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Australian-based voters targeted by Greens

When New Zealand elects a new Government on November 27, votes from Kiwis living in Australia may nudge it in a Green direction.

The Green Party has been campaigning in Sydney and Melbourne in past months to pick up the votes of some of the 330,000 New Zealanders living in Australia.

This follows the novel and high-profile launch earlier this year of former Wellington City Councillor Celia Wade-Brown as the Green's list candidate in London.

Green Party Campaign Co-manager Christine Dann said that if people living overseas have been back to New Zealand in the past three years they are entitled to vote.

Ms Dann returned this week from a week-long trip to Sydney where she organised 10,000 leaflets to be distributed around 'kiwi-rich' suburbs in Sydney and Melbourne and posters to be put up around parts of Sydney, including one saying, 'Kiwi voters enrol now to vote on November 27. Vote Green or the Kiwi's stuffed'.

Green Party Justice Spokesperson Nandor Tanczos began the Green's trans-Tasman campaigning in August when he visited Melbourne and Tasmania.

The trips have been important in increasing an awareness of Green politics as a global movement, Ms Dann said.

New Zealanders are the largest group of foreigners migrating to New South Wales (19 per cent for the past three years).

"A lot of them are young people who have left home to get a job, or a better job, or because they owe huge student debts," Ms Dann said.

"We don't want them to abandon their home - we want them to use their vote to help make New Zealand a better place and to help elect a government which, with Green policies, can help put New Zealand back on track."

ends



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