Yukon NDP Calls for the Establishment of a Select Committee on Electoral Reform

Tomorrow the Yukon NDP will be calling on the Legislative Assembly to establish a Select Committee on Electoral Reform. The proposed all party committee would see the resumption of efforts to get electoral reform back on the agenda in a manner that would allow all Yukon citizens to have their say. It would also address concerns that the Commission on Electoral Reform, as currently set up by the Yukon Liberal Government, undermines the authority and independence of the Legislative Assembly.

“How citizens select their elected leadership is fundamental to effective democracy,” said MLA Liz Hanson. “Establishing a select committee on Electoral Reform is the best mechanism to study proposed changes in a collaborative manner that does not lead to the divisive rhetoric we see dominating the discussion today. The Yukon Legislative Assembly has, in the past, effectively used select committees to guide public discussion on important matters such as fracking, off-road vehicles and anti-smoking legislation.”

“We know that both the Yukon Liberal Party and the Yukon Party have expressed disagreement over some aspects of our motion,” said Hanson. “We invite them to amend the motion in a manner they see fit, with the hopes of achieving consensus on this issue.”

Electoral reform continues to be a priority for many Yukoners since the last territorial election. Both the Yukon NDP and the Yukon Liberal parties committed in their platforms to address it. This fall, the Chair of the Liberal Government’s Electoral Reform Commission resigned, effectively halting all work of the Commission.

The Yukon Legislative Assembly which is accountable to Yukon Citizens and not the Executive Council Office which reports to the Premier alone, is the appropriate place to determine the process for reviewing and proposing changes to Yukon’s electoral process.