Secrétariat aux institutions démocratiques et à la participation citoyenne
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A Word from the Minister
Following acceptance of a motion to create the Select Committee on the Election Act, the Committee was put into place, a citizens’ committee was formed to assist it, and special consultations were held by the Committee last November. Clearly, this is a new initiative in Québec’s democratic history.
We are not simply living through a historic moment. We are taking part in it. We are at the very heart of a democratic process that we have set in motion: the renewal of our democratic institutions.
This Committee is very special in itself. For the first time, MNAs and citizens have been brought together—four men and four women who were randomly selected following a public call for candidates. Over 2,300 people expressed interest.
This parliamentary committee has also proven to be special in that it provides a platform for citizens who do not wish to submit a brief. Thus, anyone who so wishes may express his or her views on the different issues before the Committee.
Finally, this select parliamentary committee will be travelling through the province. To reach as many citizens as possible, the government and the National Assembly have agreed to go ahead and open the debate to the entire population—not only out of a wish for equity and transparency, but also because of a conviction that the contribution of all citizens to the discussion is essential to the future of our democratic institutions.
Beginning next January 24, the Select Committee on the Election Act will be undertaking a public consultation across Québec by holding hearings in 16 towns and cities. The public may procure an information booklet that details the subjects to be discussed at the hearings. As well, a summary of this booklet will also be distributed to all Québec households. So as not to exclude anyone who wishes to express a view, the Committee will be resorting to the latest technologies, i.e., videoconferencing and consultation via the Internet.
I therefore invite all of you to take an active part in the hearings of the Select Committee on the Election Act. All aspects of democratic life will be dealt with, aspects that closely affect you. Be it the electoral system—the one proposed in the draft legislation to replace the Election Act versus the one we have now—or be it voting provisions and incentives to elect more women and more candidates from ethnocultural and Aboriginal minorities, all of these points for discussion are of concern to us and remind us that we have a duty to care about the future of our democratic institutions.
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|Mise en ligne : February 3, 2006|