Patrick Vance has entered the race for Vernon city council, and he’s running on a wish to see more people engage with politics at the local level.
The local resident and father of two does not consider himself to be campaigning for the position. Rather, he is simply giving voters the option to elect him while using the platform to engage with and educate the public about the value of meaningful connection in the city and its government.
Vance hopes to see a bigger voter turnout in the upcoming Oct. 15 election.
“When only 30 per cent of people make it to the polls, that tells me that only 30 per cent of our population believe they are a part of something bigger than themselves,” Vance said.
“We often point to voter apathy as the behaviour where people do not vote, but that language is imprecise. The real voter apathy is by voters who see no hope in engaging their friends, neighbours, and fellow citizens in the democratic process,” Vance added. “I want us to go from 30 per cent to 60 per cent or even 90 per cent participation, whatever it takes.”
Vance says if that happens, it will act as a draw for more great people who value community, and “perform CPR on our collective community spirit.”
Vance aspires to something different from typical politicians. He says politicians display polished personas that most people find alienating.
“Look at their campaign photos and professional signs,” he says derisively, adding he refuses to “waste money” on campaign expenses.
He anticipates that people will be surprised by his campaign strategy, but says the people need someone “real, authentic, and maybe a little bit dirty like all of us are when the cameras are off.”
“The most important thing is that I know how to wear many different hats, and I fully apprehend the responsibility of representing interests beyond my own in my role as a city councillor,” he said.
Vance invites people to email him at email@example.com or follow his Facebook page, @Vance22, or his Twitter at @Vanceconnect, where he will be posting videos and schedules for upcoming meet-and-greets once the campaign period begins.