The low voter participation rate by young people in Canada should have us all worried about the future of our democracy.
In 2011, only one in three first-time voters went to the polls. Elections Canada responded by initiating Democracy Week, a civic education project to engage Canadian youth.
Recently, a Democracy Week event was put on by the Vernon Students’ Association at Okanagan College.
The association deserves a great big thank, you for its efforts. And kudos as well to all of the representatives from the four federal political parties in North Okanagan Shuswap for taking the time to attend and co-operate in this non-partisan event.
But there is a sad note: we may have seen the last Democracy Week in Canada. The Harper government’s Fair Elections Act passed this spring (with much opposition) will prevent Elections Canada from sponsoring events like Democracy Week to encourage people to get out and vote in the future.
Canadians deserve better.