YOU are a voter in New Zealand
YOU have a voice through your vote
NO VOTE = NO VOICE!
The General Election is happening on September 23, 2017. It is VITAL that people with disabilities have their say.
This is your only opportunity in three years to influence who runs this great nation of ours. Some people refrain from voting because they can’t decide who to vote for, or they don’t like any of the candidates. Some people don’t vote because they feel they are making a protest or a statement about distrust of the government or the political process.
The truth is that not voting means you have left the decision to everyone else who does vote – regardless of their opinions. Not voting means you have left the fate of the future of New Zealand to people who may never have been touched by disability in any way. How can they possibly speak for you and your priorities?
So, get informed and be ready to VOTE!
My Voice Matters
In the disability sector there is an organised campaign led by disabled people called My Voice Matters. My Voice Matters aims to educate and empower disabled people, families, and staff of support providers, to participate in the General Election. For updates on events and candidate forums addressing disability issues, check out the Facebook page here: https://www.facebook.com/myvoicenz/
If you would like more information on how to vote you can visit the Electoral Commission Website via this link.
Do you understand the voting system?
Our voting system in New Zealand is MMP – which stands for Mixed Member Proportional voting. What this means is that you get two votes: One for the Political Party you support, and one for the candidate who you would like to represent your community in Parliament. There is a short video which explains this proportional representative system here:
How can you decide who to vote for?
The best way to make your decision is to listen to the candidates and ask them specific questions on topics that matter to you. There are often election debates and forums prior to the election where party candidates are invited to attend and outline their positions, as well as answer questions from the community or relevant group.
You can also write directly to any candidate or party to ask questions about their political and policy positions. The list of candidates for each area can be found here:
What are some examples of questions you could ask?
Some examples of questions that candidates have been asked in relation to experiences of disability are:
- How will you/your party ensure that people with disabilities have equal opportunities to work and hold jobs?
- What will you/your party do to ensure that disability support funding is adequate and meets demand
- How will you/your party ensure that disability support funding gives me flexibility and control to lead the life I choose?
- How will you/your party ensure that my community, including public transportation, parks, buildings and footpaths are accessible to me?
- What will you/your party do to ensure I have access to safe, accessible and affordable housing?
- What would you/your party do to improve the public’s understanding of disability and their attitudes towards disabled people?