'Don't take it out on these signs': Election candidates face sign stealing in St. John's

·2 min read
St. John's Ward 3 candidate Jamie Korab found this collection of election signs dumped near the Team Gushue Highway this week. (Jamie Korab/Twitter - image credit)
St. John's Ward 3 candidate Jamie Korab found this collection of election signs dumped near the Team Gushue Highway this week. (Jamie Korab/Twitter - image credit)
Jamie Korab/Twitter
Jamie Korab/Twitter

Stolen campaign signs are not an uncommon occurrence for candidates running in elections, but according to St. John's Ward 3 candidate Jamie Korab, signs are disappearing this year in numbers.

Korab said he had close to 30 signs stolen from the Cowan Heights area of St. John's this week. While working to replace the stolen signs, he got an email from a resident saying a collection of signs had been dumped off the Team Gushue Highway.

"I drove up and located them, found about 20 of mine," Korab told CBC News Saturday.

With the federal election set for Sept. 20 and Newfoundland and Labrador's municipal elections following just eight days later, there are more candidates — and more signs — on the campaign trail this year.

"There was a few of multiple people running against me, a bunch of at large [candidates], and also [Seamus] O'Regan and Mr. [Raymond] Critch who are running in the federal campaign," Korab said.

He said he found between 50 and 60 signs off the highway, and spent part of Saturday working to return the signs to candidates.

"I talked to Minister O'Regan's campaign headquarters, some of his volunteers, they said it's the worst they've seen.… It's by far the worst year ever," he said.

"We're all in it together … we all want to get elected, but at the same time we're all humans. We shouldn't really tolerate things like this, and like I've said I'm sure they'd do the same for me."

Korab said damaged or stolen signs can often be deflating to a campaign since they cost both time and money. Each sign costs about $10 to make, which means the cost needed to replace them can build up quickly.

And while social media has become key in any campaign, he said signs are still a necessity to get a candidate's name out there.

"You're working so hard, you're doing your best for the residents, what you feel is the best. Not everyone's going to agree with the decisions I make, and I wouldn't expect them to," Korab said.

"You just hope that if they're frustrated with me or they're unhappy with any candidate … be upset with the policy, don't be upset the person. And don't take it out on these signs."

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