A Collegiette’s Guide to Voting

Election season is in full swing and, whether you’ve thought about it or not, the time to vote is right around the corner. For some, the October 19th federal election will be the first time voting, or voting away from home, so we’ve compiled some tips to make the process as easy as possible.

Familiarize yourself with the parties

The four major parties in Canada are Liberals, Conservatives, NDP, and Green. If you don’t know what party best suits you, there are numerous resources online that can help you get a feel for what each party stands for. Make sure you know and understand the parties’ platforms as well as what they are campaigning for and against. Vote Compass  is a survey run by CBC that gives you a percentage of how much you agree with each of the parties. Maclean’s has a similar survey that allows you to choose between policies and bases your results off of which parties policies you agree with most.

Register

One of the biggest issues that young people have with voting is figuring out whether or not they’re already registered. Elections Canada has made it really easy to register to vote this year; you can do it online here. You can also check to see if you’re already registered and can change your address. 

Decide when and where to vote

Although the election is on Monday October 19th, advanced polls are available over Thanksgiving weekend (October 9th-12th) from noon to 8:00pm, which means if you want to vote in or close to your hometown while on break instead of at school, you can. If you don’t know where your advance polling station is, you can check on your voter registration card or on the Elections Canada website. If you plan on voting on October 19th in Waterloo, you can vote right in the Concourse.

Make sure you have all the required ID and documents

When you vote, you need to have valid government ID. The full list of acceptable ID can be found here. If your ID doesn’t have your current address on it, you will need to bring something that does, like a lease agreement or utility bill. You also need to bring your voter registration card.

Vote

According to Elections Canada, in the last federal election, only 40.5% of people aged 18-21 voted. Young voters have the power to make a huge difference in the election. On October 19th, go exercise your right to vote. Help make a difference in our country. If we don’t, who will?

Make sure your voices are heard, collegiettes!