Frequently asked questions

What about COVID-19?

A:

The health and safety of delegates, staff, and volunteers is Equal Voice’s priority. We will continue to follow the advice of public health authorities, and are monitoring the situation closely. Information on our website regarding the program will be updated regularly.

What is Equal Voice?

A:

Equal Voice is a multi-partisan organization dedicated to electing more women to all levels of political office. For more information please visit our about page and don’t forget to subscribe to our mailing list.

What is Daughters of the Vote (DOV)?

A:

Daughters of the Vote is an ambitious initiative by Equal Voice that began in 2017 to mark the 100th anniversary of (some) women getting the right to vote in Canada, and the still incomplete journey of women’s full participation in politics today.

Thanks to support from the Department for Women and Gender Equality, and our corporate and philanthropic partners, Equal Voice will be holding the 3rd iteration of the program from March 8-10, 2021.

The objective of the program is to ensure that 338 emerging young women and gender-diverse leaders, among others, become familiar with Canada’s political institutions and those women and men serving in them – so that they are equipped and inspired to participate in the formal political sphere and take action in their local communities in the years and decades to come.

Equal Voice's ultimate goal is to ensure women are dynamic and equal participants at every political decision making table in the country.

Who can apply to DOV?

A:
  • Applicants must self-identify as women, or gender-diverse, or non-binary.
  • Applicants cannot have participated as a delegate in DOV in 2017 or 2019.
  • Applicants must be born on, or between January 1st, 1993 and December 31st, 2001, no exceptions.. Proof of age will be required ahead of participation in the program. Government-issued identification may be required for travel.
  • Applicants must be fully available from March 8 to 10, 2021, as well as potential travel dates March 7 and 11, depending on your place of residence, and be legally able to travel domestically within Canada.
  • Applicants must live in Canada, or be able to return to Canada if currently abroad (at their own expense), on/by the program start date.
  • For full eligibility criteria and to apply, please visit the application page.

Why has the age for eligibility to the program changed?

A:

In an exciting new development, Equal Voice decided to change the age requirement for participation to ensure individuals who applied for the 2017 and 2019 programs, but were not accepted, are eligible to apply for the 2021 program!

I was a delegate in 2017/2019. Can I apply again?

A:

No. To ensure that as many young women and gender-diverse youth as possible have the opportunity to participate in this dynamic program, we will not be accepting applications from those who have already been a delegate.

If you are a former delegate and you are interested in taking part in the 2021 program, please consider volunteering! To learn more please subscribe to our newsletter for updates or visit us again closer to the event date.

What riding should I apply for?

I currently live in X (city), but have also lived in Y (city), and was born and raised in Z (city) - what riding should I apply for?

A:

Applicants may choose which riding they apply to represent. A strong application will show connections and or/community engagement in the riding/community, and therefore we recommend applying for the riding you have either spent the most time in, or have engaged in the most.

When will I know if I have been selected?

A:

Applicants will receive an email indicating whether or not they have been selected for the program by October 31st, 2020. Please check your junk mail if you have not received anything from EV by this date.

If you did not receive a response by this date, please contact dov-hds@equalvoice.ca

Other inquiries regarding the status of a completed application before this date may not receive a response. We appreciate your understanding and patience as we handle a higher-than-usual level of correspondence, and must triage accordingly.

Can I withdraw my application if I change my mind?

A:

Yes. You can withdraw your application at any time. Please send an e-mail to dov-hds@equalvoice.ca to withdraw your application. We do ask that you let us know as soon as possible if you’ve made the decision to withdraw - there are thousands of applicants hoping to participate in the program.

Will I be given feedback on my application if I am not selected as a delegate?

A:

Equal Voice is a not-for-profit organization, within limited human and financial resources. We are not able to provide individual feedback on applications at this time.

What are the selection criteria?

A:

Equal Voice selection committees will be looking at how delegates demonstrate current or potential leadership, community engagement, and the positive impact this program could have on selected delegates and their ridings.

Why does Equal Voice need to know about my identity?

A:

Equal Voice is committed to equity, diversity and inclusion in all of our programs. DOV seeks to provide opportunities to young women and gender-diverse youth from diverse backgrounds and lived experiences.

If you prefer not to disclose this information in your application, there is a “prefer not to say option” - and selecting this option will not affect whether or not you are selected for the program.

Do I need political experience to be selected for the program?

A:

No. DOV is a program intended to engage young women and gender-diverse youth in the formal political process. We are not looking for previous political experience or engagement as part of the selection process.

Among other things we are looking for individuals who would benefit from learning more about our political institutions, and are interested in getting more involved. Prior experience is by no means required!

My Member of Parliament (MP) and/or an elected official from my riding has recommended me for the program. Does this mean I am automatically selected?

A:

No. While we will take all recommendations into consideration, the DOV program is open to individuals regardless of political experience or networks. A recommendation from an elected official does not guarantee your acceptance into the program, however reaching out to your local MP could strengthen your application, and can be included if you wish.

I applied in 2017 and/or 2019 and was not chosen. Can you give me advice for my 2021 application?

A:

Equal Voice is a not-for-profit organization, within limited human and financial resources. We are not able to provide individual feedback on applications at this time.

However, here are some tips for writing your application:

  1. Be authentic. We want to know who you are and why you and your community would benefit from your participation in the program!
  2. Complete the entire application. Incomplete applications will not be considered. If you don’t know the answer to a question, it’s okay to say that. Tell us something else about yourself!

