What to do if you're on the losing side of the survey

At 10am on Wednesday the result of the $122 million same-sex marriage survey will be known, and Tasmanians on both sides of the issue are preparing for the outcome.

With an 80 per cent response rate the government’s question on whether the law should be changed to allow same-sex couples to marry could be emphatically answered. 

Some opponents of same-sex marriage have conceded the survey is likely to return a “yes” vote.

Mental health service, ReachOut, has experienced a 40 per cent surge in young people accessing help since the same-sex marriage postal survey began.

ReachOut Australia chief executive Jono Nicholas said the survey could produce problems in the community.

“Regardless of [Wednesday’s] result, some Australians will be disappointed with the outcome, so please be respectful of how others may be feeling,” he said.

“Trolling or gloating will only continue to divide the community.

“If you’re anxious about the result, then take steps to ensure you’re in a supportive environment, or consider stepping out for some fresh air or just taking a minute.”

Mr Nicholas said ReachOut.com would be releasing additional support content over the coming days to assist people to cope with the survey result, and any resulting debate and hate that may follow.

Labor’s Bass MHR Ross Hart will meet with party members and same-sex marriage support workers.

“I’m planning to have brunch to hopefully celebrate a positive result,” he said. 

Mr Hart was reluctant to predict the result.

“The short answer is I don’t know and I wouldn’t want to put the mockers on a ‘yes’ result,” he said. 

“I’m hopeful there will be a strong and positive result.”

Mr Hart called on the government to progress its legislative agenda in an effort to have same-sex marriage legalised by the end of the year if a “yes” vote prevails.

Liberal senator Eric Abetz is hoping for a “no” result on Wednesday but promised to vote with the state result.

“I will be guided by the electors of Tasmania who have put their faith in me to represent them,” he said. 

“Regardless of the outcome of the plebiscite, I am absolutely confident that the view of the people will be reflected in the Parliament.”

While most polling predicts a yes vote will prevail, Griffith University researchers suggested there could be a narrow "no" victory, based on an analysis of Australian tweets about same-sex marriage posted last month

From the government’s perspective, a “no” result would mean same-sex marriage was off the table for the foreseeable future.

A Coalition for Marriage spokesman said the group was also preparing for the announcement.

“The Coalition for Marriage Tasmania team will be getting together in Hobart on Wednesday morning to reflect on the marriage poll outcome and to hold a media conference to express our thoughts,” he said. 

“In coming weeks we will be holding thank you events around the state for the hundreds of volunteers in Tasmania who have helped us with grassroots campaigning – doorknocking, phone calling, banner waving etc.”