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Shuttle mobs: UVic students' latest voting innovations

Across the nation, vote mobbers are saying, "Well, that was fun, now what?" Students at UVic and other campuses have invented an answer. The "voter social" is a pub party this weekend you can be transported to -- after you've voted at an advanced poll.

Here's the press release The Tyee received explaining the initiative.

The vote mob phenomenon that swept campuses and computers screens across the country, is now sweeping advance polling stations. This weekend students at the University of Victoria are heading to the poll en masse with a fun action called the "voter social."

The UVic Students' Society (UVSS) and Leadnow are organizing free transportation to the advance polls with a self titled "Shuttlemob" which will run all over town from 11:30 - 3:00. After the Shuttlemob they are hosting a social gathering at the Ledge Pub at 7:30, 1140 Government St, featuring music, food and celebration.

"We are excited there is so much energy around this election. This weekend we will translate that energy into votes," said local organizer, and current UVSS Chairperson James Coccola. "Our event is just one of over 40 happening across the country."

The idea to organize voter socials blossomed out of the desire of young people to get together with friends of all generations, vote, and talk about the issues that matter to them for the next Parliament. expects that on Saturday over a thousand people will attend voter socials.

"During this election, young people have mobilized around the issues we care about in an unprecedented manner. We are standing up, standing together and saying that we’re here to stay," said Jamie Biggar, Executive Director of "Youth across the country will make our votes count."

"We know that people are far more likely to vote if their friends are doing it, and if they think it will make a difference," said Coccola. "Voting together is about more than fun, it’s a chance to show that we are getting out to vote in numbers. We are coming together to say that we are going to be a strong voice through the end of this election, and afterwards."

Students at the University of Victoria made national waves with their "Respect" votemob, which has over 21,000 views on youtube. The organizers are expecting a good turnout at both events.

A map of voter socials planned across Canada can be found at the Leadnow site, here.

David Beers is editor of The Tyee.

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