Deadly Democracy

Australian Electoral Commission


The Australian political system lacks cultural safety for First Nations young people, who as a result are grossly underrepresented within our democratic system. Deadly Democracy aimed to empower First Nations young people to use their vote as a way to demonstrate leadership and to advocate for themselves and their community.

What we did

YLab designed and delivered a two-day workshop to equip young First Nations leaders with the resources, skills and networks to better understand and influence the democratic process. The workshops were attended by 22 young people across Australia, including Broome, Port Augusta and Townsville. It was delivered through a hybrid model with some participants participating online and some in person, allowing for engagement in regional locations.


The Deadly Democracy Program provided me with the opportunity to learn more about myself in terms of the strengths that I possess and how to utilise someone else's strengths to mitigate my weaknesses. I think also having a deeper idea of how preference voting works is helpful and something worth sharing with people in my community.”
—Workshop participant

Deadly Democracy provided First Nations young people across the nation with an opportunity to engage with the democratic process in a culturally safe way. It was co-designed and co-delivered with First Nations people and provided 100+ hours of employment to our First Nations associates.

The team

We brought together a team of Associates and a Director, who came together to design with a background of diverse lived experience and expertise.

with Will Austin, Angel Towney, Franco Saliba & Alisha Geary.