City of Newcastle is encouraging community members and candidates to share their experiences, with regards to the accessibility and compliance of the local government election for Newcastle held in December 2021.

We want to hear your thoughts and ideas, to enable us to provide feedback to the NSW Electoral Commission ahead of the 2024 Local Government Election. The NSW Electoral Commission (part of the NSW Government), was responsible for administering the 2021 election, and will also administer the September 2024 election.

Accessibility is a broad term and may include physical access to polling locations, availability of information and assistance to those who speak English as a second language.

Compliance refers to the fairness and impartiality of how the election is conducted such as non-complying electoral material, conduct of electoral staff, political candidates canvassing near voting centres.

The 2021 Local Government Election

The NSW Local Government Election took place on 4 December 2021 and was overseen by the NSW Electoral Commission (NSWEC), with voting taking place through three main mechanisms; pre-poll voting, poll voting and iVote. Postal and phone voting options were also available.

Across the Newcastle Local Government Area (LGA), 54 venues were operational for residents to vote at. Of the 54 venues, 15 were fully accessible, 35 were of 'assisted access' and 4 were non-accessible by wheelchair.

Seeking feedback on the 2021 Local Government Election

At the Ordinary Council meeting on 28 February 2023, Council passed a motion for the CEO to invite feedback on the administration of the 2021 City of Newcastle Local Government Election, administered by the NSW Electoral Commission, with a focus on accessibility and compliance.

Accessibility may refer to the mobility aids to polling centers such as wheelchair ramp access. It may also refer to whether assistance was available for those who identify as having an intellectual disability or individuals who are from Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) backgrounds.

Compliance is overseen by the NSW Electoral Commission. Further information on compliance, policies and legislation can be found here: NSWEC Policy Library

Thanks for having your say

Thank you for having your say on the accessibility and compliance of the 2021 Newcastle Local Government Election. We will review your feedback and submit this to the NSW Electoral Commission. Your feedback will be used to inform potential improvements for administering the 2024 Newcastle Local Government Election.