How voting works at elections in Australia (Queensland)
Recently, a big portion of news in Japan has been focusing on the election of the next Tokyo Governor. Along with the news of the election, I have also seen a number of advertisements to encourage people to go vote. This has been somewhat interesting to me as we do not see this type of advertisements in Australia.
Why? Well because voting is compulsory in Australia – not optional.
First this law applies to all who are eligible to vote. That is, people who are Australian citizens over the age of 18. Hence when there is any type of election to select the next person in power, we receive a letter informing us of the next upcoming voting day and venue. To help those who have difficulty voting , there are various methods to vote apart from voting in person on the specific day. We can apply for early voting and postal voting through the government election website.
What happens if we don’t vote?
Well we receive a fine of $133.45 (for those in the Queensland state). That’s roughly 10000yen! Definitely not an amount that I would want to pay if I can avoid it by just going out to vote, which usually takes less than 30 minutes.
Now fortunately for someone like me who is living overseas, we can apply for postal voting or we also have the option to apply for exemption through the government election website.
That’s it for today’s quick explanation of how voting works in Australia. What do you think about this system? Do you think it’s a good idea or would you be against it? Let us know next time!