement. You don’t need to have a ‘zameldowanie’ here in Wrocław, as any document proving you live here is sufficient (e.g the lease may not in your name, but you pay some bills for your place, which should in theory be enough).
The city office you need to go to is on Gabrieli Zapolskiej 4. Once inside, look for the Department of Civil Affairs (Wydział Spraw Obywatelskich) and go to windows 221,222, or 223. There they deal with matters related to registration of voters (Dzial Ewidencji Ludności- Rejestr Wyborców). The office is open from 8.00 until 15.15.
If I register will I still be able to vote in my country of orgin?
Yes! Local elections have nothing to do with your country parliamentary elections, so you are not being crossed off from the electoral register in your own country. Also, when you register for these regional elections in Poland you will be automatically added to the European Parliament voters list in Wrocław. Therefore, if you are moving away from Wrocław before the next EP elections – remember to cross your off name from the Polish electoral register in the same office on Gabrieli Zapolskiej street.
If you don’t speak any Polish or your Polish is not so great, be sure to take a Polish speaking friend with you. People working in the election office don’t deal with foreigners on daily basis so communicating in English could prove tough.
There is no ‘official deadline’ for applications. However the urząd have 3 days to accept or decline your request for registration – so the sooner the better. You should receive notification of your addition to the electoral register via post.
You can find more information on how to apply on wroclaw.pl.