Permanent Resident voting rights

Expanding municipal right to vote will build inclusion, stronger neighborhoods says Vision Vancouver candidate

It's time that permanent residents in Vancouver are granted the right to vote in civic elections, says Vision Vancouver by-election candidate Diego Cardona, who will champion the issue if elected to city council.

“There are about 60,000 permanent residents living in the City of Vancouver. There is a growing conversation across Canada about the importance of expanding the right to vote in municipal elections to permanent residents,” said Cardona. “It would be an important step to help include and strengthen ties with newcomers, and build more connected neighborhoods. At a time when Donald Trump and others are trying to build walls and tell people they are not welcome, we can send a strong signal that Vancouver is an inclusive, progressive place to live by granting the right to vote for permanent residents for City Council, Park Board, and School Board.”

Permanent residents work, pay taxes, send their kids to schools, and can join provincial and federal political parties to vote in leadership races — but they cannot vote in municipal elections. Currently 11 other municipalities across Canada are working to expand the right to vote to permanent residents, including the City of Toronto, which asked the Ontario government to take action.

Vancouver's Engaged City Task Force advocated for expanding voting rights to permanent residents as a key recommendation of their report. The province of British Columbia would need to enact legislation to enable permanent residents to vote in local elections.

Vancouver’s by-election for one City Councillor and nine School Board trustees takes place on October 14. Advance voting is open on October 10. Diego Cardona is Vision Vancouver’s candidate, while the NPA are running a former oil and gas lobbyist and failed BC Liberal candidate.

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Diego Cardona is Vision Vancouver's candidate for City Council in the October 14 by-election. You can learn more about Diego, his colleagues on the Vision Vancouver education team here.