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Stationery in motion: Electoral Commission helps out rural schools

Drought- and bushfire-affected schools across rural New South Wales are benefitting from an Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) initiative to make sure unused stationery does not go to waste.

Four students holding blu-tack, clipboards, pens, sticky tape and first aid kits.

Student leaders, from left, Max, Joseph, Isabella and Saphira unpack some of the items donated to Dubbo Public School.

The AEC has arranged for nine pallets of election stationery to be distributed through the NSW Department of Education’s rural and regional offices.

The AEC’s Director of Supply Chain, Jay Rasmussen, said stationery from the 2019 federal election is still mostly brand new, and it will either not last until the next full federal election or is cheaper to purchase again than store.

“Running a manual event so large in scale means we are especially mindful of our footprint, so it is terrific to be able to work with agencies like the Education Department to ensure election stationery can be re-used,” Mr Rasmussen said.

Minister for Education Sarah Mitchell has welcomed the bonus.

“Schools are fully resourced with stationery, but those in areas of stress from the drought or bushfires will welcome any extra flexibility in their budgets created by the donation of additional products,” Ms Mitchell said.

“This is a great example of how a little inter-agency initiative and co-operation can go a long way.”

The supplies include reams of white and coloured paper, pens, pencils, calculators, highlighters, sticky tape, sticky notes and a range of other office supplies. More than 2,500 small first aid kits are also being distributed.

The AEC arranged to have the resources trucked to the Department of Education offices in Moree, Tamworth, Armidale, Grafton, Dubbo, Broken Hill, Wagga Wagga and Deniliquin, from where they are being distributed to local schools.

Delivery to the offices was undertaken free of charge by the AEC’s transport provider for the 2019 federal election, the Toll Group.

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