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Ron Cannan

Fair Elections Act and Voter ID

In response to Bill C-23, the Fair Elections Act, concerns have been raised that by removing the ability to vouch for someone at the ballot box, as the bill proposes, some Canadians will not be able to exercise their right to vote, especially our most vulnerable citizens including the homeless, senior citizens and students.

The Fair Elections Act, available to read at www.parl.gc.ca , strives to ensure the protection and integrity of every ballot cast.

Additionally, the current options available for proving one’s identity already include provisions that recognize the challenges facing the homeless, seniors and students.

Throughout the ongoing debate in the House of Commons, and through correspondence sent to me from constituents, it has become clear that some citizens, and even some parliamentarians, are not aware of the many number of ways one can validate their identity at the polling station.

Government issued photo ID with your name and address is the simplest option, but is not the only option; voters can present two original pieces of authorized identification, where both pieces include your name and one includes your address.

For your information, here is the Elections Canada list of valid identification, also available at www.elections.ca. Please note the last item, which is of particular importance to the homeless, seniors and students:

  • Driver's Licence
  • Health Card
  • Canadian Passport
  • Certificate of Canadian Citizenship (Citizenship Card)
  • Birth Certificate
  • Certificate of Indian Status (Status Card)
  • Social Insurance Number Card
  • Old Age Security Card
  • Student ID Card
  • Provincial/Territorial Identification Card
  • Liquor Identification Card
  • Hospital/Medical Clinic Card
  • Credit/Debit Card
  • Employee Card
  • Public Transportation Card
  • Library Card
  • Canadian Forces Identity Card
  • Veterans Affairs Canada Health Card
  • Canadian Blood Services/Héma-Québec Card
  • CNIB ID Card
  • Firearm Possession and Acquisition Licence or Possession Only Licence
  • Fishing, Trapping or Hunting Licence
  • Outdoors or Wildlife Card/Licence
  • Hospital bracelet worn by residents of long-term care facilities
  • Parolee Identification Card
  • Original documents (with name and address)
  • Utility Bill (telephone, TV, public utilities commission, hydro, gas or water)
  • Bank/Credit Card Statement
  • Vehicle Ownership/Insurance
  • Correspondence issued by a school, college or university
  • Statement of Government Benefits (employment insurance, old age security, social assistance, disability support or child tax benefit)
  • Attestation of Residence issued by the responsible authority of a First Nations band or reserve
  • Government cheque or cheque stub
  • Pension Plan Statement of Benefits, Contributions or Participation
  • Residential Lease/Mortgage Statement
  • Income/Property Tax Assessment Notice
  • Insurance Policy
  • Letter from a public curator, public guardian or public trustee
  • One of the following, issued by the responsible authority of a shelter, soup kitchen, student/senior residence, or long-term care facility: Attestation of Residence, Letter of Stay, Admission Form or Statement of Benefits. (Elections Canada also notes that for electors residing in seniors’ residences and long-term care facilities, a photocopy of an item on the list is acceptable. This exception is made to address the fact that when residents are admitted, they routinely transfer their original ID to the administrator or to members of their family.)

The debate on the Fair Elections Act is encouraging us to think about the importance to act as a responsible citizen and exercise our vote.

As citizens, if we truly value that right to vote, surely we accept that the responsibility lies squarely with each of us to ensure we have the proper forms of ID in hand.

When the next federal election comes in 2015, I urge you all to take the time, ensure you have the proper identification, and guarantee your vote will be counted.

 

Have Your Say about the Future of Canadian TV

The CRTC wants your input on the future of television and wants to put Canadians at the centre of their television system to ensure that: as a citizen, you can participate fully in the life of your country, province and community; as a consumer, you have programming choices, on many competitive platforms, such as cable, satellite, the Internet or mobile devices; and as a content creator, you have opportunities to produce content for Canadians and international audiences.

