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Quebec: Distinctly Discriminatory, Distinctly Repressive Essay

1210 words - 5 pages

I have been following the events surrounding the upcoming provincial elections in Quebec quite closely and was very excited to finally get my name on to the electoral rolls today. Well aware of the fact that Anglophones who had moved to Quebec from other parts of the country, especially students, were having a hard time getting registered, I decided to do my homework.

I carefully read the voter manual mailed out by the Chief Electoral Officer of Quebec, and a document they released, specifically addressing the question of whether one was domiciled in Quebec. I further examined Book One, Title Three, Chapter II of the Civil Code of Quebec, which establishes who is considered domicile in ...view middle of the document...

The officer I dealt with was Madame Jose-Luciani Reviseure.

She asked me why I was there, and I presented the voter information card that had arrived in the mail without my name and told her I’d come to register to vote. She asked me what documentation I had brought. I opened my folder and started listing what I had brought when she stopped me and said I had a birth certificate from Ontario. I told her that I was indeed born in Ontario but that I’d moved to Quebec in 2009 and had been living here ever since and had documentation to prove it.

She again asked me what documentation I had, and I again began to list it out when she told me that my documentation did not seem to be adequate. I pulled out the voter’s manual that had been mailed to me by the organization for which she worked and pointed out that it said I merely needed two identity papers to register, and that I had the birth certificate and drivers license which were given as examples.

She pointed to the Can You Vote section where the conditions for voting were listed. She said that I did not meet the third condition, “domiciled in Quebec for at least the past six months” and that my documents did nothing to prove that. I insisted that I had gone online to find out the additional documentation I’d need and had come prepared with bank statements and letters from businesses and elected representatives. She rejected that such information had been put out by her organization.

I then asked her where it said that my documents were not adequate and that other documentation was required. She again, with her pen, underlined the word “domiciled” and stated she did not believe I was domiciled. I asked her what else I could bring to prove my status. She then went back to the Can You Vote section of the Voter’s Manual and underlined the second condition, “Canadian Citizen” and said that I had not proved that I was a citizen.

Incredulous, I pointed to my birth certificate and asked what more I needed to prove my Canadian citizenship. She asked whether I had brought my passport with me and I told her I had not. She said that she would need to see that to be sure of my citizenship and added that since “all” my documents were from Ontario (although only one was), that she did not believe that I was domiciled in Quebec.

Although I believe that my domicile in Quebec was clearly demonstrated by the...

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