On October 21st Canadians will head to the polls, many for the first time.

According to Elections Canada, 27.2 Million Canadians will have the ability to shape the outcome of the election.

For the first time in history, Millennials will comprise the largest voting bloc.

According to Abacus Data, Millennials will be the largest age cohort in the 2019 election. It’s the first time in over 40 years that Baby Boomers will not make up the largest group in the electorate.

Voting is a privilege, one that many people take for granted. Lest we forget all of the Canadian men and women who fought hard so that we could continue to have this right.

A close-up of the 2016 Loonie celebrating the 100th Anniversary of Women’s Right to Vote.

Having been raised in a dictatorship, it wasn’t until I moved to Canada and was 30 years old that I was able to vote for the very first time.  It was such an overwhelming feeling to know that I would have a say in how my country was governed; a right I had been denied for so many years. Unfortunately, many people around the world are still denied this right.

In addition to being a privilege, voting is a responsibility. Who you vote for will determine many things that will impact your future – from housing affordability, to climate change, to student debt.  It will also have an impact on how Canada is viewed on a global stage, and the stance it takes on issues such as immigration.

I took great pleasure in learning that Canada set a new record this past weekend with over 4.7 million Canadians voting at advance polls. In a race this close your vote WILL make a difference.

My message to Millennials – many political parties and pundits are expecting you to stay home. Prove them wrong. Be informed. Take a stand on the issues that matter to you. Get out and vote.