Because you can
If you’re over 18 and a Canadian citizen and live here, you can vote in the Guelph municipal elections.
Fortunately, the right to vote in Canada is not tied to land ownership, but to citizenship. Don’t be put off by politicians who talk about ‘taxpayers’. If you’re here, one way or another, you’re paying taxes. You pay property taxes in the city through your rent and with every local purchase – because part of what you are paying for pays the overhead that pays the taxes.
Because its in your best interests
Think Guelph city politics don’t matter to you?
Here are some of the issues that have been debated in this election and are going to be showing up (yet again) at City Hall:
- Parks and trails
- Garbage and recycling
- Housing affordability
Your next City Council will be deciding these issues and more – and they are the things that affect everyday quality of life.
If you want your interests addressed, you have to show an interest.
Tenants’ voices can protect rental housing.
The next City council will vote on affordable housing strategy, including new and secondary units. One issue that has not been addressed is how to protect existing rental stock while we already have low vacancy numbers, and housing affordability continues to deteriorate.
Because you should
Voting is easy, doesn’t take a lot of time and it makes you feel good about being Canadian. Voting is the one thing you are asked to do every four years or so to keep democracy alive.
Voter turnout in Ward 2 in the last election was 48% – which was the highest in the city – and that was with online voting. Overall, city turnout was 45%. Demographically, only 26% of the votes were cast by people under 39. This means that City politics is decided in the majority by homeowners age from 40 to 100 or more. (You can see the 2014 voter statistic data here.)
Here’s the when and where
Monday, October 22, 2018 between 10 a.m. and 8 p.m.
If you didn’t get a voter card in the mail, or the one that showed up at your door had the wrong name, you can vote with ID and something that has your Guelph address on it – it could be a utility bill, or anything from this long list (although please do not use your health card as ID for this or anything else – its a privacy risk).
In Ward 2 you can vote any of these handy locations:
Brant Avenue Public School 62 Brant Avenue
Ecole Guelph Lake Public School 595 Watson Parkway North
Evergreen Seniors Community Centre 683 Woolwich Street
First Baptist Church 255 Woolwich Street
New Life Christian Reformed Church 400 Victoria Road North
The Village of Riverside Glen 60 Woodlawn Road East
Trinity United Church 400 Stevenson Street North
Each location is accessible and has plenty of parking.
If you need a ride to the polls, please let me know – volunteers are standing by!