Sun. May 9th, 2021

On Thursday, October 22nd, the History 12 students will make their way to each classroom at Notre Dame. They will set up a voting booth; they will be wearing masks and gloves; they will have the ballots and ballot boxes. It’s time to vote, ND.

By | Nina Stofati

On September 21st, Premier John Horgan announced that there will be a snap election in British Columbia; BC will be voting again on Saturday, October 24th. In light of this, Mr. Scott has organized a mock election led by his History 12 students in which everyone at Notre Dame will participate. Although the students are not yet eligible to vote, it is crucial that they have a basic understanding of why it is so important to participate in the elections, whether it’s at the municipal, provincial, or federal level. 

It is our civil duty to participate in each election. By not voting, or refusing to take it seriously, we could put the future of our riding, province or nation at risk. The in-school ‘mock’ election on October 22nd provides a perfect opportunity for students to do their research of all the official BC parties and treat it like a real election. 

In the riding of Vancouver-Hastings (the riding all Notre Dame students will be voting in), the following candidates have been nominated:

  1. Niki Sharma – BC NDP (New Democratic Party)
  2. Alex Read – BC Liberals
  3. Bridget Burns – BC Greens 
  4. Gölök Z Buday – Libertarian
  5. Kimball Cariou – Communist Party of BC

BC NDP Platform:

For years, the BC NDP’s have proven to be quite popular amongst voters in this riding. However, with the growing concern over tent cities and other prominent issues, this could change. Niki Sharma is focused on reconciliation with First Nations groups; providing cheaper child care by proposing $10/day child care; and finally, doing more for climate change by reducing carbon emissions. The NDP insists that they will listen to the people and put their partisan views aside.

BC Liberal Party Platform:

The BC Liberals are focused on a policy of economic recovery. Their plan includes: ending the ICBC monopoly to privatize auto-insurance companies, therefore, creating competition; scrapping PST for one year and impose a three percent rate after that; and similar to the NDP, the BC Liberals would like to provide $10/day childcare for families making under $65,000/year. The candidate nominated for the riding of Vancouver-Hastings is Alex Read.

BC Green Party Platform:

Bridget Burns has addressed the opioid epidemic and homelessness in her riding of Vancouver-Hastings. She has stated that she is tired of seeing her community suffer. The BC Green Party Leader, Sonia Furstenau has stated that she would like to transform BC’s economy and turn it into a “carbon neutral” one… The BC Greens have stated more than enough times that political leaders need to put their partisan views aside and focus on the interests of British Columbians.

BC Libertarian Party Platform:

Golok Z Buday is a strong believer in liberty for all and freedom of speech. He states that he would oppose police brutality because “a police officer who is a criminal is worse than a criminal…” Buday has also stated that he wants “less overreaching government and more fun…” His ideological beliefs are quite scattered on the political spectrum so it is difficult to definitively state where he stands. Golok has described himself as an “Anti Authoritarian”.

BC Communist Party Platform:

Kimball Cariou is the representative of the BC Communist Party for the riding of Vancouver-Hastings. He is a supporter of Indigenous Rights and strongly against racism. However, he has stated that “We have to get rid of this private profit system and build a socialist future. Voting Communist is one important step in a wider, long-range struggle to end exploitation, oppression and war, and to create a sustainable and just society.” His beliefs, and those of his party, are strongly anti-capitalist. 

person dropping paper on box
Photo by Element5 Digital on Pexels.com

When voting, people should ask themselves: “If I vote for ‘X’ then ‘Y’ could happen to my community”. Although it may be taunting or humourous to vote for extremist political parties, it could potentially have grave consequences on your riding, province or nation. Until we have lived it, we cannot understand the severity of an anarchist government, for example, so it is best we avoid it by voting wisely – research and know your candidate and the party they represent, and then, vote!

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