Prince Rupert Council Supports Permanent Residents' Fight to Vote

Brittany Webster

Prince Rupert Mayor Lee Brain says it's a "no brainer" when it comes to supporting permanent residents in their fight for voting rights.

During Prince Rupert's city council meeting last night, councillors voted in favour of endorsing the Lost Votes Campaign, an initiative to give permanent residents a voice in their own communities with the right to vote in municipal elections.

Councillor Barry Cunningham believes the campaign is an important one and was the first councillor to move in support of Lost Votes, "We have a lot of people that have lived in the community for years and don't have the right to vote. They contribute in a lot of ways and I think it's something that we should emphasize and try to push through."

Mayor Brain will be writing a letter on behalf of council to the minister of municipal affairs and housing in support of the campaign, and council will be endorsing Lost Votes at the 2019 Union of BC Municipalites Convention.

The campaign was brought forward to council last month by Rodrigo Samayoa who has lived in Canada for 11 years and has never been able to vote. He is pleased that council voted in favour and has plans to bring the campaign forward to Smithers' council next.

Many other municipalities throughout the province are already on board with the campaign, including New Westminster, Port Moody, Victoria, and Vancouver.

The 2019 UBCM Convention is schedule for September 23rd to 27th in Vancouver.

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