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'Vote Party' gets support of Electoral Commission


THE GREAT NZ VOTE PARTY


MEDIA RELEASE
24th October 2008

'Vote Party' gets support of Electoral Commission


Youth encouraged to Party, then Vote

A radical new cross-political party initiative, the Great New Zealand Vote Party, kicked off this week with a nation-wide TV, Radio and Street Poster advertising campaign. This first ever initiative of its type in New Zealand has won the support of the Electoral Commission.

Peter Northcote, Communications Manager, Electoral Commission, said "We're behind the Vote Party because it's a community initiative celebrating the Election and New Zealand's democracy in a fun way. Younger voters can define Election Day in a way that suits them, and not what others tell them it is, or should be. They have the chance to mark Election Day and encourage their peers to vote. Seeing voting as relevant, worthwhile, and easy to do – along with a bit of peer pressure – will help encourage young people to start a life-long voting habit."

The idea is get more young people to vote, positioning Election Day as an event to celebrate. Young people can register their party or daytime event on the competition website www.voteparty.co.nz and be in the draw to win DJ Mikey Havoc at their event.

For the first time in New Zealand, youth wings of six political parties and NZUSA have got together with the aim of encouraging more young people to engage in the political process. There are nearly 195,000 first time voters in this year's election, but 18 to 25 year olds are less likely to vote.

Mikey Havoc, Vote Party Spokesperson said, "This is a great way to get young people engaged in the elections. Why shouldn't democracy be something fun to celebrate? We want to get people to the polls and to party. Check out our website and be in to win ME!"

The Great New Zealand Vote Party is not only using the usual advertising on TV, radio and a national poster campaign but is also utilising social networking websites, like Bebo and Facebook. The youth wings of the political parties also means it has an established youth network to spread the message.

The initiative is sponsored by Phantom Billstickers, AltTV, BNet radio network, the New Zealand University Students' Association and the New Zealand Electoral Commission.

ends

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