Barrie voters span the political spectrum, some frustration in polls (4 photos)


“My grandparents came from a country where voting was not so easy, so I never take it for granted and neither does my daughter,” voter says

Mark Gabriel was very proud to have voted in Barrie on Monday.

Originally from the Philippines, Gabriel immigrated to Canada with his wife after spending 10 years in Singapore. Initially, they lived in Scarborough, then set their sights on Barrie.

“We saw the potential in Barrie so we picked here,” said three-year-old Franco’s father. Barrie today. “We were able to get a townhouse and the price was very good then.

The Gabriel family became Canadian citizens in February 2020 and Monday was their first opportunity to vote in their new homeland.

After following the issues and the political scene, Gabriel said he wanted to support the Conservative Party because he believes the party is closer to his Catholic beliefs. While the Gabriels like the current immigration policy, they disagree with the legalization of cannabis, which was an initiative of the Liberal government.

The Barrie-Springwater-Oro-Medonte constituency polling station at Paul Sadlon Motors on Bayfield Street North attracted a wide range of voters with diverse interests and opinions.

Trinh King is a longtime NDP supporter who has said she wants a government to focus more on protecting the environment, building community and spreading wealth.

“What the NDP represents, overall, is the best choice for a caring community,” she said.

Anne Marie Munro found the Conservatives’ message during the campaign unclear. She said everything seemed to be focused on the attack on Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau.

“I voted for the Liberals,” Munro said. “The Conservative Party has never spoken of its platform.”

Emily Ruffolo said voting is an important part of the democratic process.

“I am here to do my duty as a citizen because every vote counts,” said the teacher.

Ruffolo said she was concerned about access to housing and feared a Conservative government would push back the retirement age from 65 to 67. She supported the Liberals.

Her husband, Frank, said he followed the issues, the news and the leaders’ debate before making up his mind. He, too, is worried about affordable housing, aid related to the pandemic and how the country should move forward, but has not said how he voted.

For some, exercising their right to vote was not that simple.

Ron Kyle is clear he does not want another Liberal government and never wanted one.

“We have to change what’s going on,” the retired firefighter said, adding he was concerned about the economy and the future. “The government has been a joke, no accountability. (Justin Trudeau) does whatever he wants.

Kyle found out that he had gone to the wrong polling station and was heading to the right one.

Another couple left the polling station saying “we don’t vote”.

“We stood in line for 20 minutes and were told we were in the wrong place,” said one woman, who added she was out of time and voting should be allowed anywhere. what polling place.

Benjamin McCluskey is now of voting age and keen to witness the entire process.

“This is the first time that I am voting,” he said. “I just want to see how it all works.”

But McCluskey said he was told he didn’t bring the correct information and patiently went home to get what he needed.

At the Holly Community Center polling station in the south of the city, voters cast their ballots in the constituency of Barrie-Innisfil.

A man named Sonny said he was more focused on the individual candidate than the party.

“When I vote, I rarely consider the federal aspect. I vote for who I think will best represent my constituency, ”he said. “I want the right representation for me and my ruling family at a more local level because that’s who I’m going to have to deal with as the government is not doing what I love.

A woman named Monika has identified climate change as an issue she considers very important. She said she voted for the party she said “had the best and most credible climate change plan in the group.”

She also considers the ability to vote to be important.

“I’m 35 now and have voted in every election, at every level I’ve been able to since I was 22,” Monika said. “It’s so important. My grandparents came from a country where voting was not so easy, so I never take it for granted and neither does my daughter.

– With files from Shawn Gibson

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