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Meeting Summary – Annual General Meeting of the Advisory Committee of Political Parties – June 21–22, 2010

Voter Information Card as Proof of Identity at the Polls

The evaluation of the 40th general election revealed that voters are aware of the new identification requirements; however, some groups of voters found providing proof of their address more difficult than the general population. To mitigate this challenge, Elections Canada is exploring the possibility of adding the voter information card (VIC) to the list of authorized documents for an elector. Specific groups who had challenges in proving their address include seniors in residences and long-term care facilities, Aboriginals living on-reserve and students living away from home. These groups would be targeted for testing the VIC as identification in a by-election, possibly this fall, and eventually in a general election.

Discussion with ACPP Members

A few members voiced their disapproval, maintaining that the effort and possible cost of the project didn't seem to be validated by the need for further identification at the polling station, nor by the limited scope to which it is targeted. Some members felt that proof of address should not be a condition for one to participate in a democratic process.