Many people don't even know an election is coming until they start seeing campaign signs on the lawns of all the Mississauga homes they drive past on the way to work. If you've never worked on a political campaign, you probably don't know the special rules and ins and outs of making and posting these campaign signs. Anyone who is curious about how campaign signs are made and what they're meant to accomplish should read on for some useful information.

Most campaign signs are very basic. They're a simple square placard in the party colors (for example, blue for Canadian Progressive-Conservatives and red for American Republicans) with the name of the candidate underneath the words "vote for." Signs also generally carry the name or number of the Bayview Eglinton ward or electoral district that he or she is campaigning for so people who see the signs know who is running in their area. Slogans are sometimes included, but generally not platforms or smear messages against other candidates. Signs are printed en masse by sign companies and paid for with funds for or donated to the campaign.

In order to place a political sign (or any kind of sign) in the yard of someone's Vaughan real estate, you must have permission to do so. Politicians usually ask the registered members of their party who live in the appropriate district to erect signs on their properties. Some candidates may also go door-to-door meeting people and asking to post signs. If you see a sign on your property that you did not approve, you are within your rights to pull it up and throw it away. Signs are effectively useless unless they're placed within the district the candidate is campaigning for.

If you're a property owner, putting out signs can help your favored candidate's chances of getting elected so it can be a great way to show support. However, since politics is such a polarizing issue between many people, be aware that you can give offence by aligning yourself with a particular party. Customers who see a sign for a candidate that rivals theirs outside your Keswick Dental office may actually transfer their business to your competitor. Neighbors with differing political views may start a debate or argument with you or give you the cold shoulder.

It can be tough to put up signs in a district where everything is high rises. In districts like this, you may have to get creative. You might ask building owners if you can roll out a banner on the wall of their building. You might ask party members to display signs in the windows of their downtown Toronto condominiums, or you might place signs on billboards, benches, or the sides of buses.

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