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  • Writer's pictureCarol Barron

Why should I vote?

An election is coming up in a matter of weeks, you probably know this already, but some people don’t know, or don’t care, or are overwhelmed about who to vote for, and I understand that. The value of living in a democracy is that we have the right to vote to determine who will govern out country. And here are three reasons why voting is important:


  1. It gives you a say on important issues that affect you – this could be education, income security, recycling, climate change, housing, employment etc.

  2. Your vote gives you the power to choose to vote for your local and national representatives. If you don’t vote, other people get to decide who represents you.

  3. If you don’t register in time, you may not be able to vote – it is as simple as that. And enrolling to vote is easy – just click on this link to find out how.


Source: https://my.christchurchcitylibraries.com/new-zealand-general-election/


Once you have enrolled to vote, then you need to decide what is important to you, so you can make an informed decision.


You have two votes – one for your local Member of Parliament, and a party vote which determines the number of seats each party has in Parliament.


To find out which party is closely aligned to the issues you are concerned about you can do a quick survey here. The survey asks a few questions and then gives you a result about where you fit in the political landscape and how much you agree with each party. It is quite fascinating – so I encourage you to give it a go.


You can also check out the RNZ guide to party policy which is a great summary and has done all the hard work for you. Read more here.


NZCCSS has created some tables that give a quick understanding of what policies exist for the parties currently in Parliament – check these tables out here. On the NZCCSS website there are also some election blogs you may like to read here.


If you were wondering how the current Government has performed against its manifesto, you can read the NZCCSS manifesto tracker here.


Tick for Kids have created scorecards after surveying all the major political parties about eight policy areas relating to children - care and protection, education, housing, inclusion, incomes, youth justice, climate, and health and wellbeing. You can check out the scorecards here.


Despite what the polls and pundits say, it is likely that this election is going to be very close, so your vote does count. We have the opportunity to elect the most progressive coalition our country has ever seen, giving us the best chance at government policies that will be truly transformative for people and our planet. It is important that everyone votes, and you may like to join with ActionStation to triple the vote. All you need to do is have a conversation with three friends and ask them to vote. Then follow it up once ballot boxes open. Choose three people who care about people and our planet, and are unlikely to vote or undecided on who to vote for. Read more about that here.


I know many of you are already well informed and enrolled to vote and are organising meetings with your electoral candidates so you can question them on where they stand on issues important to you. If you are looking for starter questions, you could choose some from the Methodist Alliance resource for Parishes on Income Security, Debt to Government, and Wealth Distribution, which can be found here.


You can find more questions from the Inter Church Bioethics Council (ICBC) here.


Make your vote count in the 2023 Election, and you can support others to make their vote count too.


Carol Barron, National Coordinator

03 375 0512 | 027 561 9164 | Carol@MethodistAlliance.org.nz

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