Hello to our listeners after our two-week hiatus (read: school hellhole/abyss) from the podcast. We are BACK and are here to give you some tools to help you make your decision in your municipal election on October 22nd (tomorrow!).
What follows is our formula – give yourself 30 minutes to sit down and do this TINY bit of research that will ensure your vote goes to the best place for YOUR priorities.
If you’re in Toronto, Know Your Vote T.O. has centralized some of the tools you need to make your decision, so go there now before you begin to help you navigate this crazy bullshit!
If you’re not in Toronto, DO NOT FRET, we’ve got your back with tips & tricks.
To the steps!
#1 Find your ward bro
- You’ll need to google “what is my ward” + your city/municipality’s name
- Some city websites have a search function where you can put in your postal code and it will spit out the information
- If your city’s website doesn’t have that (sry), it will have “ward maps”. To find your ward this way, you will need to open up the ward map for your whole city, find your area, and then if you can’t pinpoint if your street is in ward 1 or 2 because they are closely together, you just go back to the ward map page and open the ward 1 and 2 maps, which will give you a zoomed in view. Yuck, we know.
#2 Rate your issues from most to least important. Here are the issues municipal elections usually revolve around:
- Public transit
- School boards, which allocate funding for schools from the province and which are responsible for listening to and acting on the concerns of constituents/parents
- Local issues (e.g. bike safety, congestion)
- City services like
- Sewage LOL
- Residential roads
#3 Choose your mayoral candidate
- On your city website, there is a list of candidates registered as running for mayor – they SHOULD have the contact info and websites for these people in the list. We checked several municipalities’ websites for this, so google that shit!
- From the mayoral candidates’ websites, compare their stances on your most important issue (we have found a pen and paper are useful for this, or a spreadsheet).
- For example, if housing is your most important issue, you might look for language like “investment in affordable housing,” or innovative ideas like giving Homeowners Property Tax Rebates to convert basements and attics into living spaces.
- If more than one mayoral candidate has the same stance on your most important issue, compare their stances on your second most important issue, and so on.
#4 Choose your city councillor
- If you’re lucky, your mayoral candidate will have endorsed a city councillor in your ward! Yay! Of course, we recommend checking out their website if this is the case just to make sure that they aren’t advocating anything that you vehemently disagree with (who knows, maybe they want to turn all public parks into trash piles????????).
- If your chosen mayoral candidate didn’t endorse a candidate for city councillor in your ward, you’ll need to google the list of registered city councillor candidates + the name of your ward, and do the same thing you did for your mayoral candidate! Don’t get stressed out, just skim for that one issue that you decided was important to you! You can do it – it’s chill. It is a very chill thing to you.
#5 Choose your school board trustee
- Your city councillor candidate should have endorsed a school board trustee candidate because that’s the easiest way for them to both get support, but if they didn’t, do as for you did for your mayoral candidate and * EXPRESS * YOUR * CREATIVITY * THROUGH * YOUR VOTE CHOICE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
#6 GO TO THE POLLS
- FIGURE OUT WHAT TIME YOU’RE GONNA VOTE – remember you’re entitled to time off work to do this!
- MAKE US PROUD/SEND US YOUR Q’S WE LOVE YOU XOOXXOXOXOXO GOSSIP GIRL
And finally, some news from the last couple weeks to have on your radar:
UN CLIMATE CHANGE REPORT: Hey guys!! We have until 2030 to prevent the dangerous destabilization of Earth’s climate – less than 12 years from now, according to a new report from the United Nations..
Lol cool so we’ll just go set ourselves on fire now!!! But for realz, the only way we can stop this is to elect some people that are gonna do something about this, so make sure you do that.
Here’s the episode of Family Compact about Climate Change and corporations we mention in the podcast, which has a comprehensive breakdown of the report and possible solutions that will both reduce carbon emissions and redistribute wealth.
The title pretty much says it all, but in addition to this, sexual assault centres across the province, which were waiting on an increase in funding from the government promised to them by the Liberals, have been told that their programs are now “under review.”
And you can buy it online and in stores across the country! Rejoice! On a very serious note, however, this legalization act requires a very close look at amnesty for people who have criminal records relating to cannabis possession.
From NOW Toronto:
“… In Toronto, Black men are three times more likely to be charged with simple possession of marijuana than white men. What’s needed now, say lawyers and academics who’ve recently launched the Campaign for Cannabis Amnesty, is an amendment to Bill C-45 that will grant pardons to those who have been arrested for simple possession.”
While the federal government intends to issue pardons for cases of possession of 30 grams or less (as that will be legal as the new recreational legalization), they are not issuing record expungements or amnesty for these individuals. Having a criminal record greatly affects a person’s ability to get a job and travel, among other things, so this is something we’ll be looking closely at in the coming months.
We’ll be taking a short break after the municipal elections to ~breathe~ and then we’ll hit the ground running some time in November for our third and longest season yet, which will revolve around federal politics in preparation for the federal election in October 2019!
Kate & Tara