Late pay for some Langley election workers

A Langley election worker who was told she would be paid within two weeks of the Oct. 19 federal election was angry to learn it  could be another six weeks before her cheque arrives.

“Nobody (at Elections Canada) said anything to me until this morning when I called to see what was going on,” the woman, who asked to remain anonymous, said Monday.

“I’m pissed off.”

The woman, who was one of several hundred people hired to operate polling stations in the Langleys, said the expected cheque was “just under $270.”

In response to a Times query, Elections Canada confirmed many of the more than 230,000 election workers would not be paid as quickly as promised.

A written statement, posted on the agency website, pleads for patience and promises that steps have been taken to speed things up, “including adding extra shifts in the evenings and on weekends to process the transactions and issue payments as quickly as possible.”

Elections Canada said election workers who were employed as office staff in a returning office would receive their pay within three weeks of election day.

Election workers at advance polls or on election day would be paid within four to six weeks of election day.

And what the agency described as a “small percentage (less than five percent) of election workers who were last-minute hires would be paid within eight weeks of election day.

Their information “may have been entered in the local returning office payment system only after election day,” the agency said.

Elections Canada also offers the option of direct deposit which can “significantly reduce the amount of time required to issue the payment, often from 10 (down) to 2 business days.”

Workers can also call the Elections Canada Payment Inquiry Line at 1-800-823-8488 with questions about their pay.