Regional polling places originally at risk of being closed set to be filled for election day, AEC confirms

All polling booths are set to be open across the country tomorrow. Picture: Karleen Minney
All polling booths are set to be open across the country tomorrow. Picture: Karleen Minney

The 76 regional polling places originally identified as being in danger of not opening on election day have now obtained the required staff.

In a late night announcement, the Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) has confirmed all polling places will be open for election day tomorrow, Saturday, May 21.

Electoral Commissioner Tom Rogers described the effort of the past few days to reach this position as "mammoth".

"If election day begun at 7pm tonight every single one of the 7,000 polling places we've planned for would open its doors," he said.

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"We cannot thank people enough - our colleagues across government and the community have stepped up to lend a hand, and Australians have stepped forward for democracy."

The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic is something Mr Rogers noted to be a challenge for the Electoral Commission.

"Our 105,000 workforce across Australia has had approximately 15 per cent turnover in the past week alone and this risk will continue tomorrow morning," he said.

"If some of the small number of people we've lined up to work at a local voting centre withdraw on the morning of the election, we may not have back ups available in that town."

Mr Rogers said of the 105,000 positions, they had more than 280,000 registrations of interest however "it's not evenly spread across the country".

"To voters, if there is a queue, remember to treat our staff with kindness. You wouldn't have a local polling place with them," he said.

This story All polling places will be open for election day: AEC first appeared on The Canberra Times.