You’ve probably heard this speech several times already from your parents, grandparents, distant aunt, uncle you’ve never met, professor, and Uber driver, but we’re going to go over it again because it’s so important: Go vote!
The federal election on Oct. 21 is quickly approaching and you have no excuse to not cast your ballot.
For one, it’s never been easier to make an informed choice when you hit the polls. Information on political candidates is everywhere, along with in-depth breakdowns of each parties’ policy plans and visions for the future.
If you’re still undecided on which political party best aligns with your views, CBC’s Vote Compass is a great place to start. CBC also has another feature breaking down each of the parties’ positions on some of the major issues of the election, including the carbon tax, climate change, education, and gun control.
If you’re looking for more information on local candidates in the Ottawa-Vanier riding, we’ve got you covered. We sent interview requests to the candidates and spoke with each one that responded, asking them a set list of questions to get a sense of their plans. Read those six interviews here.
‘I’m not a political person,’ is no excuse to not vote in the election either — it’s just lazy. In one way or another, the next four years in Canadian federal governance are going to have a direct impact on you and your loved ones. Don’t throw your chance to influence that impact in the trash.
While information abounds on making an informed vote that best aligns with your views, so do different methods of voting. Election day is still technically more than a week away but advanced polls are open through to Monday at various locations across the city.
You can also head to any Elections Canada office before this Tuesday at 5 p.m. and cast your vote there through the special ballot process (on the University of Ottawa campus, this ran from Oct. 5-9). There are 10 Elections Canada offices spread out across Ottawa and Gatineau, and the closest one from the U of O campus is just a quick walk, bus ride, or drive away in Vanier.
You don’t even have an excuse if you’re overseas — Elections Canada also allows people to vote from outside the country through the special ballots process. You just need to apply online or in-person at one of their offices or an embassy by Tuesday.
The point is, you have the chance to make a massive change in this election and your vote matters. For the first time ever, people born between 1980 and 2000 will make up the largest chunk of voters in this election, according to Abacus Data.
While people aged 18-24 still had the lowest turnout of any voting bloc in the 2015 federal election, according to Elections Canada, our turnout jumped from 38.8 per cent in the 2011 election to 57.1 per cent. That’s an increase of 18.3 per cent.
On Oct. 21, we can keep that trend of increasing voter turnout among young people alive. This is our future and your democratic right — don’t let them go to waste.
Editorials are written by the Fulcrum’s seven-person editorial board and represent the views of the board.