“My Vote Matters” (myvotematters.com.au) has released a handy ‘How to Vote’ guide to help make sure you cast a valid and informed vote in the federal election to be held tomorrow on Saturday 18 May 2019 in Australia. It has also released a policy scorecard comparing major parties on most issues that concern the voters.
The “My Vote Matters” (myvotematters.com.au) is an initiative of the Islamic Council of Victoria in order to provide information to the community in order to cast their votes in an effective manner.
MyVoteMatters (MVM) utilises all of the main digital channels (website, FB, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube) to communicate with the community. The FB page (https://www.facebook.com/myvotemattersau/) is updated on a daily basis and with significant community comments.
MyVoteMatters (MVM) has three primary objectives:
- Encourage Muslim community engagement with the political process via exercising their right to vote. And educating the Muslim community about how the political system works. The MVM website has a lot of information about this (https://myvotematters.com.au/category/2019-federal-election/).
- Providing easily understood material to the Muslim community about the issues that matters and the relative policies of the political parties so that they make an informed choice at the polling booth. The final product will be a Policy Scorecard (I have attached the Scorecard used during the Victorian state election last last year).
- Developing Muslim community capability and capacity for grassroots, community-led, campaigning.
In relation to the second objective, the idea is to ascertain the relative priorities of the community on the many issues in the public domain.
Many of these issues are common (i.e. common across the entire Australian society) and some are more more specific to the Muslim community.
A number of policy issues have been shortlisted based on national poll results, anecdotal feedback from the Muslim community, and MVM team knowledge.
- Healthcare (affordability, access to services, mental health services, disability services)
- Education (government funding, affordability, TAFE, NAPLAN)
- Economy (personal and corporate taxation rates, government debt, support for small business, housing affordability)
- Job Security (casualisation or the workforce, worker rights, living wage)
- Immigration & Refugees (current intake levels, offshore detention, refugee settlement and temporary protection visas)
- Aged care and pensions
- Social justice (First Nations people, poverty, wealth disparity, homelessness)
- Climate change
Muslim Community Issues
- Islamophobia (racism and discrimination, media reporting, political rhetoric)
- Foreign Affairs (oppressed Muslims in Myanmar and China, Palestine)
My Vote Matters has also released a public statement regarding the rise of Islamophobia in the run up to this 2019 Federal election.
“Even by the recent low standards in Australian political rhetoric, the disgracefully divisive and hateful statements and stunts pulled by these would be representatives are disturbing,” ICV President, Mohamed Mohideen said.
Earlier in May, it published a “List of Openly Islamophobic Parties Running in the Senate.”
Voters should reject anyone dividing the nation based on ethnicity or religion, and reject all forms of political extremism and religious radicalism. No Australian should vote a racist, bigot, extremist or promotor of hate and division.