October 12th, 2017

Why You Need To Vote On Oct. 16

On September 30, Edmonton was in shock with the news that a terror attack had occurred in the city.

That night, 30-year-old Abdulahi Sharif drove a car into a police constable and stabbed him. He later ran into four pedestrians, causing serious injuries.

Edmontonians, Albertans and all of Canada couldn’t believe the news.

“It is vital now that we not succumb to hate, that we not be intimidated by violence, and that we respond with the loving strength of this whole community in support of the victims, and our brave first responders,” said Mayor Don Iveson. “We will not be divided.”

However, not all felt the same way.

After the attack Karen Draper, who is running as a Calgary public school board trustee in Wards 12-14, posted her thoughts about the incident on Facebook.

“LGBTQ are you too dumb to see the terrorist attack in Edmonton is your fault as well.”

The post received a huge backlash on social media with thousands of comments.

She said in a statement to Global News  that the choice to post her views was ‘somewhat in response to  the private and public slandering I have had from the LGBT community over my opposition to the GSA and SOGI123 curriculum.’

GSA stands for Gay Straight Alliances and the SOGI_123 curriculum is indented to help support LGBTQ students.

This is a prime example of why it is so important to get out and vote on Oct.16 no matter what part of Alberta you live in. Yes, Draper received a huge reaction on social media, but that will not mean anything if she is elected and gets to make policy decisions for Calgary students.

If you don’t vote, people with exclusive and discriminative views may have the chance to be elected and shape the way our major cities run.

And the last election saw low voter turn outs with around 39 per cent in Calgary and 35 per cent in Edmonton. These numbers are much too low, so we thought we would answer common questions about what you need to vote.

How do I know if I am eligible to vote in the municipal election?

You must be at least 18 years old, be a Canadian citizen, have resided in Alberta for 6 consecutive months before election day and your place of residence must be located in the area on election day.

What do I need to have when I show up to vote?

You need to have one piece of valid identification. The list can be found here.

Do I get time off of work to vote?

Employees have the right to have three consecutive hours to cast their vote while the voting station is open. If the hours of the employee’s employment do not allow for three consecutive hours the employer must allow them additional time for voting.

Where is my voting station?

You can find them on the following websites

Calgary:  http://www.calgary.ca/election/Pages/information-for-voters/find-my-voting-station.aspx

Edmonton: https://www.edmonton.ca/city_government/municipal_elections/find-your-voting-station.aspx

Red Deer: http://elections.reddeer.ca/media/reddeerca/election/documents/City-of-Red-Deer-Voting-Stations.pdf

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