HSA members urged to vote in municipal election

On Saturday, November 19, 2011 British Columbians head to the polls to elect mayors, municipal councillors, school trustees, and regional district representatives.

These local representatives make decisions that affect our everyday lives, and play a critical role in making our neighbourhoods, towns, and regions places where we want to live.  Local politicians are also an important voice for our communities with higher levels of government, speaking up for communities on important local, provincial and federal issues. 

On average, fewer than 30 per cent of British Columbians vote in local elections. HSA urges members to help reverse this trend by learning more about the candidates in your community and exercising your vote.

As part of its involvement with the Canadian Labour Congress and local Labour Councils, HSA has mailed members a list of the municipal candidates endorsed by their local Labour Council.  We hope you will consider this information when deciding which candidates to support with your vote.  Members are also reminded that -plumping" is allowed in local elections, that is, your ballot will be valid if you choose to vote for fewer candidates than the number of positions available.

For general information on voter eligibility and other aspects of municipal elections, see the Local Government Elections section of the Ministry of Community, Sport and Cultural Development website. 
Local governments are responsible for conducting municipal and school board elections.  Check your local governments website and local community newspapers for information specific to the municipal election in your area, including voting times and locations, and how to register to vote.

Please note that unlike provincial and federal elections, workers are not entitled by law to any specific minimum number of consecutive hours to vote in municipal elections. 

Members who are eligible voters and are covered by the Community Social Services agreements for General Services or Community Living Services, are entitled to 4 consecutive clear hours in which the polls are open in which to vote (Article 20.5 in both agreements).  This means that based on your scheduled hours of work and the voting hours in your community,  your employer could allow you to arrive late, leave early or give you 4 hours off at some point during the work day to vote.

General voting day:  Saturday, November 19

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