For 40 years Jodie Benton hasn't been all that involved in politics. But the upcoming Voice referendum has been just the motivation she's needed to get out of her seat and into the street.
"The thought of waking up the day after the referendum to a country with a 'No' vote makes me really, really, really sad," the Dubbo local told the Daily Liberal.
"I haven't been involved in anything vaguely political to do with our governing system since I was 18, and I'm 58 now. It's taken 40 years for me to feel as motivated by an issue as I do now."
Ms Benton is one of the coordinators of the Dubbo for Yes group, part of the nationwide Yes23 campaign.
With the clock ticking until October 14, when Australia will go to the polls to vote on the Voice to Parliament, the Dubbo for Yes group are planning a number of high-visibility events across the local area.
"We've got a limited time now until the actual referendum day," Ms Benton said.
"It's vitally important, I think, that more and more people just see the messaging around their local area. It puts it front and centre of their minds. There's a lot of people who still don't know which way to jump.
"I think it's going to be a tough, tough battle. But I am optimistic. I do think that these six weeks are going to be powerful."
As well as sharing their perspective as to what benefits the Voice could have for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, Ms Benton said the group will be educating the community about the significance of a referendum.
"There's a lot of people who won't have ever even voted in a referendum before," she said.
"So I think there's a little bit of education to be done for people to understand exactly what a referendum is and how they work because they're quite complicated.
"It's not just a first past the post system with referendums, and it's not just a majority of people. You also have to get a majority of states. So, that has historically made referendums more challenging to get up."
Ms Benton will be urging voters to think for themselves, and do their own research, instead of being swayed by online "scare campaigns" or going into the referendum and voting along party lines.
"I'm very disappointed that the Liberal and National Party have come out and made this a political issue," she said.
"That, to me, is what has the potential to make the yes campaign more challenging because now people are starting to see it in terms of politics, not in terms of 'what do I think morally?'."
It's going to be a challenging road ahead for the 'Yes' campaign. The latest Newspoll shows support for the Voice has fallen to 38 per cent, while backing for the 'No' vote has risen to 53 per cent.
But Ms Benton is hopeful.
"I think that's one of the wonderful things about the Yes campaign is just the word 'yes'," she said.
"It's something you want to wear on your t-shirt and you want to put out in front of your house because, to me, it's sort of inclusive and embracing and it's optimistic and it's forward looking.
"It's such a positive, wonderful message. Yes, opens the door and no takes us nowhere."
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