A new campaign from Operation Black Vote running ahead of the U.K. general election on Dec. 12 encourages young people from black and minority communities to vote by putting real and sometimes shocking words from politicians into the mouths of ordinary people.
Created by Saatchi & Saatchi, the campaign’s central message is that if people from these communities, and young people in general do not register to vote, others with often controversial views will speak for them. This includes a film in which young people in bars and restaurants speak real quotes from politicians that insensitively address issues of race, religion, women, sexuality and climate change. It captures the stunned reactions of their friends as they spout such views, in contrast with what you might expect from young people. At the end of the film the caption reads, “These are real quotes from U.K. politicians. When you don’t vote, other people speak for you.”
Actors and influencers including Nathalie Emmanuel ("Game of Thrones,") Will Poulter ("The Revenant,") British hip-hop artist Nadia Rose, activist and journalist Ash Sarkar and singer Jermain Jackman appear in the film, directed by David Allain of Hungry Man. The campaign also includes a series of billboards depicting famous people with an ‘X’ over their mouths, highlighting the importance of having their voices heard.
Magnus Djaba, global president, Saatchi & Saatchi and CEO, Saatchi & Saatchi U.K, says in a statement, “This election is critical to the future of millions of young people across the U.K. If they are not registered and so cannot vote, they will be letting voters and politicians whose views and beliefs they may disagree with speak on their behalf. Our work shows this by placing abhorrent quotes from real U.K. politicians in the mouths of young Britons that would and could never say those things.”