Council Elections 2012
BE A COUNCILLORBecoming a councillor provides an exciting opportunity to make a difference to your local community.
Our local communities are diverse but women, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, people with a disability and young people are under-represented on local councils.
In NSW a Candidate Diversity Strategy is being implemented to attract a more demographically diverse range of candidates to stand for election at the local government ordinary elections in September 2012.
This webpage contains information to assist people considering standing for election, particularly people from under-represented groups.
Why a Candidate Diversity Strategy? Across NSW the demographic make up of elected councils does not generally reflect the make up of the communities they represent:
- just over a quarter (27%) of councillors are women (approximately half of the population is women)
- the most common age group of councillors is 50-59 years, followed by 60-69 years (the median age of the population is approximately 37)
- 1.6% of all councillors identified as Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander (2.2% of the NSW population is Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander)
- the first language spoken at home by most councillors is English (26% of the NSW population speaks a language other than English at home)
- 3% of all councillors identified as having a disability (4% of the NSW population have identified a need for assistance with self-care, mobility and/or communication)
- a typical councillor is male, over 50, speaks English at home, is a professional, self employed or a primary producer and has previously served on council.
Successful councils reflect their community’s diversity.
ResourcesThe following resources have been produced as part of the Candidate Diversity Strategy:
- Thinking about becoming a councillor? A guide for candidates in NSW
- Stand for your community. Be a councillor brochure
- Stand for your community. Be a councillor brochure for women
- Stand for your community. Be a councillor brochure for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people
- Stand for your community. Be a councillor brochures in community languages
The brochure is available in 15 community languages. To download a brochure in another language click here
- Candidate Information Seminars organised by the Election Funding Authority are taking place at various locations across NSW during May, June and July 2012.
The Division of Local Government and Australian Local Government Women's Association (ALGWA) will be participating in the Seminars to assist potential candidates make an informed decision about standing for election in September 2012. This includes information about local government, the role, responsibilities and key relationships of councillors and the support available to councillors to help them in their role.
The ALGWA presentation aims to attract more women to stand for election and provides information about the specific support they offer to women in local government including advocacy, advice, networking and training.
For more details about Candidate Information Seminar dates and locations near you, click here
Further informationThe links below provide further useful information:
- NSW Electoral Commission
- Electoral Funding Authority
- Local Government Association of NSW and Shires Association of NSW
- Australian Local Government Women’s Association
- Promoting Diversity in Local Government webpage
- Directory of Information for Councillors
- Directory of Policy Advice for Councils