Opening Statement



Saturday, 28 January 2012

Telephone Voting Approved!

Yes, it's true! At the last staff rep meeting it was announced that the TSU executive approved telephone voting for this spring's election. It can help avoid your issues and concerns from last year. If you are an itinerant or out of school on a class trip, at a meeting or coaching a sporting event, you can still vote. We don't need ballot boxes, short fixed voting times or scrutineers anymore. The voting can be done all day using a school or private phone and the results tabulated within minutes.

Second Vice President Frank Bruno and I put forward an important friendly amendment to further protect the security and integrity of the telephone voting procedures, before we both could support it. Your voter registration number will be mailed to your home rather than handed out at school or otherwise through the TSU office. In addition a second number, for example the last 4 digits of your phone number, will be used as a safeguard against proxy voting. You can vote, as a TSU or TOTL member, but you must do it yourself, which is only fair. Nobody should be going around school collecting numbers and voting for you or the others who don't vote anyway! 

The by-law approved at last spring's UAGM also allows for computer voting. That option can be considered more carefully and in more depth for next year. A paper ballot can be cast in an emergency situation at the TSU office on election day, details still forthcoming. You can hear the candidates' speeches and have a Q+A  at the UAGM.  The executive scheduled May 16 for the UAGM with the Elections to follow on May 24.

No voting system is ever perfect. It takes time to set them up right. It's great that TSU is moving forward using the new communication and info technology available today. If you check my Blog Archives from May - June 2011 you will note that there were many views expressed, especially by our members, about the pro's and con's of in school balloting last year. Paper ballots with manual counts posed many difficulties that our new telephone voting system can address. Ask your staff rep for more details about the announcement and discussion on telephone voting at their last meeting if need be.

You can see my May - June Blog Archives for more of my thoughts on  technological advance, and the issues that arose with paper balloting during our last TSU election. Scroll down the page to the bottom of this blog column. Truly our TSU executive has worked together very well in your interest. Telephone voting will move TSU one step further to improve our unit's voting procedures for you!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

You wrote: "telephone voting ... can help avoid your issues and concerns from last year."
"We don't need ballot boxes, short fixed voting times or scrutineers anymore. The voting can be done all day using a school or private phone and the results tabulated within minutes."
So you basically ignore all the options for secret control over the votes, and for software bugs to disrupt the count-- and you disvalue authentic votes and an accurate count to such a degree that you would ditch all transparency and accountability for the equipment that is run by others??? Pretty dim. And too little attention to the failures of info systems instead of only their possibilities. Voting is too important to leave to software.

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