Federal Election 21 August 2010
Remote Polling For 2010 Election Underway
Australian Electoral First Assistant Commissioner Kevin Kitson
Victor P Taffa
Residents of Gunbalanya, a remote Aboriginal community on the eastern border of the Kakadu National Park, cast some of the first votes in the outback for the 2010 federal election when the Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) remote mobile polling team set up in town on 11 August.
In the two weeks leading up to the election on 21 August, 38 remote mobile polling teams will visit more than 400 communities nationally to ensure that Australians living in geographically remote areas have the opportunity to take part in the country’s democratic process. In the 2007 federal election, the AEC provided remote mobile polling services at 391 locations and issued 20,277 votes, the majority of these being cast in the Northern Territory.
“AEC mobile polling teams will cover more than 1.3 Million sq km by road, air and sea to reach remote outstations, pastoral properties, small towns, tourist resorts and mine sites in the Northern Territory, New South Wales, Western Australia, South Australia and Queensland.” AEC First Assistant Commissioner, Kevin Kitson said today.
“A large proportion of people voting via the remote mobile activity are living in Indigenous communities. Since the 2007 election the AEC has introduced a new program to increase the level of awareness and participation of the democratic process amongst the Indigenous population.”
The Indigenous Electoral Participation Program (IEPP) operates Australia-wide in remote, rural and urban communities and focuses on increasing enrolment and voting for all three levels of government.
“A key component of the IEPP is an education and enrolment program delivered by AEC officers face-to-face with Indigenous audiences. In remote communities, AEC field officers have travelled in advance of the polling teams to ensure communities are aware of the electoral process and are encouraged to enrol and have their say.” Mr. Kitson said.
Remote mobile polling visits have been promoted through shire councils, posters and AEC community contact officers. There has also been advertising via newspapers, radio and television. Electors can find out when a mobile polling team will be visiting by calling the AEC on 13 23 26 or you can view a list of remote mobile polling places in NSW, QLD, SA, WA, NT.