August Newsletter

Anyone who said that Toronto politics was dull may have to reconsider that position. Unexpectedly, we now find ourselves two months away from an election in which the very number of councillors that will be elected is the subject of a court case pitting the City of Toronto and the Province of Ontario against each other.

Whatever the result of this case and however many councillors Toronto ends up electing on 22 October, these events only underline the critical importance of improving our democracy by switching to ranked ballots. Indeed, if city council is shrunk to 25 seats as seems likely, this increased concentration of power will only make improving the method by which our representatives are elected even more important.

RaBIT is working hard to make sure that this message is front and centre in this election. Check out the updates below to see how you can contribute to moving Toronto closer to using ranked ballots.

RaBIT’s Candidate Pledge campaign is now live

RaBIT’s main focus during this election is on building a coalition of candidates who support switching to ranked ballots. Our primary strategy for doing this is our Candidate Pledge campaign which involves inviting candidates to take the following pledge:

“As a candidate in the 2018 Toronto election, I pledge that, if elected, I will support, advance, and vote in favour of those actions required for ranked ballots to be used in the 2022 Toronto elections.”

Candidates who take the pledge have their support highlighted on a special Election 2018 section of our website which we’ve built so that voters can find out where candidates stand on adopting ranked ballots. Please take a look and see which candidates for mayor have taken the pledge. (Unfortunately, because of recent events, we haven't been able to put together the ward specific webpages for the city council races yet. But we will publish these as soon as possible.) We are also promoting candidates’ support for ranked ballots through our social media (Twitter and Facebook), so please help us to spread the word about these supportive candidates by sharing with your networks.

While we’re still in the process of contacting candidates, we are pleased to report that 41 candidates have already taken the pledge, with more signing up almost every day. If you have a candidate you support, or just want to know where all the candidates in your ward stand, encourage them to get in touch with at info@rabit.ca and we’ll provide them with the information they’ll need to take the pledge.

Upcoming RaBIT Events

In addition to the Candidate Pledge campaign, RaBIT is also stepping up our work in a few other areas during the election and there are lots of ways that you can get involved. One great way to do so is to turn up at one of the following 3 events:

  • RaBIT is holding a pub night on 11 September in Davenport - one of the critical races in this year’s city council election. Details for this event are still being worked out but we’ll be back in touch next week with all the information you need to know. In the meantime, save the date!
  • RaBIT will be holding a Town Hall Meeting on 17 September at Metro Hall (55 John St) starting at 7pm in Room 310. At the meeting, we’ll provide a general update on RaBIT’s work, discuss Toronto’s election campaign so far and highlight opportunities for supporters to get involved with our election-focused work. More information will be provided in the coming days, so watch this space.
  • This year, we’re holding RaBIT’s annual fundraiser on 1 October. The event, which will run from 7-9pm and will take place in the CSI Regent Park Lounge (585 Dundas St E) will be dedicated to celebrating the candidates who have taken RaBIT’s Candidate Pledge. Additional details, including the evening’s fun-filled program, guest speakers, and the way to get tickets will be announced shortly.

That’s it for now. Thanks for all your support so far. Even with the recent turmoil, we believe that this election represents a very good chance to elect a council that will move forward with ranked ballots. Please help us make the final push to make it so.