FTQ’S REACTION TO THE ELECTORAL REFORM BILL

The FTQ is a member of the Coalition for Electoral Reform Now!.

Montreal, September 25, 2019 – The Fédération des travailleurs et travailleuses du Québec (FTQ) is very disappointed in Bill 39, which proposes a reform of the voting system.  The bill would push back the first election conducted under proportional representation to 2026 at the earliest, and it makes the change dependent upon the outcome of a referendum on the ballot at the same time as the next general election.

Serge Cadieux, the FTQ’s General Secretary, pointed out, “We are all the more disappointed knowing that the Prime Minister, by reneging on his promise to conduct the next election in 2022 under a mixed member proportional system, is intensifying cynicism in the political process by succumbing to pressure from a number of his MPs who fear losing their seats in a proportional system.  What a pity.”

The FTQ reminds us that in May 2018, before the October election, the Coalition Avenir Québec (CAQ), the Parti Québécois (PQ) and Québec Solidaire (QS) all signed an agreement in which they promised to abolish the current voting system and substitute a mixed member proportional representation system in time for the election of 2022.

Furthermore, by proposing a referendum on the voting system at the same time as the next election, the Prime Minister is reneging on another of his commitments in which he had declared, a few weeks before the October 2018 vote, that “an election campaign provides sufficient authority for the elected government itself to alter the voting system”.

The Secretary General added, “A referendum held simultaneously with an election is not a good idea.  Elections are about judging governments on their achievements and the platforms of political parties. By introducing a referendum at the same time as a general election, there is a risk of confusing matters.”

The FTQ, the largest labour organization in Quebec, represents more than 600,000 workers.

SOURCE: FTQ

Information: Jean Laverdière, 514 893-7809, [email protected]