With the official campaign for the Voice to Parliament now in full swing, the ABC is asking people to report any possible misinformation so it can be investigated. This includes videos, letters, flyers, posters, texts or voicemails.
The ABC investigations team will fact check the information and make public any inaccuracies or incorrect claims. In our August e-news, we reported on the ABC fact check of the Yes/No campaign pamphlets distributed by the Australian Electoral Commission (AEC).
The debate around the referendum on 14 October has already been beset by misinformation and competing claims. The ABC has debunked three recent claims.
Claim: Plenty of “Voice” already
A list of 55 organisations which supposedly already provide First Nations people with sufficient “voice” is currently being circulated by No campaigners. However, many are no longer in existence – including the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission abolished in 2005 – while others, such as the Assembly of First Nations, is a Canadian organisation with no connection to Australia.
Claim: Links to US “steal” rhetoric
Some No campaigners are arguing that the referendum process is rigged or open to voter fraud, with some using social media hashtags such as #StoptheSteal and #RiggedReferendum, which link back to Trumpian claims of stolen elections.
The AEC has been forced to make several statements to assure voters that this referendum is being run in the same way as those in recent decades – including not accepting crosses on ballot forms.
Claim: No campaigner, Warren Mundine, once supported a Voice
Some Yes campaigners have tried to use previous statements by Warren Mundine to argue that he used to support a national Voice to Parliament. However, the ABC has established that Mundine has remained in favour of local rather than national consultative bodies.
Let the ABC know
You can let the ABC know about anything you think needs checking by clicking here.
If you wish or need to remain anonymous, you can choose the confidential tips page option.