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Does it matter if I’m not from Guernsey?

No, it doesn’t matter. So long as you meet the basic residency requirements (check the Election website if you’re not sure), you’re entitled to stand for the States.

And why shouldn’t you? You love Guernsey enough to have chosen to make it your home. You chose to become part of this community; to contribute your work and your taxes to this economy; to educate your children in this Island’s schools. You may not have seawater flowing through your veins, but you chose this place, and that counts for something.

Of course, not everyone feels the way I do about this. There are plenty of people who will criticise Deputies who were not born in Guernsey for being “foreign”. But then, even States Members whose Guernsey roots can be traced back for generations have been told off for not “acting local” when they make decisions some Islanders disagree with.

That, if anything, tells you how meaningless this dislike of “outsiders” really is – it’s hardwired into Guernsey political commentary as an acceptable way of calling out politicians you disagree with, but it’s not OK, and you don’t owe it a moment of your time.

I suppose the only practical point to mention is that if English is not your first language, that’ll make some parts of the job harder. But you know what you’re capable of, and you’re already here – working in an English-language environment – so that alone is no reason not to go for it.

Besides, some of the most important things the States does – such as voting! – are done in French, which is almost no Deputy’s first language. So there’s a language barrier which affects more people than you’d realise, but we make it work, and so will you.

Go back to Getting Into Guernsey Politics
Go back to Section 1.1: Making the Decision
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Guernsey’s iconic women of the future?

Thank you for nominating a young woman or girl for our future iconic Guernsey women campaign to celebrate International Women’s Day!

Nominations close on Sunday 6 March at 17.00.

Please fill in the details below.


Miriam Makeba - South Africa

Nominated by: Christine James

Zenzile Miriam Makeba (1932 to 2008), nicknamed Mama Africa, was a South African singer, songwriter, actress, United Nations goodwill ambassador, and civil rights activist. Associated with musical genres including Afropop, jazz, and world music, she was an advocate against apartheid and white-minority government in South Africa. In 2020 she was named one of Time magazine’s 100 women of the century. 

South Africa is ranked 12th in the world for percentage of women in national parliament: 45.8% (source: 

Are you from South Africa? Please email if there is a social or cultural group for people from South Africa in Guernsey.

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The original image “The Hague Jazz 2008 – Miriam Makeba” by Haags Uitburo is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0. 


Jacinda Ardern - New Zealand

Nominated by: Martin Lock

Jacinda Ardern (born 1980) has served as prime minister of New Zealand and leader of the Labour Party since 2017. In 2019, she led the country through the aftermath of the Christchurch mosque shootings, rapidly introducing strict gun laws in response, and throughout 2020 she directed the country’s widely praised response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Ardern was the world’s second elected head of government to give birth in office when her daughter was born in 2018. ‘An inspiring Prime Minister who brought a nation together with true leadership, empathy and compassion.’

New Zealand is ranked 4th in the world for percentage of women in national parliament: 48.3% (source: 

Other iconic women: Dame Whina Cooper, nominated by Claire Fisher, and Kate Sheppard, nominated by Anna Cooper.

Are you from New Zealand? You may be interested in joining the ANZACs in Guernsey Facebook group

Want to learn more about public office vacancies in Guernsey? 

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