Doing the Voting Clerk Gig for Elections BC

I just had my class this morning in Aldergrove, British Columbia, only a short drive from my home, where I learned my roll in the up coming provincial election this May. It was a little bit overwhelming at first, but once I had a chance to read the course handouts and following the instructor’s lecture during each module, I started to get basic procedures down to memorization really quickly. The process seems very straightforward, but we spent most of our time on the “what ifs” scenarios that could happen when voters come to cast their ballots.

Training Session for Elections BC - April 20 2013 small image

The question that I had was already answered right at the very beginning of the lecture. Do I get to vote during the voting day? The answer is no becuase we will be too busy to cast our ballots on that day, so we will have to do advanced voting in order to vote. Cool, at least I will have my opportunity. I already have my candidate chosen, so advanced voting is not a problem for me.

Like I said, I will be a clerk. I will be the person who records the voter’s address and other bits of information during the voting process, and will do the initial counting at the end of the day.  I will be sitting beside a Voting Officer, (just the two of us at each station) who will oversee the ballot and will make sure that everything goes smoothly.

I have three weeks to memorizes these procedures and make sure I have all the working knowledge of each form, and letter that needs to be dealt with for that day.

Also, our day will be fourteen hours long. From 8:00am until 8:00pm, we have to be at our stations as the voters show up to vote.  We cannot under any circumstances abandon our post. Bathroom breaks are going to tricky if we get heavy voter turnout. Even though my position will be at the School in Fort Langley, I have moved further away from town, so I have to bring lunch. I will miss that days when I was just down the road from the voting stations.

I am super happy about this.

7 Thoughts on “Doing the Voting Clerk Gig for Elections BC

  1. So you’ve gone through the training… here’s a question:

    If I feel no candidate represents me in my riding… what are my options?

    What if I don’t want to vote for anyone and wish my “no vote” to count for something or be annotated somewhere… did they train you for that kind of a situation?

    I’m genuinely curious.

  2. Hey RadMan,

    Elections BC is a nonpartisan organization.

    OK, I really encourage you to vote, or at lease for someone.

    There are circumstances where people vote, and they spoil their ballots. Spoiled ballots are recorded, but no one will get your vote. You could look at a spoiled ballots as 1) people who could not figure out the instructions, and their ballots were unable to placed towards a candidate, or 2) the voter made the effort to go out and vote, and deliberately spoiled their ballot. Because no name is associated with a ballot, their is now way of telling.

  3. So I guess the answer is that there is no official way of registering a “I’m not voting not because I don’t care, but because I don’t care for my available choices.”

    But let me ask you this question… why do you encourage me to vote?

    From my perspective politics is corrupt… with our choice of candidates only being akin to choosing which side of the same coin. I can’t help but feel that by voting I am giving my tacit approval of a political and economic system that I feel is destroying our humanity and killing our civilization.

    So seriously, why should I vote?

  4. By the way,

    At least on my browser the lines of the comments are being truncated at the end, making it hard to read what people have been putting up. FYI

  5. RadMan,

    A long time ago, British Columbia (and throughout Canada) used to have what was known as the Rhino Party, with the sole purpose of having a party to cast your vote to, where that party would say, “a promise to keep none of our promises,” for the disillusioned voter to cast their ballot. In 1993 they were no longer allowed to run in Canada. Please, Google it, very funny, and part of our past in Canada.

    Short answer, no, there is no place to cast your vote to show your feelings in the political sphere.

    I encourage everyone to vote. Even if the closest party to your ideology does not get voted in, your vote will at least give that party some support, both financially, and morally. And, we do live in a free society, so you have every right not to vote.

  6. RadMan, About my theme. I’m using this theme temporarily becuase of the text spacing issue you bought up. I seem to have a WordPress issue, not related to any of my themes that I use. I may have to loose the Gravatar. 🙁

  7. Doug the trainer for Vancouver West End, VNW, may know the course material but lacks the training skills to teach the course. The worst instructor I have ever had. He spends valuable time telling jokes and then apologizes for not having completed course material. He encourages the class to ask questions and then blames us for asking too many questions and not being able to finish the course material. At the end of the session an exam is handed out. He apologizes for questions on the exam that have not been covered in the session. A few minutes later he tells us that too many wrong answers is an indication that we are not absorbing the material and could disqualify us from our intended jobs. Five questions on the exam had not been covered in the course material. I am so fed up with his insulting jokes and inadequate teaching skills that I am seriously considering quitting. I have been through two horrible training sessions and will try one more before quitting. I shudder to think what election day will be like in Vancouver West End with so many new voting officers, clerks, supervisors, etc not receiving the proper training. He says the reason we are not allowed to take our material for voting day home the night before election day is because in the last election he placed all the materials outside his apartment in the hallway, closed the door and could not get back in to retrieve his car keys. He then had to go to a neighbours apartment at six in the morning to ask for spare keys to his apartment. He did not think the neighbour would here him knocking on the door so first went to lobby to buzz intercom. Doug then remembers, hey, I do not have any keys, how am I going to get back in the building. He then went to neighbours apt. for spare keys. Staff were waiting at the polling station one half hour in the pouring rain.
    He then says, now you can see why we do not give out course material the night before. Unbelievable, What a nightmare.

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