On Sept. 13, the fourth day of advance voting for the Sept. 20 federal election, the lineup in the morning stretched around two sides of the 5th Avenue Seniors Centre in Salmon Arm. (Martha Wickett - Salmon Arm Observer)

On Sept. 13, the fourth day of advance voting for the Sept. 20 federal election, the lineup in the morning stretched around two sides of the 5th Avenue Seniors Centre in Salmon Arm. (Martha Wickett - Salmon Arm Observer)

Advance poll popular way to vote in Salmon Arm in 2021

Lineups common as pandemic slows voting experience

Advance voting appears to be a particularly popular way to cast a ballot in Salmon Arm in the 2021 federal election.

The lineups wound around two sides of the 5th Avenue Seniors Centre on Monday morning, Sept. 13, the last of four advance polling dates.

A short survey of people waiting to vote showed that most usually go to the advance poll, but this year it’s slower because of pandemic protocols, plus more people seem to be wanting to get it done early.

“We like to get it over with,” said one person, their companion adding that next year they’ll be doing it via mail to avoid the lineups.

The ‘getting it over with’ viewpoint was shared by a few people.

“Just to get it done. I don’t think my mind’s going to change,” smiled one person.

Another voter said they tend to do things at the last minute, but this year they just happened to have the time to vote early.

Several people said the line-ups have been long for more than one of the advance voting days.

“I came last night and there was a long line so I came back this morning and it was twice as bad. It’s very, very unusual,” said one person.

Another had a similar experience.

“It’s been like this every day. We came three times yesterday and the lineups were long so we thought we’d bite the bullet.”

One person will be working on Sept. 20, election day, so was choosing to use the advance poll.

If you have questions about the 2021 election and prefer the in-person method, Salmon Arm has an Elections Canada office at 171 Shuswap St. North, Suite Unit J, just across the street from Salmon Arm Economic Development, the multi-coloured building. (The elections office is in the same building as the former home of the Salmon Arm Observer, now across from Blackburn Park at the corner of Fifth Avenue SW and Seventh Street SW.)

If you don’t have an election card but want to know where to vote, you can find your voting place by going to the Elections Canada website, Voter Information Service, and you can search by postal code.

Read more: New campaign looks to encourage voting among the under-35 crowd in Western Canada

Read more: Election 2021: Voting rights did not always extend to all Canadians


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