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The next UK General Election will be held on July 4th 2024. As per the Lobbying Act 2014, for up to 365 days before the date of the election, the UK is in a period where there are requirements on campaigning organisations to adhere to rules about any activity which could be reasonably regarded to influence how the public will vote (i.e we are in that period now, until 5th July).

This guide aims to help make it as easy as possible for you to understand how AIUK is compliant with the Lobbying Act, and what it means for you as an activist to comply with the Lobbying Act.

The key things you need to know: 

1. Most importantly, the Lobbying Act shouldn't stop AIUK, or you, campaigning

This law does not prevent us from campaigning on any issues, including during an election period.  It does not stop activists from campaigning.   

2. Amnesty International UK does not need to be registered as a Non-Party Campaigner

The Lobbying Act requires certain activities to be regulated (and sets a limit on expenditure for those activities), but Amnesty International UK’s assessment is that no campaigning activities we deliver would qualify to be regulated. For this reason we have decided that we will NOT notify the Electoral Commission that we are seeking to register as a Registered Non-Party Campaigner.

This is because under the Lobbying Act activities should only be regulated if they a) can reasonably be regarded as intended to influence voters to vote for or against certain political parties or candidates AND b) are directed at the public.

3. Amnesty International does not try to influence elections

It is one of our founding principles that we are non-partisan. We never endorse any political party or any political candidate. However, we do campaign for human rights awareness and for human rights change. While these issues of course are of political interest and may be supported more, or less, by one political party or another.

For that reason, it is essential that in any public campaigning AIUK undertakes nationally, or you carry out as an activist, you take extra care not to imply support for one political party or candidate over any others. This is particularly important in the context of materials you produce or events you organise (such as hustings) in your role as an Amnesty International UK activist.  Some helpful do’s and don’ts to apply this are below.

4. Do's and Don't's


  • Make general calls in support of human rights. Activities that do not mention specific parties or candidates are very unlikely to imply specific support and so feel confident in making them.
  • If you want to mention candidates or reference political parties, make sure the call urges candidates across parties to support human rights. Purely as examples, calls such as “Rishi and Keir, Save Human Rights!”, or “Red, Blue, Yellow, whatever your colour respect asylum rights” are very unlikely to be construed as implying support for any party specifically so would be OK.


  • Identify and promote particular candidates who support a policy you like.
  • Directly compare the policies of different political parties.
  • Make a call to action specific to voting around a certain policy that is closely associated with certain parties or candidates, for example a campaign action to “Vote against the Rwanda policy”.
  • Give one candidate preferential access to meet with you, or invite one candidate to the exclusion of others to any event or activity you are organising.
  • Call out parties for their stance on particular Bills, or policies.

5. Organising a husting

Hustings are a way some local Amnesty groups choose to organise, to show candidates in your local area that local people care about human rights. Hustings are fine for you to organise if they are non-selective i.e.  you have invited candidates across political parties known to be standing in your area to participate.

Generally this means trying to invite all candidates standing.  However, you don’t have to invite all candidates if there are impartial reasons for not doing so. Impartial reasons can include

  • resources and other practicalities that limit the numbers of people you can invite, for example time or space
  • security concerns
  • local prominence of some parties or candidates over others
  • the number of elected representatives at the local or national level

Non-selective hustings: Good practice recommendations if you can’t invite all the candidates standing to participate

If you decide you can’t invite all candidates for impartial reasons, there are some good practice recommendations you should follow if you want to ensure your hustings is genuinely not promoting particular candidates or parties more than others:

  • Inform the audience at the meeting of any candidates or parties standing who haven’t been invited

  • Be prepared to explain your impartial reasons to candidates or parties you haven’t invited

  • Make sure that candidates or parties you invite represent a reasonable variety of view, from different parts of the political spectrum

  • Allow each candidate or party representative attending a fair chance to answer questions and, where appropriate, a reasonable opportunity to respond to points made against them by other candidates or party representatives

You do not need to ask AIUK’s permission if you want to organise a local hustings. You can find more information on organising a hustings in the Electoral Commission Guidance (which was updated in May 2024):


If you have any questions about local activity that you can, or cannot, undertake as an Amnesty activist during the General Election campaign, please contact .  Please note, as AIUK has to focus on organising national activity, we will not be able to offer any financial support or logistical assistance to you if you do want to organise any of your own local activity (e.g. a hustings) during the General Election campaign.

The Lobbying Act: A guide for local groups