Voting in an election is the act of selecting a political candidate to represent you in government. This choice is made by marking a ballot and placing it in a ballot box at a designated voting location. Voting transforms the concept of democracy into reality.
For this reason, we believe it is never too soon to learn about government processes. When the time comes, it is our hope that you will be eager to participate.
Reference: Ontario Elections - Youth
Reference: Association of Municipalities Ontario
Click on the following links for more information on elections in your area:
Elections for municipal government are held at least every four years on the second Monday in November. Prior to the vote in 2006, the period between elections had been 3 years. For example, 2000, 2003 and 2006 were municipal election years.
The Legislative Assembly of Ontario legislation (Bill 81, Schedule H), passed in 2006, set the maximum length of time for terms in office for all municipal elected officials at four years.
In the event that the polling day falls on a holiday, polling day shall be rescheduled for the next succeeding day that is not a holiday.
Think about all the services your municipal government is responsible for providing.
Roads. Public transit. Child Care. Local policing. Water and sewers. Ambulances. Parks. Recreation.
Learn who in your community best represents your position on the issues that mean the most to you and your family.
Click here to a see list of the surrounding municipalities.
Who can vote in the elections?
Anyone can vote in a municipal election who, on the day of the election, is:
- 18 years of age or older
- a Canadian citizen; and
- either a resident of the municipality or a property owner or tenant or the spouse or same sex partner of an owner or tenant in the municipality during a specified time just before the election.
To be able to vote, your name must be on the list of eligible voters.
If you are on the voters list, you should receive a card in late October telling you that you are eligible to vote. If you think you are eligible to vote, but have not received your card by the end of October in an election year, call your municipality to find out what to do in order to vote. Often, municipalities will publish this kind of information in the local newspaper.
Who can be a candidate?
Generally, anyone who is eligible to vote may be a candidate for a position on a municipal council.
When you think about candidates for federal or provincial elections, you usually think about the political party that each candidate represents. In municipal elections in Ontario, candidates are not elected to represent a political party.
For more information on municipal elections in Ontario, visit the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing site on Municipal Elections.
If, on election day, you are:
- 18 years of age or older,
- a Canadian citizen, and
- a resident of the electoral district in Ontario
- then you can vote!
Some voters are in what we call "special circumstances". In particular, these people fall into one of three groups:
- Ontario residents outside the province
- Inmates in penal or correctional institutions
- Non-traditional residences
Read more in-depth information on Provincial Elections by clicking on this PDF Election Manual.
Can I vote in this general election?
You are eligible to vote if you:
- are a Canadian citizen
- are at least 18 years old on election day,
- When you vote, you must provide satisfactory proof of identity and address.
Your place of ordinary residence may be the place where you are living while you are attending school.
If you decide that your place of ordinary residence is your address while not attending school (such as your family's address), you may vote at the advance or ordinary polls in that electoral district or register and vote by special ballot.
In order to vote in your electoral district at an advance or ordinary poll, you must be registered on the voters list for the polling division in which you ordinarily reside. If you are not registered, you may register on an advance polling day or on election day.