Now onto the pesky business of how to vote!
Last year just 791 students participated in the Guild Elections, now that is only 2.14% the student body, according to the Returning Officer Election Report 2022.
Though the number was down compared to 2021, which saw 1,028 students vote, the report indicates voter engagement actually went up. This means those who voted in 2022, voted in more election categories than those in the previous year.
While more engagement is always the aim for a representative organisation, the issue of low voter turnout is dire.
In-person voting opens at 10am Monday 18 September, with two locations set up on campus, one at Club HQ near G-mart and the Tav, and the other down the south end near Mallokup Café. Voting closes at 4pm on Thursday 21 September. All you need is your student ID.
The way the ballot works is called optional proportional, where you ‘vote for one, vote for some, or vote for all’. Each position is considered its own election and the number of votes required to win the position is calculated, in part, by how many votes the particular election receives.
If you are away during the voting period, be that catching some gnarly swell or simply exploring the great outdoors, you can apply for a postal vote on the Guild website before 12pm on Tuesday 12 September.
What you won’t be able to do remotely, is consume your well-earned free Democracy Sausage, available from 12pm onwards, while stocks last, so get down early (vegan options will be available as well). All you need to do is show your “I Voted” sticker to receive the free sausage in bread.
But be careful, the sausage sizzle will only be available on Monday (18th) outside Guild reception (Building 106F), while on Tuesday (19th) it’ll be down the south end of campus near the Engineering Pavilion BBQ’s.
However, do keep in mind that parties and candidates can withdraw after the nominations have been announced. Last year one party and its two candidates withdrew before voting commenced.