Tips for how to vote in the provincial election

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Photo by Safina Husein

Ontario’s provincial election, chiefly contested by the Liberals, Progressive Conservatives, New Democratic Party and Green Party, is going to take place on June 7. The event foreshadows the Ontario municipal elections occurring on October 22. 

The polls will be open for voting between 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Voter turnout in the 2014 election was 51 per cent. However, this is an optimistic figure when compared to under-24 voters, who made up a mere 34 per cent. 

With these concerning numbers, The Cord hopes to provide some information and tips on making the voting process more accessible, understandable and straightforward, to encourage everyone to do their part in June. 

Registering to Vote:

Using Elections Ontario’s website, you are able to quickly and easily register, update or confirm registration with the official Voters List. 

To update or add your information, you will need a piece of identification that has your name and current residential address. 

If you are 16 or 17, you can register as a future voter through the website as well. 

If you are living on campus for the summer, but aren’t from Waterloo, there are a few options available. 

You can choose to vote in the electoral district where you are currently residing or in the electoral district you are temporarily living in for school. 

In order to do this, you need to make sure you provide a document that proves your name and proof of residence and ensure you update your information through the website.

Where to Vote:

Once you are on the website, you will be required to enter your full name, date of birth and home/mailing address. 

The website will then tell you which electoral district you are in, giving further information on where and when to vote through a Voter Information Service website. 

The VIC will allow you to enter your postal code to determine your voting district, and give you a list of potential options to vote. This includes voting on election day, which will give you the closest voting location, address and a link to the local candidates, with an option to add it to your calendar. 

Advanced Voting:

If you are not able to vote the day of the election, the website even gives you the option to vote in advance, which opened on May 10. 

You can choose to vote in person the day before the election, through an early advance voting station or a returning office. 

The returning office gives voters the ability to use assistive voting technology, for issues of accessibility, or to update their voting information. 

Otherwise, you can also vote through the mail, through the use of a special ballot. 

If you cannot make it to a voting location before the election, you can download a voting application form to receive the special ballot. This must be done before June 1 at 6 p.m. and the ballot must be completed before June 7 at 6 p.m.   

With so many potential, accessible and easy ways to vote in the upcoming election, there is little reason that it should be put off.

 Voting is an imperative way to make sure that your beliefs, opinions and priorities are being heard and recognized by the province. 

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