What is the program/schedule for the events in Ottawa?

A:

The Equal Voice team is working hard to build an exceptional program for the events in Ottawa. We are still in the earlier planning stages, however here (link) is the general program outline, as well as the programs from previous iteration of the program (links).

Note: the 2021 program outline is subject to change. Equal Voice will do its best to communicate all program changes as early as possible.

Do I need to attend the entire program?

A:

Yes. Delegates are expected to be fully available and attend events for the duration of the entire program. While no workshop or event is mandatory, delegates will be provided multiple options during most time slots to ensure there is something for everyone!

What costs are covered for delegates who are selected?

A:

Equal Voice will cover all reasonable expenses related to participation of delegates in the program. This includes (but is not be limited to):

  • Travel (within Canada only) for delegates from their home to Ottawa.
  • Shared accommodation with 1 (or more) delegates in a hotel in Ottawa.
  • Three meals per day of the program.
  • On-site registered Childcare.
  • Other reasonable expenses related to the program, to be determined by Equal Voice.

We recommend that delegates bring $100 with them for personal spending, but this is not required to participate in the program, as all essential costs will be covered.

Do I need to share a room with someone?

A:

Generally, delegates will be expected to share a room with another delegate participating in the program. Upon selection, delegates will receive more detailed information regarding accommodations. There will be a limited number of single rooms available for accessibility or other reasons on a case-by-case basis. However, given the limited number of hotel rooms available, we cannot guarantee approval of all requests received.

Selected delegates will be asked to provide more detailed information regarding their accessibility requirements. It is important to EV that delegates be able to partake fully in the program and we are committed to making DoV accessible to all.

What costs are NOT covered for delegates who are selected?

A:

Equal Voice is not in a position to cover the following expenses.:

  • Lost wages for time off work.
  • General spending money for souvenirs or other personal items.
  • Travel to Ottawa from outside of Canada. (If you are currently residing outside of Canada, you are responsible for all costs and time associated with returning to either Ottawa or to your home riding in Canada ahead of the program, as well as your return).
  • Travel and accommodation for dependents/partners/spouses/parents, except where there is an accessibility need. This will be determined on a case by case basis.
  • Medical or travel insurance for participating delegates.
  • Medications or supplements (prescription or over the counter medicines).
  • Costs associated with non-program activities (i.e. if delegates choose to attend a non-program related event while in Ottawa).
  • Taxis/travel costs to get you to and from the airport/bus/train from your hometown, except where there is an accessibility need.

I have to miss school/work to attend this program. Will EV provide me with a written letter?

A:

Yes. EV can provide a letter to delegates confirming their participation in the program. EV cannot, however, provide medical or legal notes for employers or educational institutions. Whether or not your employer or educational institution accepts the letter is at their sole discretion.

Will I get to sit in the House of Commons if I am selected as a delegate?

A:

No program components are confirmed for the 2021 program. Acceptance to the program does not guarantee the opportunity to speak in, or sit in, the House of Commons.

Will I get to meet my MP or another elected official of my choice if I participate in the program? Do I have to meet my MP?

A:

We encourage delegates to meet with their MP if they are comfortable doing so. In the past both delegates and MPs have found these meetings very enriching.  EV cannot guarantee that you will have the opportunity to meet any individual or elected official ahead of, during, or after the program. EV will not be organizing one-on-one meetings between delegates and MPs; however we will facilitate contact with consent from delegates.

Delegates are not obligated to meet with their MP, and meeting any MP is not a requirement of the program.

Do I need to and/or should I book my own travel and accommodations?

A:

No. Please do not book any travel or accommodations. Equal Voice will book all travel and accommodations for delegates. Delegates will not be reimbursed if they book their own travel or accommodations.

Will childcare be provided?

A:

EV will provide on-site childcare for delegates dependent children the duration of the program by registered caregivers at no personal expense to delegates. If selected, delegates will receive more detailed information, and at that time will be provided the opportunity to indicate whether or not they would like to use this free service during the program.

I have dietary restrictions - will I be able to eat all the meals?

A:

Selected delegates will receive more detailed information, and will be asked to provide any allergies or dietary restrictions at that time. EV and partner venues will do their best to accomodate all dietary restrictions and allergies.

Our meal plan is already built to meet the needs of the following diets: Halal, Kosher, Vegetarian, Vegan, and Peanut-Free.

If you have significant restrictions beyond what is listed above, or serious allergies, you will have the opportunity once selected to speak with a delegate officer. At that time, EV will inform you of whether or not we can fully meet your dietary restrictions and needs, and come up with a plan so you can fully participate in the program.

What kind of services and resources will EV provide for delegates during the program?

A:
  • EV is still in the planning stages of DOV 2021, but will to date be providing the following services/resources to delegates:
  • Cost-free child care.
  • Counsellors/support workers available 24/7.
  • There will be Indigenous Elders on site for the duration of the program.
  • A prayer room has been reserved on-site with 24/7 access.
  • If you require additional religious or cultural accommodation, more detailed information will be sent out and delegates will be invited to share more information about what they require in order to fully participate in the program.
  • EV staff will be on-site 24/7 to answer questions and help with any issues that may arise.
  • A third-party ombudsperson will be available 24/7 to help resolve any issues relating to harassment, bullying, or conflict that may occur between delegates.
  • Subject to date and time availability, volunteers will be made available to attend meetings during business hours with delegates who may not be comfortable or are nervous about attending on their own (i.e., meeting an MP or Senator).
  • Decompression room space.

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