PSA: Today Is the Last Day to Enrol to Vote in the Same-Sex Marriage Plebiscite
Today marks the first important date in the lead-up to Australia's upcoming marriage equality postal plebiscite. We're currently hours away from the enrollment deadline—you have until midnight this evening to get on the electoral roll, or update your postal details in order to have your say on the issue, if you haven't already.
The upcoming plebiscite is serving as a form of public vote, and is being used by the government to gauge how the Australian people feel about changing the country's current marriage laws. While the postal plebiscite is being challenged in High Court, it doesn't hurt to make sure you're details are up-to-date in the likely event that it goes ahead.
Ballots from the Australian Bureau of Statistics are expected to hit mailboxes in mid-September (voting is completely voluntary) with a result to be declared on November 15.
You may find yourself asking, "What happens after the vote?" If most voters say "yes" to same-sex marriage, the result isn't binding, but will still have significant results. As the HuffPost explained, "[Malcolm] Turnbull says that a 'yes' vote will prompt a free vote based on a private members' bill in Parliament, whereas a 'no' vote will not. Labor leader Bill Shorten has been pushing for this free vote without the stepping stone of a postal vote." There's also the fact that a groundswell of support for marriage equality will have political implications of its own.
While there is that possibility the postal plebiscite may not go ahead just yet, or what will actually happen if the majority of Australian’s vote yes, it’s important to be prepared to honour the right to vote and make your voice heard by the governing bodies.