Perhaps you have been, like me, at some point disappointed by a government’s actions (like supporting the Site C dam), or inaction (like not implementing UNDRIP). So it would be understandable if your election-time mojo were to wane. But…
I’m here to invite you to take heart and take heed, set aside those thoughts, and dare to have hope in our system of democracy… Hope that it can improve, hope that it can serve people better in the days to come, and hope that we can use it as one of our most important tools in tackling the climate emergency.
These ideas helped me get my election groove back, and I hope it helps you get in the spirit of the season.
- I’ve been inspired by the energy of our team of incredible volunteers who are getting out the vote. Our younger volunteers are leading the charge, and they’re rocking it! Join them, and support them! Email our coordinator Rhia at email@example.com to get set up making phone calls to remind people to vote, from our office or from your own home. All you need is a computer with speakers, microphone and internet. You can do it in your pajamas!
- For the first time in a federal election, millennials are the biggest voting bloc and climate action is a top priority for voters. Young people have the most to gain if we can secure strong climate action policies – and the most to lose if people who care about climate stay home this election. We know younger people are underrepresented at the polling station, but if we can’t get pumped about voting, why should young people? Let’s show young people we care, and that this election really matters.
- After the election, I’ll see you on the streets. For many people, the single act of voting is a gateway to much bigger engagement in our democracy. That should be encouraged, and I’m heartened knowing that voting is an important way to build on and support all the critical work happening on the ground in those four years in between elections. No matter how this election goes, the next 11 years is going to be pivotal for our climate. We need all hands on deck, everywhere, using all the tools we have, to tackle the climate emergency and find creative solutions together.
- Our democracy needs improvement (proportional representation, for one!), and staying out of politics does nothing to help us get there. In fact, oil lobbyists would be thrilled if you stayed home! Let’s show them we’re a strong, engaged populace to be reckoned with. If political party organizing isn’t your style but you want to participate, why not join the ‘non-partisan party’ at our office with volunteers getting out the vote? As a charity, we don’t endorse candidates or parties; instead we focus on mobilizing together on the issues we care about. If you want to do something about climate, why not encourage others who care about climate to act too?
- It’s important to vote, because not everyone living in Canada can. Voting needs to be more inclusive of the people living in this country, and I have that in mind as I remind our supporters to vote. The kids and teenagers who are striking for climate are begging us adults to do whatever we can. Migrants and refugees are some of the most affected by Canada’s politics and policies, and by worsening climate impacts—and most don’t get a chance to vote. Together, the rest of us need to counter the rise of racist and anti-immigrant sentiment in this country by speaking out in our communities and using our vote to support decent work, universal services, permanent status and full rights for all people—and a world free of discrimination and displacement.
In challenging times, what gets your mojo working? I’d love to hear from you.