Electoral reform committee recommends referendum

Government has sent out 15 million postcards to engage the public 

Skeena Bulkley-Valley MP Nathan Cullen was one of a handful of all-party MPs to present a final report about the electoral reform to the federal government earlier this month.

The report recommends a referendum to determine whether Canada should change its first-past-the-post voting system.

The federal Liberals have committed to have a new voting system put in place before the next federal election.

“The prime minister made a black-and-white promise to Canadians to make 2015 the last election under first-past-the-post, and to make every vote count,” said Cullen. “The government has a mandate, the tools, a viable path, and a clear obligation to replace our outdated, unfair voting system with a proportional voting system.”

In a proportional representation electoral system, the share of votes a party receives in an election is reflected in the number of seats they receive in the House of Commons.

“They want who people vote for to mirror who gets to Ottawa to represent folks back home,” said Cullen.

The all-party committee held close to 50 meetings, in every province and territory, and heard from nearly 200 expert witnesses. Tens of thousands of Canadians participated in the consultation process.

The committee found that 88 per cent of expert witnesses and 87 per cent of the public testimony before the committee called for the government to adopt a proportional voting system.

Cullen said that over the past four months, the majority of people who attended the six town halls in his riding also said they want to see a proportional voting system.

In addition, the all-party committee recommends that the government should implement financial incentives for political parties to nominate more women.

The federal government continues to consult with the public about the electoral reform. Earlier this month, government unveiled MyDemocracy.ca – an interactive digital platform where Canadians can take part in the national conversation. This online engagement application is intended to complement the work of the all-party committee.

Opposition MPs and critics have said the government’s online survey is a wasteful exercise. According to The Globe and Mail, government officials acknowledged there are no limits on the number of times that users can respond to the survey.

A postcard inviting the public to join the conversation through MyDemocracy.ca has been sent to almost 15 million Canadian households.

About $330,000 was spent to create the website and government has yet to reveal the cost of sending out the 15 million postcards.



Just Posted

Lakes District Hospital and Health Centre opened in February 2015. (Priyanka Ketkar photo/Lakes District News)
Lack of maternity program, still a problem in Burns Lake

Community members continue to shuttle to far away locations

The adult Cooper’s Hawk was spotted in Burns Lake last month. (Priyanka Ketkar photo/Lakes District News)
What to do when you see a bird band or a banded bird?

Here are some answers this Cooper’s Hawk in Burns Lake lead us to

The chamber recently got a picnic bench made and will be adding a few more to the collection for visitors and Burns Lakers to enjoy. (Priyanka Ketkar photo/Lakes District News)
Burns Lake’s community market gets the official farmer’s market status

The Burns Lake and District Chamber of Commerce’s community market is now… Continue reading

DLES' Le Trois Petits Cochons presentation. (Submitted/Lakes District News)
French play at Decker Lake Elementary School

On May 25, Grade 4-5 students of the Decker Lake Elementary School… Continue reading

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau participates in a plenary session at the G7 Summit in Carbis Bay, England on Friday June 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada donating 13M surplus COVID-19 vaccine doses to poor countries

Trudeau says the government will pay for 87 million shots to be distributed to poor countries

Kelowna-Lake Country MLA Norm Letnick, assistant deputy speaker at the B.C. legislature, presides over committee discussions. The legislature is completing its delayed spring session this week, with most MLAs participating by video conference. (Hansard TV)
B.C.’s daily COVID-19 infections dip below 100 over weekend

Only 68 new cases recorded Monday, four additional deaths

The BC Ferries website went down for a short while Monday morning following a provincial announcement that recreational travel between health authorities can resume Tuesday. (Black Press Media file photo)
BC Ferries’ website crashes in wake of provincial reopening announcement

Website back up now, recreational travel between health regions to resume as of Tuesday

The Kamloops Indian Residential School is photographed using a drone in Kamloops, B.C., Monday, June, 14, 2021. The remains of 215 children were discovered buried near the former school earlier this month. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Communities grapple with what to do with former residential and day schools

Some tear them down as a tool to help healing, others repurpose them as tools for moving forward

FILE – Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry talks about B.C.’s plan to restart the province during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, Tuesday, May 25, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. watching U.K.’s COVID struggles but don’t think province will see similar pitfalls

Studies show that one dose of vaccine is only 33 per cent effective in preventing B.1.617.2 spread

RCMP Const. Shelby Patton is shown in this undated handout photo. RCMP say that Patton was hit by an allegedly stolen truck that he had pulled over on Saturday morning in Wolseley, east of Regina. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, RCMP
Pair charged in Saskatchewan Mountie’s death make first court appearance

Const. Shelby Patton was hit by an allegedly stolen truck that he had pulled over Saturday morning

David and Collet Stephan leave for a break during an appeal hearing in Calgary on Thursday, March 9, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Todd Korol
Appeal Court rejects stay for Alberta couple facing third trial in son’s death

Pair accused in their earlier trials of not seeking medical attention for their son sooner

Highway notices like this come down effective June 14. Public health restrictions on non-essential travel and commercial operation have hit local businesses in every corner of B.C. (B.C. government)
Province-wide travel back on in B.C.’s COVID-19 restart plan

Gathering changes include up to 50 people for outdoor events

Calgary Stampeders’ Jerome Messam leaps over a tackle during second half CFL western semifinal football action in Calgary, Sunday, Nov. 15, 2015.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
CFL football will be played this summer in Canada

Governors vote unanimously in favour to start the ‘21 campaign on Aug. 5

Most Read