Canada election: Some disruptions reported at polls as deadline to vote looms

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Elections Canada is reporting a handful of disruptions at polling stations across the country, with an Indigenous-led protest and voting workers not showing up, as millions of Canadians cast their ballots in the country’s first pandemic election.

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While most polling stations open on time and without incident, Elections Canada spokeswoman Diane Benson says issues have been reported with several sites in Ontario and Western Canada, resulting in some stations opening late or relocating. Does matter.

These include a polling station in the riding of Brentford-Brant, southwest of Toronto, which had to be relocated following a protest organized by the Haudenosaunee Confederacy Chiefs Council.

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The council last week spoke out against placing a polling station in its traditional territory, calling it a violation of the treaty and encouraging members not to vote.

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Local newspaper Turtle Island News reports that protesters blocked all three entrances to the polling station before a standoff with Six Nation Police began.

The paper said the polling station was removed from the reserve after talks between the two sides.

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“We know that protests from the Haudenosaunee Confederacy Chiefs Council disrupted the vote at a polling place in Brantford-Brant before the polling place was moved,” Benson said in an email.

Benson also reported that polling workers did not turn up for two elections in Ontario, riding in Kenora, near the border with Manitoba. Standby workers from other parts of the area were on their way, he said, adding that polling is expected to begin by mid-afternoon.

Two polling places in the First Nations in the Grand Prairie-Mackenzie ride in Alberta were also late-openers, as workers could not go into closed buildings. Since then the voting has started.

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Elections Canada was also aware that a polling place in the BC community of Yakuchee in the riding of the Skina-Bulkley Valley was not open.

Benson also pointed out that with the approval of local campaigns, special arrangements were made for several polling places in the Toronto Riding of Eglinton-Lawrence and University-Rosedale, to manage the flow of voters while respecting safety measures .

“We are aware of disruption to polling services at several polling stations in Davenport,” he said. “Voting has resumed.”

Voters went to the polls as soon as the epidemic campaign ended

Isolated disruption came as Canada’s leading party leaders joined millions of residents who have cast their ballots in the country’s first pandemic election, which culminates in Canada’s coast-to-coast elections today.

Elections Canada says about 6.8 million people voted early, most of them in advance elections a week earlier, and the rest voted via mail or special ballots at Election Canada offices.

Conservative leader Erin O’Toole and his wife Rebecca arrive at a polling station in Bowmanville, Ont., on Monday morning to cast their vote in the riding of Durham.

Rebecca O’Toole told a poll worker that the couple wore the same blue dress they wore at the campaign launch.

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“I wonder what he’s voting for,” she joked as her husband marked his ballot before casting his ballot.

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Liberal leader Justin Trudeau casts his vote with his three children at the ride in Papineau, Ky. His wife Sophie Gregoire Trudeau, who had already voted, waited at the entrance of the polling station.

Trudeau’s youngest son, 7-year-old Hadrian, grabbed his father’s hand and accompanied him to the voting booth, before the two pushed the ballot box together.

Other leaders voted ahead of election day, including NDP leader Jagmeet Singh, who voted in an advance vote earlier this month in his ride in Burnaby, BC.

Singh stopped there on Monday near the party’s campaign office, which was decorated with orange signs, pictures of their leader and yellow sunflowers, along with his pregnant wife Gurkiran Kaur Sidhu to thank the volunteers who have been prominent throughout his campaign. Huh.

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When asked how they stayed, the couple told the volunteers that they were optimistic and full of energy.

Bloc Québécois leader Yves-François Blanchett also voted in advance, but spoke Monday morning in Drummondville, Ky., to encourage his supporters to go to their polling stations.

“This is democracy. People send to parliament the people they believe will best represent them,” Blanchett said on Monday. “Whatever Canada wants in the form of ballot questions, it’s their business. But I believe Quebec has a right to be different.”

Green Party leader Annie Paul voted by mail.

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Most of Canada’s more than 30 million eligible voters will mark their ballots today.

Elections Canada told The Canadian Press that it had intermittent problems with a search tool on its website that tells voters which polling station to go to based on their postal code. The agency urged voters to check their voting cards or call Elections Canada directly if they are not sure where to go.

Benson said Elections Canada was also investigating high call volumes in some electoral districts, although it did not specify which rides were affected.

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Elections Canada previously warned that the pandemic could lead to a longer wait for voters than in previous elections.

Public health protocols include keeping people at a distance and collecting additional information for contact tracing purposes, which can take additional time.

The polling station itself is also likely to be remote, as many schools and landlords opted to host crowds of voters during the polling…

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