Law professor gives away 300 turkeys to encourage voting
Toronto's riding of Humber River-Black Creek has one of the lowest voter turnout rates in the country, with just about 48 per cent of eligible citizens checking off their ballots in the last two federal elections.
But Osgoode Hall Law School professor Jamil Jivani is hoping to change that.
This weekend, Jivani, 27, and his students held an elections information session, and sweetened the pot by offering free turkeys to attendees.
"That's what people care about right now, they are celebrating Thanksgiving this weekend and we want to bring democracy to them," said Jivani.
The non-partisan group gave away roughly 300 turkeys, but many people left not only stuffed with food, but also with new knowledge about the issues affecting them in the October 19 election.
"Is it housing? Is it education? Is it criminal justice? Stuff like that I didn't even know it was part of the voting system," said one attendee.
The riding, which lies in the northwest corner of city, is home to a substantial immigrant and low-income population.
First-time voter and local resident Labi Oshodi says that many people from the area simply don't have the time to pay attention to the election.
"When you come in you want to work, you want to do something, so you are not actually focused on the political scene," said Oshodi.
But Jivani hopes that his efforts can help engage the community.
"I feel like voting is one of those times where we are trying to get people to stake their claim here: that you do belong in this country, you do belong to participate and get involved," said Jivani.
With a report from CTV News' Peter Akman