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Toronto municipal election: How to vote

NEWS STAFF | posted Monday, Oct 22nd, 2018

Toronto voters head to the polls Monday in a municipal election made unexpectedly dramatic with the slashing of city council.

Residents will be voting for mayor, councillor, and school board trustee in 25 wards – many of which see incumbent councillors battling it out for the same seat.

Here’s what you need to know before you head out to the polling stations:

Who am I voting for?

  • Mayor
  • Ward Councillor
  • Toronto District School Board trustees
  • Toronto Catholic District School Board trustees
  • Conseil scolaire Viamonde trustees
  • Conseil scolaire catholique MonAvenir trustees


Click here for a full list of candidates.

Who can vote?

You can vote in Toronto’s municipal election if you are:

  • A Canadian citizen
  • At least 18 years old
  • Reside in the City of Toronto
  • Do not reside in Toronto, but you or your spouse own or rent property in the city
  • Not prohibited from voting under any law

When and where do I vote?

On election day you can vote from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. in the ward you reside in. Click here to find your ward and polling station.

What shall I bring to vote?

Bring your voter information card as well as one piece of identification that shows your name and address in Toronto.

If you did not receive your voter information card your name will not be on the voter’s list, but you can still vote at a polling station with acceptable forms of identification and your name will be added to the list.

If you have misplaced your voter information card, you can print it at home or download it to your phone. To start, click here and enter your address.

Note: your voter information card cannot be used as identification.

What can be used as identification?

The following are a few forms of acceptable identification that may be used for voting purposes:

  • Government-issued document, such as a driver’s licence or photo ID card
  • Credit card statement, bank account statement, cancelled personalized cheque, or a loan agreement
  • Hydro, telephone, cable TV, water, or gas bill
  • Pay stub or T4 statement

Click here for a full list of acceptable forms of identification.

What can I expect at the polling station?

Arriving at the polling station

When you arrive at the polling station you will be greeted by an election official who will:

    • Ask for identification showing your name and address in Toronto
    • Check your identification against the voters’ list, then cross your name off the list or check your identification and add your name to the list.
    • Put your ballot into a secrecy folder and show you how to mark your ballot
    • Direct you to the voting screen

Casting your ballot

When you are ready to cast your vote behind the voting screen you will:

  • Mark your ballot by filling in the empty oval to the right of the candidate you choose, voting only once for each office listed.
  • Place your marked ballot in the secrecy folder
  • Take your ballot to the election official who will feed in into the tabulator
  • Once the tabulator has accepted the ballot, your vote has been successfully counted.

Here is what a sample ballot looks like:

City of Toronto sample ballot by CityNewsToronto on Scribd

What happens if I make a mistake or there is a problem with my ballot?

  • If you make a mistake or change your mind about who to vote for, take your ballot back to the election official. The official will cancel your ballot and issue you another one.
  • If there is a problem with your ballot the tabulator may return it. The election official will give you the choice of getting a new ballot or having the tabulator accept it as marked.


Can I ask a friend or interpreter to help me cast my ballot?

If for some reason you are unable to mark your own ballot, you can ask a friend to help you and they are allowed to go behind the voting screen with you. A person can act as a friend only once except for family members or in the case of nursing homes.

Your friend will have to swear declaration to:

  • mark the ballot as directed by you, the voter
  • not try to influence you in making your choice
  • keep who you voted for a secret

If you need an interpreter, you can ask anyone who is not a candidate or scrutineer to act as one. They will also be allowed to go behind the voting screen with you.

An interpreter must also swear a declaration to truthfully translate any declaration, document or question put to the voter and the answer.

What if I am not able to vote?

If you are an eligible voter but are not able to cast your ballot, you can appoint another eligible elector to vote on your behalf. For everything you need to know about that process, click here.

Is the voter toolkit available in other languages?

Information on how to vote has been translated into 25 languages, and is available online or at the polling station. Click here to learn more.


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