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NOW Atlantic: Smart thinking for a changing world
Support for proportional representation (MMP) by Islanders is now equal to sticking with the status quo of FPTP (first-past-the-post) in how we mark our ballots. In fact, Islanders made a significant step towards electing those other than the usual “same old, same old” to the legislature. Perhaps Islanders are open to other electoral changes. I have some ideas the current legislature could make happen in the interests of fairness. Ban election signs, or at the very least, put a cap on how many, what size and where to place them. Set an overall limit on costs that would meet the affordability needs of all people interested in running for office. Ban all polling publications within a period of four months leading up to an expected election call and certainly not during an election. Polling publications are a serious infringement on democracy. It is as negatively influential as third-party advertising which has been banned for a long time. Have all campaign report audits done by Elections P.E.I. through a third party. This is another way to allow for affordability fairness. Develop a mechanism whereby candidates with mobility challenges will have equal opportunity in reaching the electorate. Traditional door knocking is a serious barrier for people with mobility challenges. (Phoning is now very limited in reaching actual people.) Door knocking is even unsafe. We are closing out potentially good elected officials because they cannot do door knocking simply because they use wheel chairs, canes, walkers or have chronic pain that lessens the ability to carry out the traditional way we campaign. Most homes and walkways are not accessible. It should not be a case that mobility defines how capable people are of being effective legislative members.