COVID-19 safety measures

The next federal election is scheduled to occur on or before 21 May 2022.

We’re consulting regularly with health authorities and while we have some information available below, a lot will depend on the COVID environment at election time.

The voting process

The majority of voters will be able to cast your vote either in-person at an AEC voting centre or via post. Electoral laws do not provide for online voting.

There will be an early voting period leading up to election day and we encourage everyone to plan your vote carefully once the election timetable is known.

Safety measures at a voting centre will not be too different to many other essential in-person activities. However, they will inevitably slow down the process, so please be kind to our polling staff.

At the polling place - Hygiene officers, Social distancing, Increased polling officials, Regular cleaning of voting centres, Check-in for contact tracing, Venue capacity limits- where required, Hand sanitiser, Venue capacity limits, Masks where required

Click on the image to view the safety measures in place at AEC voting venues.

Voting services will be open to enrolled Australians for the 2022 federal election, regardless of their vaccination status. In addition, the AEC will not be requiring proof of vaccination for political participants who are campaigning or scrutineering. We do not have the power to do so.

However, the AEC’s temporary election workers - our polling officials - will be required to be vaccinated against COVID-19 as a condition of employment.


While we’ll continue to engage with health authorities, mobile voting teams will likely not be able to visit all aged care facilities or hospitals given the higher COVID-19 risk in these settings.

During the election people in these facilities will be able to apply for a postal vote or visit a nearby in-person voting centre. The AEC will have teams in regular contact with relevant facilities to provide support.

Mobile voting in remote areas of Australia will continue wherever possible with COVID-19 safety measures in place. A limited number of other mobile voting teams will continue to provide services where voters are not able to get to a polling place and/or where postal voting is determined to be inadequate, such as those experiencing homelessness.

The option available to most Australians overseas will be to vote via post. While a small number of in-person overseas voting centres are available, these services will likely be dependent on the number of Australians in a particular country and the local COVID-19 environment.

All election participants are responsible for ensuring they comply with health directions when campaigning, especially outside of a voting centre or other high-traffic area.

While electoral laws do not regulate such behaviour, the AEC is communicating with registered political parties and candidates regarding their responsibilities.

COVID-19 safety measures will also be implemented in AEC offices, at declaration of candidate nomination events, for transport arrangements and during the count.

This will mean counting will take longer than usual. The anticipated increase in postal and other early votes will also affect the speed of the count.

Changes?

We will continue to consult closely with health authorities throughout the federal election. If any changes to voting services are required, we will communicate with voters as quickly and clearly as possible.

Further information

Updated: 19 January 2022
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