We know the next decade will contain political decisions that shape our future. As the only voice for communities and the climate, the Greens have a critical role to play - which means your feedback on how we’re doing and where we should go next has never been more valuable.
BY JESS PARKER
Australian Greens’ National Engagement Program Manager
his year our National Supporter Survey was designed to help inform our new Strategic Plan, and guide our actions in parliament for this electoral cycle and the following two (about nine years).
We know the next decade will contain political decisions that shape our future. The Greens have an important role to play as the only voice for communities and the climate – which means your feedback has never been more valuable.
We’re so thankful a record number of you – over 15,000 supporters – responded by filling in this year’s National Supporter Survey. You gave us your feedback, and shared your hopes and concerns. It was wonderful to read them in your own words.
It’s taken the team a few weeks to gather all the results and analyse them.
We’ve put a few highlights below. Looking at the volume and variety of results, it’s clear that your ideas and concerns are very diverse – we are a DIVERSE group of people! And yet collectively, we share this: we all care deeply about people and planet.
From next week, our member body consultations begin to finalise the Strategic Plan. These will be run by our party thinktank, the Green Institute.
Keep an eye out for emails from your state/territory about a workshop being run in your area, plus a number of online workshops in case you can’t make it in person.
We look forward to sharing the new Strategic Plan with you in the months ahead.
National Supporter Survey: Topline Results
When we asked you what is our purpose as a political party, the majority of you responded in this order of priority:
- To get enough Greens elected to influence politics for the better!
- To hold the balance of power and hold the government to account.
- To campaign to move the needle on important issues such as sustainability and social justice.
- To think of innovative new policy solutions to today’s problems.
- To one day have a Greens-led government.
Regardless of the mechanics of how we do it, the majority of you want the Greens to influence politics through the power we have of electing MPs.
We agree: the most effective parliament in living history was when the Greens held balance of power with a Gillard Labor Government. It’s the only time we’ve ever had real, world-leading climate action. We can do this again!
We asked how we should achieve our purpose, and you said:
- Win more federal lower house seats.
- Win more seats in state parliaments.
- Keep two senators in every state.
- Mobilise our supporters to campaign for important issues.
- Win more local council seats.
After our successful 2022 federal election, winning three new lower house seats and holding the balance of power in the Senate, you’re keen to see us increase our power here and focus on retaining – plus winning more!
We’ve got a brilliant plan already underway, called our revolutionary ‘continuous campaign’. We’ll keep sharing about it in the months ahead.
We asked you to respond to our previous strategic plan’s key goals:
The ‘Engage’ goal was about how we build a more diverse party and have more internal democracy so members feel empowered.
You think we are making good progress on this goal:
The ‘Create’ goal was about telling a compelling story with policies that resonate with voters, especially using media and technology.
The majority think we are making progress on this goal:
The ‘Win’ goal was about how we run our campaigns – we said we needed better campaign tools and strategies to encourage Greens supporters to get more involved.
You think we are making progress on this goal as well:
The ‘Secure’ goal was about how we fund our party through better fundraising, so we can campaign at a federal, state and local level.
You think we are making reasonable progress on this goal:
The ‘Strengthen’ goal was about how we govern our party - supporting and resourcing staff and volunteers, identifying risks and tackling them.
You think we are making slower progress on this goal:
We asked you which issues you believe are the most important for us to campaign on over the next two years, you said:
- Taking real action on the climate crisis
- Stopping new coal and gas mines
- Tackling the housing affordability crisis
- Protecting animals and the environment
- Working towards Treaty and First Nations justice
- Getting dental and mental healthcare into Medicare
- Cleaning up politics
- Making renting fairer
- Raising the rate of income support payments
- Reducing the cost of living
- Making TAFE and university free
- Building a strong economy
Your responses supported that climate and housing are two issues in the forefront of your mind. We’ll continue to campaign on both issues, and will keep you informed about ways you can get involved.
Looking back on when you first decided to support the Greens, why did you want to get involved?
We come from many different backgrounds, but we all share a deep and powerful concern for our planet, and those who call it home. You share our commitment to holding the major parties to account. And our optimism that the future can be good for everyone.
How do you currently support the Greens?
- I vote Green at elections
- I donate when I can
- I volunteer
- I am a Greens member
- I make weekly or monthly donations
The majority of respondents to this question all vote Green, with the second majority donors, followed by volunteers and then members. It is nice to see feedback from both our membership but also outside of it!
We asked you what you think the biggest barrier is for Greens supporters becoming members. You replied:
Thank you for your time and your honesty in our National Supporter Survey. You’ve helped us understand what your priorities are, and how we can do better to become the party that truly represents you.
We can’t do any of this without you. You are the living heart and soul of this movement. Now is our time to fight for our future – and to win!