"Passport Doesn't Matter" Election Starts in Vienna

Lifestyle & TravelMore+ ♦ Published: August 18, 2020; 12:17 ♦ (Vindobona)

About 30% of the population in Vienna is not allowed to vote in the election on October 11 as they do not have an Austrian passport. Therefore, "SOS Mitmensch" organizes again this year the "Passport doesn't matter" election where non-citizens can symbolically vote for their favourite party.

Non-citizens can vote in an symbolic election until October 6. / Picture: © Wikimedia Commons / Rama / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.5

On October 11, the Vienna City Council and State Parliament election will take place and from 1,897 million (2019) inhabitants only 1,363 million people are officially allowed to vote.

Around 30% of the Viennese above the eligible age do not possess an Austrian passport and are therefore not allowed to vote for any of the candidates. About a half of those people have been living in Vienna for 10 years or longer.

As these people make up a major part in the population, "SOS Mitmensch" brought the "passport doesn't matter" (dt. "Pass Egal Wahl") into life. This symbolic election is intended to raise the awareness of a possible different political view from people with other nationalities.

The organizer wants to give a voice to people who have their center of life in Vienna and are therefore directly affected by the local politics. In general, they are pleading for an official right to vote for anyone who has been living in Austria for 3 years.

Many celebrities are supporting the symbolic election. One of those is the German author and comedian Dirk Stermann who has been living in Austria for more than 30 years.

The participation is possible through a postal ballot and the vote needs to be send to SOS Mitmensch until October 6, 2020 the latest to be counted. Further information can be found here.