The Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) has launched its referendum campaign with advertising going live across a variety of channels including TV, radio, digital and press.
It’s been over 20 years since Australia’s last referendum, and the AEC is helping inform CALD Australian voters about the compulsory national vote that will happen later this year.
The AEC has developed translated material about the purpose of a referendum, how a referendum is run and how to participate in the 2023 referendum.
Electoral Commissioner Tom Rogers has said that information about the upcoming referendum is available in 34 languages on the AEC website.
“For people who speak languages other than English as their first language, referendum information is available for you at aec.gov.au/translated,” Mr Rogers said.
“We’re the Australian Electoral Commission and that means providing information for all Australians.”
“Australia has not had a federal referendum in nearly a quarter of a century. This means there are around 6.4 million people on the current electoral roll who weren’t of voting age and many new Australian citizens who will be voting in a referendum for the first time. It’s vital that we’re active in ensuring people know how the process works.”
“I encourage everyone to access our information that explains what a referendum is – to be part of it you have to know what the process is all about,” Mr Rogers said.
“The most important message for all Australian citizens aged 18 or over right now is to make sure you’re correctly enrolled to vote. You can check or update your details on the AEC website.”
In addition to the translated information already on the AEC website, the AEC has launched a national advertising and community engagement campaign, including in-language materials and advertisements across various channels.
“During the referendum we’ll have translated information on how to complete a ballot paper at all polling places and are looking to employ multi-lingual polling assistants in identified areas of need.”
The AEC’s role in referendum
The AEC is an impartial and independent statutory authority responsible for running federal elections and referendums.
Their role is to maintain the electoral roll (the voting list) and provide enrolment, voting and information services about the purpose and process of the referendum.
“The referendum question is for others to debate, we don’t get involved. Our role is to run the referendum event and we’re here to help inform Australian voters about the referendum voting process.”
The AEC encourages voters to find out more by reading information online, in the news and talking to people.
“When you’re doing that, make sure you stop and carefully consider the source so you can decide if it is giving you the correct information about the voting process” Mr Rogers said.
For more information in your preferred language about enrolling and voting in this referendum visit aec.gov.au/translated. Here you can also find links to the AEC’s telephone interpreter service with 19 dedicated language lines, or by calling the general 1300 720 153 to request an interpreter.
For more information on working at the AEC visit aec.gov.au/electionjobs