Applications for positions in Polling Stations and Count Centres 2014

21 Mar 2014

In the February Edition of The E bulletin we advised that we had written to Phil Hogan TD, Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government and Joan Burton, TD, Minister for Social Protection to provide greater opportunities for unemployed people to get work in Polling Stations and Count Centres across the country for the upcoming Local and European Elections taking place on 23rd May 2014.

Specifically the INOU called for:

  • A minimum of 20% of polling station positions to be allocated to unemployed people;
  • A more transparent recruitment system which gives unemployed people an equal opportunity to access these positions to be put in place
  • Such a system to be widely publicised so that unemployed people are made aware of how to register their interest in these positions.
  • A recruitment processes that positively encourages and welcomes applications from unemployed people.

We were pleased to be advised by Minister Hogan that that the guidelines issued to Returning Officers for the conduct of the European and local elections on 23rd May asks Returning Officers to give consideration to employing unemployed people, particularly for positions of polling clerk.

The INOU has recently contacted all the Returning Officers to enquire about the application process for these posts. We have been advised that:

  • Applications for positions relating to the elections can be made to the Returning Officer for the local area. The Returning Officer is normally the County Registrar for the County in question, (whose address would be the Courthouse of the main town in the County), with the exception of Dublin and Cork where the City and County Sheriffs are the Returning Officers.
  • References may be required to be submitted with applications (this should be checked with the local Returning Officer)
  • Many Returning Officers have web sites through which applications can be made. If this facility is not available in the particular county, applications may be made in writing to the appropriate Returning Officer. We have been further advised that successful applicants will be required to attend at their polling station from 6 am to 11 pm on the day of the polls.

We are pleased to provide this information for any unemployed people who would wish to apply for these positions. Please do not hesitate to contact the INOU’s Welfare Rights Information Service on 01 856 0088 should you have any queries in relation to how or if such work may affect current payments. We would also like to hear back from people who apply for these positions particularly about their experience throughout the application process, both in terms of ease of application and the outcomes achieved.

Please email us at to let us know how you get on. We would like to take this opportunity to wish people every success with any application they may make.

Please find below a list of useful contacts:

A PDF List of all Local European Returning Officers including addresses (apart from Cork City and Dublin City) can be downloaded at:,36696,en.pdf


Those Returning Officers who have a website can be found at:

Carlow, Kilkenny                       

Dublin City                                     

County Dublin                            

Cork City                                         

County Cork                                


Kerry, West Limerick               

Laois, Offaly                                 


Longford, Westmeath                   







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