Enrolment is compulsory for all persons who are 18 years or over and an Australian citizen or an eligible British subject. Once enrolled it is also compulsory to vote for all prisoners serving a full-time sentence of less than three years. A prisoner who is serving a full-time sentence of more than three years is not eligible to vote in a federal referendum.
The AEC engages with correctional facilities in each state and territory to determine what voting services can be provided.
Mobile voting teams visiting prisons will begin progressively from Monday 2nd October 2023.
Contact facility administrators about the voting services available.
If you are a prisoner, you must enrol for the address where:
- you were last eligible to be enrolled (this will generally be the place where you last lived for at least one month), or
- one of your next of kin is currently enrolled if you have not previously been eligible to be enrolled, or
- you were born, if neither of the above apply, or
- you have the closest connection if none of the above apply.
You can register as a general postal voter to have ballot papers automatically sent to you when a federal, state or local government election or referendum is called. You can register by selecting 'I wish to register as a GPV' on the online enrolment form. If you are not a ‘general postal voter’ but require a postal vote for the 2023 referendum, you can apply for a postal vote when the referendum period has begun.
A mobile polling team may visit your prison. You can also ask facility administrators about the voting services available to you from your prison.
Under electoral and referendum legislation, a prisoner who is serving a full-time sentence of more than three years is not eligible to vote in a federal referendum. For this to change is a matter for Parliament – not the AEC.