Demand to be seen for who we really are at this election

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Australia reMADE is about long-term vision for our country and our future, one that goes beyond the next election to the next decade.  However, elections are incredible times to talk about, and act on, the future we want; and we deserve to be led by vision.

We've put together some thoughts on how we can use our influence to lead, demand and shape a better conversation at election time.  

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Demand to be seen for who we really are at this election

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Research repeatedly finds most Australians are not nearly as angry or divided as the mainstream political narrative might have us believe, especially at election time.

At Australia reMADE, we embarked on our own qualitative research journey across the country in late 2017, hosting in-depth conversations with hundreds of everyday people and community leaders alike. We found that people are starving for vision, and that no matter who they are, their hopes for our future are remarkably aligned.

You can read the full vision borne from these conversations here, but here are three points we think are key for this election about what Australians really want:

  • A society that puts people and planet first. One where we understand our lives depend on the natural environment, we all have access to clean air and water; to good food and to land that is well cared for. Where we no longer exist in a state of fear, denial or despair about our impact on the natural world.

  • An economy for the people, including a tax system where everyone contributes according to their means and corporations pay their fair share. That’s part of having an economy that works for everyone, with money for the essential services everyday people care about most. At work, people can expect to be treated fairly and paid on time, while earning enough to make ends meet, sustain a family and retire well.

  • Less money and more diversity in our politics. Our elected leaders are here to serve the greater good, putting the needs of the country before party or personal ambition. With big money no longer funding political campaigns and politicians, they think beyond the next election cycle to the next generation, and what our country really needs. Our Parliament is as diverse as our population; deeply in touch with the communities they represent and the impact of any decisions they make.

It’s important for us to remind ourselves and our leaders, publicly, about who we really are and what we really want.

And of course, whether our media and politicians choose to talk about it or not, these principles rest on the foundation of First Peoples being recognised at the very heart of what it means to be Australian. Two out of three voters this election support Constitutional change to enshrine an Indigenous voice to advise Parliament, according to the ABC’s Vote Compass.


It’s important for us to remind ourselves and our leaders, publicly, about who we really are and what we really want.

Otherwise, someone else defines the debate –whether that’s the neoliberal think tanks and corporate lobby groups, or the multi-million dollar negative ad campaigns we’re bombarded with on TV. They send a depressing message to our young people in particular about what leadership and democracy are all about. Their negativity turns ordinary people off politics and the political process altogether. This in turn narrows our pool of potential leaders. It fuels a paralysing sense of cynicism about democracy and cynicism about each other. And it makes people like us feel small and stay small, when in fact our values and priorities are held by the majority.

Elections can be better, if we demand it.


Elections can be debated and decided on the basis of ideas, a picture of how we want our society to be. They can represent an opportunity to bring us closer to a future we’re excited to create. Our candidates can compete to inspire us, not just tear down the other side. We can feel a real opportunity to set a dazzling new course for our nation, or embrace the best of what’s already working.

We all have circles of influence, people we talk to, work we do. In the final days of this campaign, let’s use our voices to remind each other about who we really are, what really matters, and why.

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