By Camille Aubin
camille@columbiavalleypioneer.com

Nearly one month after Premier John Horgan terminated his minority government agreement with B.C. Green Party, and called voters to head to the polls on October 24th, the 2020 snap election is here.

In our electoral district this year, three candidates of different affiliations have participated in the campaign: Samson Boyer (Green Party), Nicole Cherlet (NDP) and incumbent Doug Clovechok (Liberal Party). B.C. party leaders are John Horgan (NDP), Andrew Wilkinson (Liberal Party) and Sonia Furstenau (Green Party). An excellent way to get to know each candidate is to listen to the debate or at least a summary of it.

One of the main reasons cited for low voter participation during recent elections is that people don’t have time to vote on election day due to their responsibilities at home and work. It shouldn’t be that way this time. Advance polls have been open since October 15th in many locations in our area. There was also the possibility of voting by mail. If you still haven’t exercised your right to vote, there’s still plenty of time. Carve out a spot in your schedule to go do it; this is important. If you are an employer, be part of the solution, and consider releasing your team for a short period during the day, so your staff have time to exercise their right to vote.

Are you happy with the actions of our last government? Go out and make your point. Are you unsatisfied? Again, go out and make your point. This is the time to support the candidate who you feel meets your needs and your values, the one who thinks best meets the specific needs of our community. Make your voice heard in these elections. Democracy and your say are essential.

You have the power to decide which values to prioritize by voting for the party and representative of your choice for our region. Voting is your chance to have a say on the issues that matter to you. This right belongs to all of us. Take the time to inform yourself – on different platforms, from sources, and for each of the candidates – so that you can make an informed choice when you vote.

It’s your money. Do you know how your taxes are being used? Maybe not. Voting is deciding how it will be spent, depending on what is important to you. What do you value more: funding for daycare, more priority for business, or more focus on the environment? This is something you can choose with your vote.

Not taking the time to go and vote means letting others decide the future of our province, region, community, neighbourhood, and our loved ones. That decision affects all of us in our everyday life.

There are protocols in place for your safety during the pandemic; election workers are trained on safe workplace guidelines. You can wear your mask if you wish to do so.

Every single vote matters. Go vote on election day, October 24th.