November 23, 2018
Union volunteers campaign to keep the Liberals out
Victorian Trades Hall Council has been piloting new and innovative campaigns in the lead-up to the Victorian state election. Union volunteers came out in force for the world’s largest phone bank, the world’s largest barnstorm and one of Australia’s biggest rallies in history. Volunteers have also knocked on 10,825 doors to have persuasion conversations with people about the issues they care about.
Over the past week, 10,000 ‘misfortune’ cookies and 70,000 ‘Lucky Lobster’ scratchie cards were handed out to commuters across hundreds of Melbourne train stations. On Thursday Melbourne commuters were treated to MX-inspired newspapers reporting on key election issues including wage theft, industrial manslaughter legislation and aged care ratios.
Dancing lobsters have also been sighted across multiple Liberal Party events, and the party’s launch was graced with the attendance of 4meter tall inflatable lobster.
Campaigning stats in a nutshell:
- 11,757 hours of volunteer campaigning
- 6642 pledge commitments to put the Liberals last
- 19 hours spent lobster dancing
- 10,825 doors knocked
- 63,842 phone dials
- 349 train station handouts
- 139 street stalls
- Election day: 1000 volunteers at 82 voting centres,
Quotes attributable to VTHC Secretary Luke Hilakari:
“Trades Hall is all about experimenting, combining new technology, high-quality storytelling and the power of the thousands of people we have in our movement. We are at the cutting edge of campaigning around the world. This is our craft.
“We held one of the largest rallies in Australia’s history, with 170,000 people on the streets in October. We ran the world’s largest phone bank – with a total of 63,842 phone dials. That was nurses talking to people about health, teachers talking about education and so on. These are powerful, value-driven conversations and it’s something Conservative politicians have to fake. Many have never had community-based jobs so they are disconnected from community needs.
“We also conducted the world’s largest “barnstorm”, where you assemble a crowd and mobilise them to take action. The inspiration was Bernie Sanders’ campaign. They perfected barnstorms on small scales. We tried that too, with groups of 50 or 60. But then we did it with over 1,000 union members all in the same room; that scale has never been done before and we got powerful results.
“The technology and the stunts are valuable but there’s still nothing more powerful than grassroots campaigning, where you’re having persuasive, face-to-face conversations with people. That’s why we’re also proud of our 10,825 doors knocked – we make the political, personal and we change the world, one conversation at a time. That’s what we do.”
For footage, high res photos and media comment call Edwina Byrne 0409017140
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