by unionsadmin / in ,

Political Freedoms - Submission to Federal Inquiry

Unions NSW is concerned by state or federal government attempts to place restrictions on the implied freedom of political communication by seeking to restrict the spending of specific groups of third party campaigners during election periods. Such a move would be contrary to the principles of supporting the current freedoms associated with people’s right to participate in the democratic process of elections and would burden the implied freedom of political communication.
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Local Government Expenditure Caps – Submission to NSW Inquiry

The Electoral Funding Act introduced expenditure caps for local government elections where previously there were no limits on spending. The caps are inconsistent, inequitable and are set at a level too low for candidates or third party campaigners to engage meaningfully in the electoral process.
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Federal Election – Submission to Senate Inquiry

Unions NSW and affiliated unions participated in the 2016 Federal Election as a third party campaigner through the ‘Build a Better Future’ campaign. Third party campaigners play a crucial role in the electoral process, providing voters with an avenue to collectively pool their resources and raise issues important to them. Unions NSW opposes any changes to the Commonwealth Electoral Act, 1989 which would restrict the ability for third party campaigners to participate in electoral campaigns.
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Campaigning at Polling places – Submission to NSW Inquiry

Third party campaigners play an important role in elections, raising the profile of issues important to voters. As member based organisations, unions work to educate and mobilise large number of activists and members to take part in political activities, including polling day. It is important NSW legislation supports this civic engagement and does not seek to limit the ability of third party campaigners and their volunteers to participate in election campaigns.
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Brief of Electoral Funding Act

The Electoral Funding Act (NSW) significantly restricts the ability of third party campaigners, like trade unions from participating in state elections. The Act halves the expenditure cap for third party campaigners and restricts third party campaigners from acting in concert.