advance polling stations toronto

Advance polling stations open in Toronto and people are complaining of long lines

Advance polling stations opened in Toronto today but those hoping to get the jump on the long voter lines predicted for the Sept. 20 federal election were in for a rude awakening as many had to wait excruciatingly long to cast their early ballot.

Advance voting for the 44th general election runs from today through Monday, and reports of painful wait times have already been coming in on day one. The worst reports are coming out of the Toronto-Centre riding, foreshadowing trouble this coming election day.

Toronto Centre's election day polling stations have been slashed from 91 in the 2019 election down to a paltry 15 stations, part of a broader decrease in the number of in-person polling stations due to the pandemic.

This is a staggering 84 per cent drop in the number of stations, and the single-largest polling station decline of any GTA riding according to a report from CBC News.

Nine different ridings in the regions have witnessed a 50 per cent or greater drop in the number of polling stations compared to the last federal election.

While encouraging alternative voting methods, this cutdown in stations will have in-person voters traveling further and waiting longer, all while having to stay conscious of social distancing and mask regulations. And it seems problems are brewing even before the main event takes place.

Other areas of the city are less of a problem, with wait times as low as 10 to 20 minutes being reported.

Things may only get worse come election day when voters turn out in much greater numbers.

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