CBC Windsor asked: How long will you wait to vote? Here's what people said

·3 min read
Emmanuel Gasore (left), Kaci Harynewich (centre), Darlene Donley (right) are all headed to the polls Monday. (Jennifer La Grassa/CBC - image credit)
Emmanuel Gasore (left), Kaci Harynewich (centre), Darlene Donley (right) are all headed to the polls Monday. (Jennifer La Grassa/CBC - image credit)

For Windsorites who have waited until election day to vote, many who spoke with CBC News said they are prepared to wait in line — for as long as it takes to cast their ballot.

But, one man said he's not planning to spend longer than 10 to 20 minutes at the polls.

"The reason I say 10 minutes is because this is not the best election for me," said Emmanuel Gasore, of Windsor. "This year's debate wasn't as informative as it normally should be and so, it kind of has reduced my energy and dedication to the election itself."

Gasore said from a voter standpoint, those who have enough information and are decided on a party that aligns with what they feel passionately about, are likely going to "sacrifice" more time to ensure their vote gets in.

"But the fact that I'm just voting to get someone into power ... it's different for me," he said.

Many others said they're willing to wait as long as it takes.

Kaci Harynewich, also of Windsor, says even though she'll have to step away from work to vote, she's won't leave until her ballot gets submitted.

"It's probably going to be crazy, to all my coworkers I said bring a lot of patience because it's probably going to be long lineups and don't leave until you vote. You can't do anything about change without voting," she said.

In Canada, eligible voters are to be given a three-hour window to cast their vote, without loss of pay. Employers are expected to accommodate that democratic right.

Darlene Donley, of Belle River, says she plans to go first thing in the morning and while she hopes it doesn't take longer than a 30 minutes, she will stick it out no matter what.

Jennifer La Grassa/CBC
Jennifer La Grassa/CBC

"I think my vote's important, I'll wait longer if I have to because if I don't agree with who gets elected it'll be my own fault," she said.

"I've seen a lot of people pre-voting so I'm sure that you won't have to wait too long."

More advanced voters in 2021 vs. 2019

Many Windsorites who spoke with CBC News said they voted in advance to avoid the long lines.

According to preliminary results from Elections Canada, thousands more people voted ahead of election day in Windsor-Essex in 2021, compared to the 2019 election. Here's the estimated number of advanced voters:

  • Windsor-Tecumseh: 19,795 voters for 2021; 8,040 more than in 2019.

  • Windsor West: 12,588 for 2021; 3,592 more than in 2019.

  • Essex: 25, 354 for 2021; 8,078 more than in 2019.

That uptick was consistent across Canada.

According to preliminary figures from Elections Canada, about 5.7 million people voted in advance polls, held on Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday of last week — an 18 per cent increase from the 4.8 million who voted in advance in the 2019 general election.

Despite this, John Beebe, director of the democratic engagement exchange in the faculty of arts at Ryerson University, told CBC Toronto people should expect longer than usual wait times.

The COVID-19 pandemic, he said, has made the voting process more complicated. Some regions might not have as many polling stations or as many workers as previous years — a fact confirmed by Elections Canada.

Polls will be open between 9:30 a.m. and 9:30 p.m. Monday.

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