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How to vote from overseas in Australia’s equal marriage postal ballot

Nick Duffy September 25, 2017

(Photo by Cameron Spencer/Getty Images)

Overseas voting begins today in Australia’s postal ballot.

Australia’s right-wing Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull is currently holding a country-wide postal vote on whether same-sex marriage should be permitted.

Polling has shown a drop in support for equal marriage as anti-LGBT activists began a divisive campaign based on tactics developed by evangelicals in the US, attempting to conflate the marriage vote with transgender issues and LGBT sex education.

Voting opened today for overseas Australian citizens, two weeks after ballots were first sent out within Australia.

Same-sex marriage postal form
(Photo by WILLIAM WEST/AFP/Getty Images)

The Australian Government has also made provisions for Australians living, working, and travelling overseas to have multiple ways to participate.

Australian citizens who have an overseas postal address on the Electoral Roll will be posted a letter containing their Secure Access Code allowing them to vote. Those overseas can also request an access code online.

Australian citizens overseas can use the secure access code to vote online via Australian government’s marriage survey website, or over the phone by calling +61 2 6252 5262.

Alternatively, Australians living or working overseas can ask a trusted person back in Australia to complete the survey at their Australian address on their behalf.

Alex Greenwich from the Equality Campaign said: “More than a million Australians live overseas and these could be the votes that decide the outcome of the postal survey.

“Whether it’s voting over the phone, online, or getting a friend or loved one to fill in the survey on your behalf, Aussies overseas have a critical role in ensuring we win.

“The postal survey gives everyone the ability to vote for our national values of fairness and equality, and to vote for your friends, family members and loved ones.”

Anna Brown from the Equality Campaign said: “We know a majority of Australians support marriage equality.

“We need everyone to complete the survey if the result is to accurately reflect the long-held support of the Australian people for equal status and dignity for all.”

Australian expat Joe Murphy, who married his husband Nick Smith in New York last year, said: “This survey allows us to vote yes to making the country we love a fairer and more equal place. We’re going to make sure we vote and tell all our fellow expats to do the same.”

More: Australia, Australia, Australian, equal marriage, Gay, LGBT, postal, same sex marriage, vote

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