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August 19, 2013 | by  | in Opinion |
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Campaigns Officer

Self-improvement can be hard. We all want to be better people, but sometimes the effort required to do things is just far too much.

I think a big part of improving yourself is about being mindful of the effects of your actions on other people, and listening with an open mind to people’s advice or criticism of your own behaviour. Within reason, try and listen with an open mind when people suggest you do things—it’s probably for your own good!

The student body at VUW is definitely in need of some self-improvement when it comes to participating in democracy. Voting only takes a couple of minutes, but can have an important effect on many aspects of your life.

Firstly, you should vote in the upcoming VUWSA by-election! Following the resignation of our Welfare Vice-President and Education Officer, we need to fill some spaces around our table of bureaucratic power. There’s also a chance to vote for a position on Publications Committee which has been vacant all year.

We’ll be having a candidates’ forum for the by-election this week, and polling will start from 9 am this Friday, 23 August, and will finish on Sunday 25 August at 5 pm. You’ll be sent an email with instructions on how to vote, and it will only take a few minutes.

Secondly, you should also vote in the upcoming Wellington local-government elections! Local government doesn’t get paid nearly as much attention as central government, yet local government has a huge effect on an average student’s life. Are you outraged that buses and trains in the Wellington region cost so much? Do you think it’s unfair that secondary-school students recently received a bigger discount while university students didn’t get anything? Are you sick of living in a cold, damp flat? Vote for candidates who are sympathetic to your concerns, and help show local-government politicians that students are a group to be reckoned with. If you want to hear directly from the politicians, and ask them some really tricky questions, VUWSA will be holding a local-government candidates’ forum on 25 September.

If you’re enrolled, you should get a voting pack in the mail, and you can vote between 20 September and midday on Saturday 12 October 2013. If you aren’t enrolled yet, don’t worry! You can enrol right up to the 11 October, but you’ll have to request special voting papers from a Council electoral officer. We’ll have some of these voting papers on hand at the candidates’ forum to make it nice and easy.

Good luck getting through the last week of the trimester before the break!

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