Now that the federal election has been announced, you have only until 8pm on 12 August to ensure you are enrolled to vote. Why do you need to vote? Because your vote really does count, especially at this election. With 1.4 million people not enrolled according to the Australian Electoral Commission (AEC), that number can make a huge difference to the future face of Australia.
Voting is not just a responsibility of Australian citizenship, it is a privilege to be valued dearly. The news is filled with reports of unfair elections in other countries and the disenfranchisement of entire segments of communities. Governments cannot truly reflect the aspirations of their nation unless the people vote!
What are your aspirations that are at stake at this election?
What's in it for me?
18 to 20 year olds
Recently the ASU wrote to you about the fight to remove junior rates from awards for adults aged 18 to 20: "Are you old enough to be paid fairly?". The ALP has pledged support for this reform, but the Coalition has been silent.
If you want to be fairly treated at work, which political party will best support you?
Penalty rates are under attack from the business community but we know that they are critical for young workers whose pay would suddenly drop without them.
Fancy negotiating your pay and conditions in an individual contract as you enter the workforce for the first time? This is another Coalition policy – to bring back individual contracts that can cut your take home pay.
And aside from workplace policies, there are numerous other things particularly valued by the young: rolling out the (real) NBN and climate change to name only two.
Make sure you know what's at stake for you, then vote!
18 to 100+ year olds
What matters to you?
- Who will defend your rights at work?
- Which party will fund your children's education better?
- What about child care funding?
- Who will improve health services?
- What about other services to the community, will they be cut or sustained?
- Who will deliver a national broadband network that serves the bush as well as the cities?
- Which party has the best policy to tackle climate change?
When you vote, you help decide which policies will be implemented in the future, so make sure you are enrolled.
But I'm in a safe seat, my vote won't matter!
Ah, but you say you are in a safe seat, and therefore your vote won't matter? The last couple of elections should have ended that belief with a sitting Prime Minister losing his seat in 2007 (Howard in Bennelong) and a minority Government formed in 2010. Regardless of what you might think, the numbers are tight and things can change dramatically overnight.
And of course, don't forget your valuable Senate vote!
The upper house of the federal government is not chosen on the basis of electorates but based on state/territory quotas. So even if you are in the safest seat in the country, your Senate vote can make a huge difference. Numbers in the Senate don't determine who forms government, but they determine what legislation passes the Parliament.
Prefer paper enrolment?
Now to decide how to vote...
The ASU has created a page of information and resources to assist our members and supporters on the issues we believe are important at this election for workers. Please have a look and we encourage everyone to make an educated decision on 7 September!