As many of you know, the Federal Election is just around the corner, happening on October 21st. Throughout the past two elections, the amount of youth getting to the polls to vote has continued to rise. Students are more engaged in political spheres than ever before, and for the first time ever, millennials are the largest voting bloc in the 2019 election. Youth in this country have an opportunity to make our voices heard loud and clear by the federal government, and your student association has chosen to do something about it.
The CCSAI has partnered with a non-partisan, not-for-profit advocacy organization called the Canadian Alliance of Student Associations (CASA) that represents students from one side of the country to the other. They advocate for the accessibility and affordability of a post-secondary education that is innovative and of the highest quality for all and have a respected reputation in and around Parliament Hill. Their policies range from advocating for access to upfront needs-based grants, sexual violence prevention on post-secondary campuses, and better support for international students, just to name a few. In light of the Federal Election, CASA is focusing on one particular goal: getting students to vote.
In order to quantify student engagement during this election, CASA member schools and partners – including CCSAI- are running a voter mobilization campaign to get students to the polls. Regardless of who is in power on October 22nd, CCSAI wants to be able to show the government that our students deserve a seat at the table by highlighting just how engaged our students are in this election. In order to demonstrate how much Centennial students care, we are collecting pledges to vote, and it is SO EASY to pledge!
All you need to do is visit getoutthevote.ca
It takes less than a minute, but the impact that your pledge to vote has on our ability to advocate for students to the federal government is immensely valuable. For our International students who unfortunately cannot vote in the election, encourage your friends to take the pledge! Talk with your friends about the issues that matter to you, and ask that your Canadian classmates help build the voices of students up to the federal government.
Not only is it important that every eligible student who can vote does, but it is also important that the choice you are making is informed by reputable sources. CASA’s Get Out The Vote website has information directly from Elections Canada on what ID you need to bring, where to find your polling location, and how to vote for your home riding. Take time to visit the official websites of each political party and candidate in your area so you are aware of the issues they care about. It does not matter who you vote for, but it matters that you exercise your democratic right and Get Out The Vote!
I encourage each student who is able to vote in the election to pledge to vote now. We have the power to make an impact, so let’s join over 400,000 students from across the country in participating in this campaign by pledging to vote together!
President of the Centennial College Student Association Inc.