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e-petitions

A service enabling Islanders to create a new petition, or search and sign other people's petitions to the States

Live date: August 2018

In January 2018, States members unanimously agreed that there should be an online facility for petitions. The new website would make it easier for Islanders to make their views known to the States Assembly.

Once a new petition has been created at petitions.gov.je and has had five 'signatures' it is then reviewed by the States Greffe. Once the wording has been amended if necessary and approved it appears on the website for others to 'sign'. If an e-petition receives over 1,000 signatures, the minister responsible for the requested action will be required to give an official response. If an e-petition receives over 5,000 signatures, the chairman of the Privileges and Procedures Committee will bring forward a request for a debate to the States Assembly.

How was the system built?

Development work started in April 2018. Rather than build the petitions system from scratch, we adapted the existing system used by the UK Parliament. The UK system was created as open source software, allowing others to copy it and adapt it without licence costs. We engaged the company that had built the UK system, Unboxed, to adapt the system to Jersey's needs. They changed the text and the colour scheme, as well as removing some features that were UK specific and adding some features that were unique to Jersey.

A period of beta testing took place before the new system was launched on 6 August 2018.

What challenges did we face?

States members decided that only people who are resident in Jersey should be able to start a petition or sign a petition. This has been achieved by limiting access to the pages where people can start a petition to devices accessing the Internet from Jersey. Adjustments to this have been necessary due to technical limitations in distinguishing between internet users in Jersey and Guernsey.

What happens next?

In the next phase, we will integrate Digital ID so that people from Jersey who are not currently on the Island can sign a petition. Users who log on to the petitions system with their Digital ID will be able to sign a petition more quickly because their email address will have already been verified.

Business owner

Mark Egan - States Greffier

Project team

  • Lee Jeanne, Information Services - Project Manager
  • Marcus Ferbrache, Information Services - Head of Digital Delivery
  • Unboxed - developers
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