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How do I become a councillor?

How do I become a councillor?

Standing for election

You don’t need to be affiliated to a political party to stand for election. You can stand for election as an independent candidate or on behalf of a political party. Either way, you should be clear about your views on local issues and expect to be questioned by the public about what makes you different from other candidates.

The Local Government elections for all 32 councils in Scotland are next being held on 5th May 2022, though there may be by-elections in before then which may provide an opportunity to stand for council. Your local council’s democratic services team will be able to advise if any by-elections are being held.

You should also check whether you are eligible to stand for election by checking out the criteria on the Electoral Commission website.

Standing for a political party

If you are a member of a political party and would like to stand for election on behalf of that party, you will need to be selected through that parties local internal selection process. For more information, contact your party’s local branch.

Standing as an Independent

Currently, 1 in 7 councillors in Scotland are Independent and not affiliated to a political group. If you are considering standing as an Independent councillor, please familiarise yourself with nomination information on the Electoral Commission website.