** Please find the “Voting in Quebec provincial election: Information for Students” following the statement **
On August 1, the Quebec National Assembly was dissolved and an election called for September 4. The election call comes without a resolution to the Quebec student strike, and in fact is taking place over the same period of time in which the CEGEPS and universities still on strike are being ordered back to class by Law 12 (better known at Law 78), which was passed on May 18.
The SSMU Executive would like to express its disappointment that the election is taking place at this particular time. A campaign during the summer makes it more difficult for those of our constituents who have been outside of Quebec for the summer but who otherwise may qualify to vote to be engaged in the electoral process if they so choose. The process of registering to the list of electors, for example, may take some time, and those returning at the end of August will have to juggle this process with all of the other tasks that come at this time of year.
Finally, the SSMU calls on all political parties to show leadership and flexibility in regards to the issue of the current student strike. There is a need for true dialogue between student groups and the government, as well as other members of Quebec society, in discussing the role of post-secondary education in this province and how best to ensure that it remains accessible for all students regardless of background. The SSMU will continue to advocate on behalf of our constituents over the course of the election.
Finally, the SSMU calls on all political parties to show leadership and flexibility in regards to the issue of the current student strike. There is a need for true dialogue between student groups and the government, as well as other members of Quebec society, in discussing the role of post-secondary education in this province and how best to ensure that it remains accessible for all students regardless of background. The SSMU will continue to advocate on behalf of our constituents over the course of the election and into the future.
Robin Reid-Fraser, your Vice President (External)
Voting in Quebec provincial election: Information for Students
Dear SSMU members,
As you may have heard, on August 1 the Quebec National Assembly was dissolved and a provincial election was called for September 4.
Here is a summary of voting eligibility and methods, taken from the website of the Directeur générale des elections du Québec. For more information, consult the website at http://monvote.qc.ca/en/ (English version).
To vote in the election, you must be 18 years of age, a Canadian citizen, and have lived in Quebec for at least 6 months.
List of Electors (Voters)
Now that the election has begun, the Directeur générale des élections du Québec will send out a notice everyone who is currently on the list of electors, no later than August 12. It will also be possible to check online whether you are on the list at http://www.monvote.qc.ca/en/trouverBV_formulaire.asp.
If you are not on the list, or if any of your information is incorrect, you can go to a revision office to register to be on the list or make changes. The offices will be open between August 13th and 21st, 9 am to 9 pm Monday-Friday and 9 am to 5 pm Saturday and Sunday.
Locations of revision offices is available at http://www.monvote.qc.ca/en/trouverBV_formulaire.asp as well.
In order to get on the list, you must present two pieces of identification. Once which shows your name and date of birth, such as a birth certificate or health card, and another which shows your name and address, such as a drivers license, telephone bill or electricity bill. You will be asked to swear under oath that you have resided in Quebec for 6 months.
Change of Address
If you move before August 21st, you can vote in your new riding by going to the revision office for your new address and change your information there.
If you will be unable to vote on September 4, you can vote at an advance poll on August 26th and 27th. The location of your advance poll will be on the notice you’ve been sent, or found at http://www.monvote.qc.ca/en/trouverBV_formulaire.asp.
5 additional days to vote will also be offered, August 24, 25, 28, 29 and 30. To cast a vote on those days, you must go to the office of the returning officer or a designated office. The locations of these offices should also be available on the above website.
Voting in Person (at Advance Polls or on Election Day)
In order to vote at a polling station, you must bring a document which establishes your identity, such as a health card, drivers license, a Canadian passport or a certificate of Indian status.
On September 4, polling stations will be open from 9:30 am to 8:00 pm.
As you may have seen from the MRO sent from McGill, there will be no classes held on September 4, so as to ensure that all electors have enough time to make it their respective polling stations. If you are working that day, your employer is required by law to give you a 4 hour block during which to cast your vote. For example, if you normally work until 5 pm, you would be able to leave at 4 pm.
Voting by mail if outside Quebec
To vote by mail if you are outside Quebec during the election, you must meet a number of conditions.
1) You are qualified to vote ie you are at least 18 years old and a Canadian citizen.
2) When you left Quebec, you had lived there for at least 12 months
3) You intend to return to Quebec
4) You were outside of Quebec for two years or less. (Exceptions to this exist, and for more information see http://www.monvote.qc.ca/en/edv_bvh.asp#n2)
You must register to do so by August 15. There is a registration form on the Directeur website, also found at http://www.monvote.qc.ca/en/edv_bvh.asp#n2 and this must be sent in with identifying documents either by mail, fax or email.
Once you have registered you will receive documents to vote, and information about relevant candidates. Once you’ve received your mail-in ballot you must send it in so that the Chief Electoral Officer receives it in Quebec City no later than 8 pm on September 4.
We will keep you up to date with more information as the election progresses. If you have any specific questions or concerns, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.