I moved into the East Exchange District in May 2014. The building I live in was once a warehouse and now has been converted into condominium units. When I moved in, there were 4 units occupied and today (September 2014) there are over twenty units occupied.
The reason this is important is that the neighbourhood is becoming just that, a neighbourhood. Politicians have, so far, ignored a potential political force.
I contacted the City Clerk’s office asking what ward I am in and where my voting place is located. The response was immediate and I now know I am in the Point Douglas Ward and I know where I can go to vote. I will probably vote in the advance poll because City Hall is closer than the Neeginan Centre.
I did some research on who the candidates are. The sitting counsellor is Mike Pagtakhan. The other candidates are Dale White, Anthony Ramos, Rebecca Chartrand, and Anne Thompson.
I contacted each of these candidates and asked for information, and I indicated that the people in the area are very likely to be active voters. I got responses from two candidates – Mike Pagtakhan and Anne Thompson.
On September 22, I attended an all candidates forum at the RBC Convention Centre. This was a free event presented by The Metro.
The candidates did not make speeches but were available to anyone who wanted to talk to them. I was there from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m., and I estimated there were 200 people along with the candidates in the room. This, on the first time Jets fans could watch their team at the MTS Centre, and on one of the nicest evenings weather-wise in a month.
Now, I have a bit more information on my candidates, I know what my constituency is, and where I know where to vote.
The biggest change I have noticed is that the candidates do not give out literature anymore, but instead direct you to their websites. They have a button or a card with their name and website, but no pamphlets detailing their platforms.
I am an experienced voter, have worked for candidates at all levels of government, and take the act of voting very seriously. This is the first time I have had to work this hard at finding a politician and details about their policy platforms. My quest for more information continues – welcome to Winnipeg’s Civic Campaign 2014.