Visa Holders Can Now Register to Vote in Council Elections

You don’t have to be an Australian Citizen to vote. If you have lived in a house or worked in a business for over 30 days immediately prior to the 8th of August you are eligible to vote in the Local Government Elections. I don’t think this is well known and I don’t think we do a good job at making it known. The Australian Immigration Department should write to visa holders in the lead up to a local government election and outline what they need to do in order to be eligible to vote. The Immigration Department should work with the Local Government Association of SA to ensure that we encourage visa holders to register and vote to improve the voter turnout across the state. I want to work with the Immigration Department thought the LGA and will bring forward a motion to do so if the Unley Council supports me. There are four main motivators for people to come to Australia: money, love, holiday or education. These are seemingly the avenues that lead to a better life. Not everyone on a visa stays for long. Some are here for a week, others for a decade. Aside from the “holiday” category, those whose visa is tied to a financial, love or educational pursuit don’t hide away in conclaves with people from their own ethnic origin. They engage in society. They contribute. They volunteer, organise activities and groups, join sporting clubs and take their kids to school. Local Government is the only tier of democracy in Australia that enables people who contribute to society but aren’t citizens, to vote. Dear Visa holders, I have embedded three forms with this post for your convenience. You only need to complete the one that is applicable to you (read “notes” on reverse of each form). Please return the completed form by hand to the Council’s Customer Service Desk on 181 Unley Road or by post to: Attention Senior Rates Officer PO Box 1, Unley Road, Unley 5061, SA Here are some prompters to help you determine which form to complete but make sure you read the notes on each to determine which one you need to fill out. You can also contact the Electoral Commission of SA or your local Council for further clarification. Form one is for visa holders to vote in the area where they live “Resident’s not on the State Electoral Role, Non-residential Owners, Non-residential Occupiers (tenants), sole owners or Sole Occupiers”. This form can be completed by anyone who has lived in Unley for more than a month (eg: tenants including non-Australian residents, such as international students over 18 or working 457 visa holders): Council Enrolment Form 1 – Generic – Public Form two is for visa holders who want to vote in the area where they run their sole-prioprietor business “Owner or Occupier (tenant)”. So this form is for visa holders who doesn’t live in Unley but conducts their business in Unley. Download Form Two Here: Council Enrolment Form 2 – Generic – Public Form three is for visa holders who want to vote as the representative of a company “Group Owners and Group Occupiers”. In this case, if a visa holder doesn’t live in Unley but they work in a business, that business can nominate them as the person to vote Download Form Three Here: Council Enrolment Form 3 -Generic – Public For more information about which form you need to complete and return go to the Local Government Association of SA website here or the Unley Council website here.   What a fantastic form a soft diplomacy!   rel=author Lachlan Clyne 0427 132 494


Whilst I am the incumbent Mayor of Unley, the opinions and comments I make on this site are my own and I am a candidate for Unley Mayor 2014.

Categories: Community in Unley, Election 2014, Lachlan Clyne - Personal Life, Mayor Clyne's Opinion, The City of Unley Council

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