GSA Elections 2018
GSA elections have begun and will continue through Tuesday, March 20th at 6:00PM. You should have received an e-mail from the GSA’s Chief Returning Officer (CRO) with your ballot. If you have not yet voted, feel free to find out more about the candidates’ platforms by click this link.
There are a few points to note about our elections this year:
- Google Forms was our backup plan, as simply voting (our previous voting platform) that we hoped to use through the MSU was unable to run, as we ran into some unforeseen issues.
- We considered our member’s concerns about “ballot stuffing and verification of student status,” before we went forward with the Google Form option. Accordingly, we can report that the CRO is the only person within the GSA that has access to the Google Form document. Moreover, we have a CRO for just this reason of accountability; no one in the GSA has any access to the data before the results are called. To put this into perspective, should the GSA use a ballot box, there would be the same risk for ballot stuffing if not more (as additional people come into contact with the box), and accordingly we chose a more transparent and secure method. Nonetheless, the CRO position was created, to ensure the integrity of the elections including confidentiality of each vote cast.
- In the spirit of openness, we have also made the processing scripts the CRO will be using at https://github.com/TvBMcMaster/gsa_election_validation.git. This script simply verifies the international status of the student against the student list received from SGS.
- There have also been concerns voiced about each candidate’s results considering the use of Google Forms, however, it is worth noting that only one position is contested (VP Internal).
- Lastly, a student had concerns about proxy votes and an inability to have them in this format. Please note that the concept of online voting (even when we used simply voting, last year) was to allow for everyone to have greater access to voting and eliminating the need for proxy voting. Moreover, our elections allow voting to occur over a three-day period to ensure the students have additional accessibility.
If you have more questions and/or concerns about this, please direct your queries to the CRO at firstname.lastname@example.org