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Video: Municipal election process overwhelming busy Langara students

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Many students say they don't have time to research candidates and the election process is overwhelming.
Many students say they don’t have time to research candidates or plan to vote on Nov. 15 (Photo Alice D’Eon)

Reported by Alice D’Eon

Students have busy schedules, and for many, figuring out who, where and how to vote in the Vancouver municipal election on Nov. 15 may be a daunting task.

Despite the many layers of information for potential voters to sift through, the process of casting a vote need not be exhausting or intimidating.

Paul Prosperi, Langara political science department chair said it’s a reality that voters have a limited amount of time to research all the candidates and their platforms. What’s important is that “you do the best you can with the time that you have,” Prosperi said.

22-year-old Wince Leung has been exercising her right to vote since she turned 18. (Photo Alice D'Eon)
22-year-old Wince Leung has been exercising her right to vote since she turned 18. (Photo Alice D’Eon)

While it’s important for potential voters to do a little work online to figure out where the candidates stand on a range of issues, Prosperi said voters should give themselves a bit of a break.

Some offices will be of greater interest to voters than others, Prosperi said.

“So you can focus on the ones you want to focus on. So if council and the mayoral election is what matters to you, then you check that out,” he said.

It’s easier than you think

Voting times and locations aren’t as restrictive as people may think.

According to The Voter’s Guide to Local Elections in B.C., the official election day in Vancouver is Saturday, Nov. 15. Voters can go to any one of 120 voting stations throughout the city and vote.

Additionally, there are eight advance-voting days from Nov. 4 to 12 (excluding Nov. 11) where voters can go to any one of eight voting stations from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Wince Leung, 22, a student in Langara’s bachelor of business administration program, has been voting since she turned 18.

“It’s not enough to just sit back and assume that everything will be taken care of, especially because we’re a democratic country. We should have our voices heard whenever possible,” Leung said.

Have your voice heard

In order to vote in the Vancouver municipal election, a voter must be a Canadian citizen and at least 18 years old. A voter must also be a B.C. resident for at least six months and a resident of Vancouver for at least 30 days before the election.
Voters must present two pieces of identification, one containing a signature.

According to the voter guide, casting a vote typically takes no more than 10 minutes.
For more information visit vancouver.ca/vote

Langara students talk about what’s holding them back from voting and identify the issues that matter to them. Video by Ash Kelly and Mike Hodder.

 

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