The CRTC is inviting Canadians to provide input by filling out the Let's Talk TV: Choicebook questionnaire, available at www.crtc.gc.ca/talktv until 8:00 pm EST March 14, 2014.

A paper copy of Choicebook can be obtained by contacting the CRTC at 1-877-249-CRTC (2782).

You are encouraged to fill out Choicebook, share it with your friends and family, and seize the opportunity to tell the CRTC your thoughts about the future of Canada’s television system.

I encourage constituents who are interested in the future of TV in Canada to participate and have your say.

The Honourable Ron Cannan is the Member of Parliament for Kelowna-Lake Country and welcomes your feedback at [email protected]. Information on local announcements and federal government programs can be found at www.cannan.ca .



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About the author...

The Honourable Ron Cannan was first elected as Member of Parliament for Kelowna-Lake Country in January, 2006. He was subsequently elected in the 2008 and 2011 federal elections. He is a member of the Conservative Caucus.

On September 13th, 2012 Ron was summoned to be a member of the Queen’s Privy Council for Canada and will provide advice to the Government as a member of the Priorities and Planning Sub-Committee on Government Administration.

Ron successfully uses his experience and knowledge as a long-time Kelowna City Councillor and regional government representative to be an effective and enthusiastic champion for his riding and his constituents.

His greatest satisfaction comes from helping local organizations and citizens obtain the support they require from Ottawa. 

He is also dedicated to doing what it takes to ensure that the growing and vibrant communities in his riding continue to thrive and prosper.

He is proud of the partnership and cooperation between federal, provincial and municipal governments which have resulted in significant infrastructure projects including upgrades to Highway 97, expansion of the Kelowna International Airport, a new horticulture strategy for fruit growers, obtaining a full service passport office for Kelowna and addressing critical economic issues such as labour skills shortages.

He works closely with the local Chambers of Commerce and once a year arranges meetings for the Chamber with Cabinet Ministers and senior policy staff in Ottawa to move forward important local issues such as crime prevention and labour skills shortages.

He is also an ardent champion for important community initiatives including homelessness, mental health, women’s resources, and support of arts and culture.

On Parliament Hill, Ron has been a member of the Standing Committee on International Trade since 2006 supporting initiatives which will broaden the economic opportunities for local businesses and businesses Canada-wide.

In previous parliamentary sessions Ron has been a member of the Standing Committee for Government Operations and Estimates, Veteran’s Affairs, Human Resources and Social Development, the Scrutiny of Regulations Committee, and the Standing Committee for Fisheries and Oceans.

Ron is also involved in a variety of inter-parliamentary organizations: he is Vice Chair of the Canada-US Inter-Parliamentary Group, and a member of the Canada-Taiwan Friendship group.

As Chair of the Conservative Wine Caucus, Ron works with his colleagues across the country to promote the wine regions of Canada.  Ron tabled Motion 218(formerly Motion 601) which supports direct to consumer purchasing of Canadian wine. His motion became Bill C-311, sponsored by MP Dan Albas, seconded by Ron, which was passed into law on June 28th, 2012.

Prior to entering politics, Ron developed a diverse business background as a small business owner and had several years experience in marketing and sales management working with corporations including Coca-Cola, Costco and Corus Entertainment.
 

Very active in his community, Ron has been a Director for both the Central Okanagan Regional District and the Central Okanagan Hospital Board. Ron also served on the Okanagan University College Access to Training Advisory Board, the Glenmore Elementary School Parents Advisory Council, and the Kelowna Christian School Fund Raising Committee.  He was co-founder of the Okanagan Volunteer Festival. Currently Ron is a member of the Sunrise Rotary Club of Kelowna and, along with his wife Cindy, was the honorary Chair of the 2012 Canadian Cancer Society Daffodil Ball.

Ron lives a family-oriented and active lifestyle with his wife Cindy. He is the proud father of three daughters and grandfather to three grandsons.  His hobbies include music and sports.




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The views expressed are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Castanet. Castanet presents its columns "as is" and does not warrant the contents.


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