To the editor:
I went to the Lions Community Centre in Westbank for advanced voting today [Oct. 9]. I waited in line for over two hours. During that time an elderly lady fainted (while waiting in line) and paramedics had to be called and a young couple with a seven-week old baby were standing in line just ahead of me. They had to vote today because he was leaving to go out of town for work that night.
I am 61 years old. I have IBS and am waiting for knee replacement surgery. Many people were complaining about the ridiculous wait time. One of the officials came out and told the people waiting outside that no one was making them wait in line. That they were free to go and come back another day. After I had been waiting for two hours another official came out and said it would probably be another two hours before it was our turn to vote and told us it was taking approximately five minutes per person to cast their vote. There were three different polling stations and the lines for stations 608 and 609 had less people in them and were moving somewhat quicker but the line (which I was in) for station 609 was barely moving. In the two-hour period I was there, we moved about 30 feet.
I planned to vote today, but I couldn’t wait any longer. I ripped up my voter registration card, threw it on the floor, and will not be voting in this election. Other people I was talking to were leaving also, and some were not planning to come back another time to vote.
The government complains about how bad the voting turnout is in Canada. Well it is no wonder. It is an archaic, time consuming process and until we catch up with technology and the younger generations can vote on their phone and the elderly do not have to stand in line for four hours, I predict that there will be less and less people voting. Is it like this all across Canada or only in B.C.?
Verlayne Disrude, West Kelowna