Updated: Aug 12, 2022
August 12 update now at https://www.engagebarrie.org/post/if-you-don-t-run-who-wins-aug-12-update
As of 2pm this afternoon, there are only two weeks left until nominations close for the 2022 Municipal Elections. If you're sitting on the fence, now is the time to act!
With only two weeks to go before nominations close, the field of candidates is still looking a little bare! There are currently two Wards (5 & 7) in which only the incumbents have registered, and are set to be acclaimed. There are four Wards where the race is only between two candidates. Four of the six School Boards have only one candidate, and the others only have two each. Only one-quarter of registered candidates are women.
In order to achieve a healthy democracy, the people of Barrie need to have more candidates to choose from, and a more diverse slate of candidates bringing their ideas to the table.
This is why we've launched our "If you don't run, who wins?" campaign – to help break through some of the myths that keep people from running for office, and give a little more encouragement to those who are interested but wary. Take a look at our webpage, and keep an eye out for some mythbusting graphics coming to our social media channels over the next few days.
You can't win a race if you don't enter it. But even more importantly, even if you don't win the race, our community wins by having your perspective and ideas and passions brought to the table.
So what's the problem if representatives are acclaimed?
With no challengers, those set to be acclaimed don't have to defend their positions – or even state their positions – or try hard at all to show us they'd be good at the job.
If only one candidate runs they have a 100% chance of winning.
But the public has a 0% chance of having their voices heard as part of the election process!
If you've been unhappy or frustrated with the choices our current and previous Councils have been making, it's even more important to encourage more people – and more diverse people – to run for Council, so that all residents' voices can be properly represented.
While there are certainly valid barriers to some individuals tossing their hat in the ring this time out, many of the reasons we've heard people give for not running are not the giant obstacles you may think they are. We've put together a few of the most common ones we hear at https://www.engagebarrie.org/run-for-council – check them out, and if you can think of any more, please contact us, and our Elections Committee will get to work on finding the answers for you.
Can't run this time, but still want to get involved?
Encourage and support someone who you think would be a great candidate
Take a look at the registered candidates, and offer your assistance to one whose platform most speaks to you – whether it's handing out flyers, keeping them organized, or just bringing them a meal on a busy day, they'd all appreciate whatever you have to contribute
Contact the candidates in your area about the issues most important to you
Attend or volunteer at all-candidates meetings (we'll be needing some volunteers in the fall, hint, hint...)
Did we convince you to run?
Nomination forms are available 24/7 at https://www.barrie.ca/City%20Hall/election/Pages/Information-for-Candidates.aspx – don't leave it to the last minute to collect your 25+ nomination signatures!
We've got lots of information and resources for candidates and their supporters at https://www.engagebarrie.org/candidate-info – with more added weekly.