VIC AEC Privacy Question - Help?

Discussion in 'Other/General Law Forum' started by Mike Love, 3 February 2019.

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  1. Mike Love

    Mike Love Well-Known Member

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    Hi guys,

    I have a tricky one... I am in the process of registering a Federal political party through the AEC.

    We need to have 500 certified members from the electoral role to register.

    The AEC told us that they will need to verify many by hand, as they don't match up, etc. They stated that if we fall short of the 500, they will not tell us which ones don't match up with the electoral role, and that we just have to submit another list of 500 members. (We cannot just add another 20 names)

    They cited the Privacy Act as the reason why they can't tell us which details are not correct - even though this is our list that we gave to them!

    What if we don't trust them to do their job - how would we ever know if they were dodgy?!

    Does anyone know if that sounds right about the privacy law and using our own list?

    Thanks!
     
  2. Rod

    Rod Lawyer
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    Sounds right to me. Otherwise by default they tell you which ones are correct. There'd be nothing stopping criminals fishing for details they shouldn't have.

    Get 1,000 names and addresses to be sure, to be sure.
     
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  3. Tim W

    Tim W Lawyer
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    Loosen your tin foil helmet, friend.
    If you don't trust them, then that's all on you.

    It is the height of misguided vanity
    to think yourself important enough
    to be worth conspiring against.
     
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  4. Mike Love

    Mike Love Well-Known Member

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    Thanks Rod for your constructive comment - however, they only allow you to submit 550 members' details.

    My apologises Tim - of course the Government are to be trusted implicitly, just like smartarse lawyers.
     
  5. Tim W

    Tim W Lawyer
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    In this, as in all matters of Administrative Law, the onus is on the applicant (that's you)
    to provide information that is true and correct.
    You haven't.
    If you had, then you would have proceeded further along the path of registration.
    Either all the way to completing registration, or at least, until another error was found.
    You are required to provide 500 true and correct names and related details.
    They check against the roll (and they can data match if the think it necessary).
    To give you a list of those names and/or other information,
    the truth and/or correctness, and or/eligibility of which they dispute,
    would be to reveal information they hold about those individual members.
    There are a number of circumstances where the AEC can reveal voter details.
    However, facilitating an application to register a party (such as by telling you which names are in some way deficient) is not one of them.
    For the benefit of later readers (since I assume that you have read it yourself),
    information about the the tests applied to membership can be found here.
     
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  6. Rob Legat - SBPL

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    Let's also not forget the admittedly unspoken aspect of the process.

    You need 500 members who are entitled to enrolment on the Commonwealth electoral roll. As part of assembling those numbers, you'll need to check:
    - Their age, to ensure they're over 18;
    - Their citizenship;
    - Having lived at their current address for at least one month; and, possibly
    - If they don't fit the above, their special category for exemption.

    This doesn't mean you just collect 500 names. You need to vet each of these people to make sure they meet the requirements. I suggest that's more than 'taking their word for it'. I also suggest that's what the AEC is looking for as well.
     
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