POLITICS

Please DON'T Put Glitter In Your Plebiscite Envelope When You Mail It

The ABS and AEC say it could affect your vote.

14/08/2017 8:01 PM AEST | Updated 14/08/2017 8:01 PM AEST
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A lot of people are upset that the postal plebiscite is going ahead, but no matter how you feel, we're being asked to not put anything else in our envelopes besides the ballot paper.

Since the postal survey was announced last week, to the protests of Labor, the Greens and many in the LGBTI community, some people have been joking about filling up their envelope with glitter. You might remember the short-lived trend of "glitter bombing" from several years ago, after an Australian start-up began offering a service to deliver envelopes full of glitter -- which would immediately spread everywhere upon opening the mail -- to friends or enemies. The trend experienced a sharp drop-off in popularity after activist group GetUp! sent packages to conservative MPs as they pushed for marriage equality in 2015, and Liberal member Craig Laundy called emergency services when he feared the package he had been sent contained a suspicious substance. That episode ended with six fire trucks, six police cars and one hazmat unit rushing to Laundy's office.

Nonetheless, many marriage equality supporters have raised the idea in the past week as a kind of non-violent protest against the postal survey. There has even been a dedicated website set up which will send packages of glitter to federal MPs including Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull or Tony Abbott for $8.95.

However, the Australian Electoral Commission has warned against getting colourful with your plebiscite vote. In reply to a Twitter user's question on Monday, the AEC said adding glitter to your survey response might affect your vote.

So there you are -- as much as you might like to, please don't put glitter in your envelope. It might mean your vote isn't counted. Plus, maybe also spare a thought for the ones who'll actually be on the receiving end.

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