Join Ottawa123 for Ballots and Beers

Ottawa 123 is looking for volunteers to help build our campaign and reach out to diverse areas of the city. We need to start looking ahead to the 2018 municipal election and make voting reform a ballot box issue. We need fresh new voices at the table to help the mayor and city councillors realize the importance of a fair voting system. They need to know that citizens like you care about voting reform at the municipal level. So what can you do? Join us for our Beer and Ballots night!   Help us grow the momentum and join Ottawa123! We need volunteers from across the city to help grow the campaign, spread the word, and come up with creative ways to engage the city on voting reform. Join us for Beer and Ballots night to find out more about Ottawa123!  Even if you can’t volunteer, we’d love to hang out and chat. When: Tuesday May 23, 2017 @ 7pm-9pm Where: Fox & Feather Pub and Grill – 283 Elgin St,...
Rocking the (Ranked) Vote

Rocking the (Ranked) Vote

Colum Grove-White, writes for Samara’s Blog As voting reform activists, the biggest problem we face is getting our message out in a celebrity-and-disaster-driven news cycle.  Electoral reform is one of the most critical imperatives confronting us, but if you’re already reading this, chances are I’m preaching to the choir. Like climate change, aging populations, and global governance–all pivotal issues–the case for voting reform doesn’t translate to an obvious, compelling storyline.  We won’t die of first-past-the-post elections.  We won’t discover the cure for ebola through proportional representation. We won’t stop ISIS with ranked ballots. While most Canadians understand the mechanics of how we vote, the impact of the first-past-the-post system on our democratic fabric seems abstract and irrelevant.  Expecting Canadians to wake up tomorrow preoccupied with electoral reform is about as likely as hearing Putin has won a Nobel Peace Prize; as democratic activists we know we’ve got to think outside the box for more effective ways to get people interested. At Ottawa123, we’re trying to find better ways of getting people excited about municipal voting reform.  Ottawa123 is the Ranked Choice Voting Initiative of the City of Ottawa, just one of the various, non-partisan 1-2-3 movements springing up across Ontario, calling for cities to ditch our first-past-the-post system in favour of ranked ballots to make our elections more fair and friendly.  And while there are no buckets of ice on our Ottawa123 agenda, we’re aiming to making voting reform as easy as 1-2-3. Critics of voting reform argue it’s just too complicated for the average voter–one of the many factors that torpedoed voting reform referenda in Ontario and British...