Voting centre behaviour guidelines
Voting centre volunteering is very rewarding.
You are standing up for your convictions and supporting something you believe in – a Sustainable Australia with secure jobs, affordable housing, better planning, and a sustainable environment.
As a volunteer for Sustainable Australia you’ll need enthusiasm, energy and a smile. You’ll be promoting the party, its policies and its candidates.
Over 1 in 10 voters decide who to vote for on the day of the election. That's why it's so important to have a presence at the voting centre!
There are a few things to be aware of re polling place regulations. Most notably, by law, you are required to stand no closer than 6 metres from the entrance to the polling booth. The entrance is often the front door to the school, hall, etc. But if in doubt please ask the AEC polling place official to clarify this for you.
Take the time to read our policies on our website (they can be easily accessed via your mobile phone!), so you can answer any basic questions.
Voting centres generally open at 8am and close at 6pm
On election day, we have two shifts (always arrive 15+ minutes early):
- AM: 8am-1pm
- PM: 1pm - 6pm
We particularly need people to fill the all-important morning shift (8am-1pm).
Arrive early (by around 7:45) as voters will be arriving before then to line up and vote at 8am. Start by offering everyone in the line a Sustainable Australia how-to-vote (HTV) card.
Join the polling place 'pack' at the main entrance.
What to say?
Smile and say hello/g’day/good morning/etc to voters if you get the chance.
When offering our HTV card, you should simply smile and say:
NB: If we are just running in the Senate in your area, add "Senate". You won't usually have time to say anything else. If you do, add "Stop Overdevelopment."
If a voter stops to talk to you, read / talk them through the HTV card, which acts as your messaging guide.
If they ask about other policies, you can either say "I'm not sure, but you can check our website" or use your smart phone to show them our policies on (say) environment, health, etc:
- Please do not experiment with different messaging or give your personal views on policy issues to voters or volunteers from other parties.
- If you want to invite someone else (including partners and family) to help at a voting centre, they must both register to volunteer and read this behaviour guide.
Preferences and policies
If voters ask about preferences, tell them Sustainable Australia is an independent community party from the sensible centre and prefers that voters allocate their own preferences.
If they decline to take a how-to-vote card, keep smiling and wish them a good day. There may be the occasional rude voter, but we still have to be warm and pleasant to them. Don’t take it personally or allow such people to take up your precious time and lose the potential to hand out HTV cards. Focus on smiling at the next person.
You are representing Sustainable Australia. Always be respectful of voters and volunteers from other parties. Again, do not experiment with messaging or offer your personal views on policies or issues - please simply promote our official policies. If you do not know the answer to a policy question - just say that you do not know, but that all of our policies are on our website (address listed on HTV card).
Note: Take your Sustainable Australia t-shirt or cap, sunscreen, jacket, umbrella, chair, water, snacks/lunch, HTV cards, and any party signage you have. Most importantly, please enjoy this interesting experience that helps build our collective political skills.
To volunteer: CLICK HERE (and mention 'voting centre')