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Australia For thousands of migrant Australians, dealing with a Queensland election can be a 'bewildering' experience

23:15  19 october  2020
23:15  19 october  2020 Source:   abc.net.au

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The 2020 Queensland state election is scheduled to be held on Saturday 31 October 2020 to elect the 57th Parliament of Queensland .

ABC chief elections analyst Antony Green said the COVID-19 pandemic meant fewer ballots would be cast on election day itself, so more voters than usual would make up their minds well in advance. The town of Collinsville has a proud mining history and unemployment is a key issue for voters.

a woman posing for a picture: Monisa (left) has been teaching her mum Phay how to vote. (ABC News: Jessica Rendall) © Provided by ABC News Monisa (left) has been teaching her mum Phay how to vote. (ABC News: Jessica Rendall)

On prior election days, Cambodian migrant Phay developed a habit of taking the first how-to-vote card handed to her and headed to a polling booth.

She copied what was printed on that card onto her ballot and cast her vote.

Phay had been using this method for years — meaning each time she headed to the polls, the first party to approach her got her vote.

That was until her daughter Monisa, who grew up in Australia, became old enough to vote.

Elections then became a family affair with Monisa, now 29, schooling her mum on the different parties and explaining which candidate would best support their needs.

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image captionScott Morrison is Australia 's current prime minister. Australians are voting in a closely-fought general election on Saturday. "It was a peculiarly Australian form of madness," Mr Turnbull told the BBC in March, speaking about a coup In the northern state of Queensland , experts say the

The Queensland State Nomination Skilled Program is closed for FY19-20. This includes both the Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) (subclass ANZSCO is used within skilled visa programs, where it is a requirement for visa eligibility, as the standard by which a visa applicant’s skills to undertake a

"She can't read or write (English) so I have to show her on a piece of paper, 'Cote for this party, these are the people who will support your views or values'," Monisa said.

Phay migrated to Australia in 1987 and, like many other migrants, she found the language barrier made engaging with politics difficult.

"It is quite difficult; I'm not fluent in English, so I don't understand much, but I'm trying to learn," Phay said.

Migrants scarred by homeland politics

Languages are not the only barrier to democratic participation.

Social cohesion activist Ali Kadri said many migrants who have left behind corrupt totalitarian governments in their homelands were still scarred by the state of politics they had escaped.

Mr Kadri suggested a lack of understanding of democracy was behind the lack of engagement.

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Unlike most migration agencies, we have Australian lawyers who specialise in immigration law on staff which we believe allows us to provide a superior service. Immigration law is a highly specialised area of the law and even lawyers in law firms and QCs who hold full practising certificates are not allowed to

This is a list of electoral division results for the 2019 Australian federal election in the state of Queensland .

"[Migrant families] don't really understand how a modern Australian 21st century democracy works — where everyone has a voice," Mr Kadri said.

"What you don't know you fear, and you stay away from it."

Mr Kadri said he wanted to see more political resources for migrants, to better educate them on Australian democratic processes so they could become active members of their communities.

Voting 'a bit bewildering'

Belong, a community service group in Acacia Ridge on Brisbane's south side, is echoing that call.

In the lead-up to elections, Belong's communications director Damian West hosts an 'active citizenship program' teaching migrants about Australian politics.

"We teach people how the entire process works, from start to finish — from the moment you consider registering to vote to what an election day looks like," Mr West said.

"I think any of us who have voted for the first time understand that it can be a bit of a bewildering experience."

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Australia 's English test for partner visas could leave women at mercy of abusers, experts warn. Budget announcement that applicants must have made ‘reasonable efforts’ to learn Allocations in areas from women’s support and the arts to offshore detention, the audit office and ‘ghost nets’ are a mixed bag.

Victoria. South Australia . Queensland . Today all Australian States and Territories have active policies and programs dealing with multiculturalism. It agrees there is a need to change the direction of its services to migrants and that further steps to encourage multiculturalism are needed.[27].

In previous years, the workshop has brought in migration lawyers, social workers, migrant community leaders and even politicians as guest speakers.

Activities include a mock election day simulation where attendees are jovially ambushed with how-to-vote cards and learn how to fill out a ballot paper featuring fake candidates.

Sunday Okeny, 22, said the workshop taught him how to cast a more meaningful vote.

"I just usually put one, two, three, four, five, six [and] I don't think I've been doing it right," he said.

"It was really hard for me going into the polling booth and not knowing how it all works."

Mr West hopes the workshops help combat the prevalence of informal voting in the local area.

"We're based in the federal electorate of Moreton [where] there's in excess of 100,000 registered voters," he said.

"I believe at the last federal election there were 35,000 votes cast that were invalid.

"There's a really significant element of the electorate that has high concentration of people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds not understanding how the process works."

Program run on 'scent of an oil rag'

While Mr West recognised language was one of the main barriers to voting for migrants, he said the grassroots program only had the capacity to offer the workshop in English due to a lack of funding.

"Interpreters come with a price tag," he said.

"This program is run off the scent of an oil rag and, unfortunately at the moment, it's just not possible for us to provide that service.

"Hence my belief that that is a gap that needs support and attention from the Government."

Myanmar must not disenfranchise minority voters .
The UEC’s recent decision to not hold elections in areas affected by unrest will hamper Myanmar’s democratisation.The commission cancelled polling in parts of the states of Rakhine, Shan, Kachin, Kayin and Mon, as well as the Bago region, all of which are troubled by various levels of unrest. “Those particular areas cannot guarantee conditions to hold free and fair elections and that is why the election is cancelled,” the UEC said in a statement.

usr: 58
This is interesting!