The SNP has long been in favour of giving 16 and 17 year olds the right to vote in all elections but the power to enable 16 and 17 year olds to vote in Council and Scottish Parliament elections remains reserved to Westminster.
Electoral registration officers have begun gathering information for the electoral roll which will be used for the referendum. In addition to the usual household registration forms, people will also be given young voter forms to allow details to be collected of everyone who will be aged 16 and 17 on referendum day.
Dr McLeod said:
“I encourage all of our young people who will be 16 or over on September 18 next year to make sure they are on the electoral roll so they can have their say on Scotland’s future.
“I believe that 16 and 17 year olds should have the right to shape the country they live in – particularly when they can pay taxes, get married and join the armed forces. It is only right and fair that they should also be entitled to vote.
“Today’s registration process is thanks to the progressive legislation passed by the Scottish Parliament that gives 16 and 17 year olds the right to participate in next year’s referendum – but in my view this should be the norm for every election.
“Securing the power to give 16 and 17 year olds the vote at every election is one of the clear gains that are on offer with a Yes vote in next year’s referendum.”