Lobbying politicians can seem daunting, especially for the uninitiated. As part of their wider campaign to gain an effective modern slavery act, Stop The Traffik are offering ‘lobby labs’.
Lobby labs go over the essential skills involved in reaching out to politicians and meeting with them.
Two sessions are currently scheduled, including one on 10 September in Padstow and another on 23 September in Gosford.
Stop The Traffik’s Carolyn Kitto told Insights that the lobby labs would give people what they needed to lobby effectively.
“Many people need the confidence to know how to contact their MPs and Senators so Stop The Traffik is running Lobby Labs to help people know how to contact their Parliamentarians, how to make an appointment and how to talk, or write to their local members and Senators,” Ms Kitto said.
The lobbying efforts come at a key time in Australian politics, with a new prime minister, and an election due by May 2019.
For the Modern Slavery Act, Stop the Traffik want to see a bipartisan commitment to upholding the act, an independent slavery commissioner, and penalties for noncompliance.
These measures would require amendments to the current act, which has been introduced in the House of Representatives, and will soon be debated. After it passes the House, it will make its way to the Senate, where Labor, the Greens, The Centre Alliance, and Senators Hinch and Storar support amendments.
“Stop the Traffik has been working hard this last 18 months on the Modern Slavery Act,” Ms Kitto said.
“It has the potential to affect the lives of thousands and potentially even millions of people – if we get a robust act.
“Politicians need to hear from the Australian people that this is what they want. Particularly those in swinging Coalition seats.”
The first lobbying lab takes place at Padstow Baptist Church (23 Cahors Road, Padstow) on Monday, 10 September at 7:30pm. Registration is available here.
The second takes place at Christchurch Anglican Church (3 Mann St, Gosford) on Sunday 23, September at 12 Noon. Register here.
Jonathan Foye is Insights’ Editor