This year on Saturday November 8 there's a General Election. Elections are your chance to have your say over the laws that affect your life, so it's really important you exercise your right to vote.
Because the right to vote is so important there are protections in law to make sure you are given paid time off if your work on election day interferes with your ability to vote.
If you are unlikely to be able to visit a polling booth on election day there is also provision for you to cast a special vote in advance.
Paid time off to vote
If you have not had a reasonable opportunity to vote on election day before starting work you are entitled to paid leave to vote. Your employer must release you no later than 3pm for the remainder of the day.
If you are required to work after 3pm for the purpose of carrying out any essential work or service you are entitled to two hours paid leave to vote at a reasonable time earlier in the day.
Casting a special vote
If your work means you are unable to get to a polling booth in your electorate on election day (for example if you work on an oil rig or an aeroplane) you are entitled to cast a special vote in advance. For more information about special votes visit www.elections.org.nz or call the Union Support Centre on 0800 1 UNION.
Don't forget to enrol!
But remember, if you don't enrol your vote won't count. Enrolling is easy - just visit any PostShop, call 0800 36 76 56, text your name and address to 3676, or visit www.elections.org.nz.
If you have any questions or problems enforcing your right to vote please call the EPMU toll-free on:
0800 1 UNION / 0800 186 466