Electoral Reform is Alive and Kicking in Waterloo Region

The Hon. Bardish Chagger’s office reached out to Fair Vote Waterloo to invite a delegation to meet with the Hon. Karina Gould on Electoral Reform.

Cathy Scott, Byron Weber Becker and Bob Jonkman meet the Hon. Karina Gould and her infant son Oliver outside Waterloo City Hall

The Fair Vote Waterloo delegation Cathy Scott, Bryron Weber Becker and Bob Jonkman met with the current Minister of Democratic Institutions, the Hon. Karina Gould (and Oliver) at Waterloo City Hall

The morning meeting was productive.

Later that afternoon, the KW Liberal Association hosted a meet and greet for the visiting Minister just down the street at Patent Social. Fair Vote Waterloo Co-Chair Bob Jonkman attended the open-to-the-public event in hopes of engaging further with Minister Gould.

Local electoral reform advocates from Fair Vote and others rally to remind Minister Gould that electoral reform is still top of mind for many Canadians voters across the political spectrum.

There were excellent opportunities to discuss Proportional Representation with passersby.

Electoral reformers welcomed the opportunity to show off their artwork and discuss Proportional representation with the Minister of Democratic Institutions.

Canadians are (understandably) unhappy that the Liberals’ Electoral Reform promise was so cavalierly broken.

The Hon. Karina Gould was asked some hard questions.

Electoral Reform isn’t a partisan issue.

I found it interesting how many “honks” we got from passing motorists. Perhaps the greatest irony associated with Mr. Trudeau’s broken promise is that the exercise did more to raise Canadian public awareness of Proportional Representation than anything else in my lifetime.

Proportional Representation is an idea whose time has come. And it’s not going away.

(additional photos are available in my Reminding Liberals Flickr Album)


What a turn out for the Waterloo Region Chapter’s AGM.

The numbers keep going up.

You might even think people are serious about wanting equal and effective votes in a proportional representation electoral system.


Reminding Raj Saini about Electoral Reform

Fair Vote WRC visits Raj

Friday’s Petition Crew

To encourage the Liberals to keep their promise to reform our electoral system,on Friday afternoon (November 10th, 2017) we delivered our 500+ signature Fair Vote petition to Kitchener Centre MP Raj Saini.  We had a brief opportunity to meet with Mr. Saini to explain our frustrations with his government’s failure to deliver on their oft repeated Electoral Reform Promise.

Mr Saini told us the only reason he voted against accepting the ERRE report was the inclusion of a referendum.  (Of course, had the Liberals on the ERRE Committee had been willing to work across party lines with the Greens and NDP there would have been no need for the inclusion of a referendum in the report.)  He did, however, promise to submit the Petition to the House of Commons.

In case you’ve forgotten, this is what Mr. Saini had to say about electoral reform before he was elected MP.

Watch the UK PR Petition Parliamentary Debate online

Canada’s E-616 petition garnered more than 130,000 signatures.  More than any other Parliamentary e-Petition in Canadian history.  There was some thought that this would lead to an actual Parliamentary Debate on the Electoral Reform process promised by the Trudeau Government.

When a Parliamentary e-petition in the UK exceeds 100,000 signatures. it triggers an actual Parliamentary Debate.  Recently an Electoral Reform Petition resulted in just such a debate.

To make votes matter, adopt Proportional Representation for UK General Elections

Proportional Representation for WestminsterThe vast majority wants PR. Our FPTP voting system makes Parliament unrepresentative. One party got 37% of the vote and 51% of seats, while 3 parties got 24% of the vote but share 1.5% of seats. FPTP violates the democratic principle of majority rule and causes problems like costly policy reversals.

The UK has never had a say on PR. As David Cameron himself said, the AV Referendum was on a system that is often less proportional than FPTP, so the rejection of AV could not possibly be a rejection of PR. In fact, so few voters wanted either system on offer that the turnout was just 42%.

There are tried and tested PR systems that keep the constituency link. They would make every vote matter equally, rather than allowing a minority of swing voters in a few marginal seats to pick the government.
UK Parliament e-petition 168657

This petition ran for 6 months and achieved 103,495 signatures.  The debate was quite interesting, and if you’re interested in taking a look, it is still online. (although I am not sure for how long).  For now at least you can see it here http://parliamentlive.tv/Event/Index/c52f8c49-55ac-44c8-bf23-b1705afadaf8 or download the mp3 to watch later.

But even if the video is no longer online, you’ll still be able to read it in Hansard here:
[Of course you won’t get to see the Minister squirm in the text version.]

UK Parliamentary Debate

Both the PR for Westminster and the UK Parliament PR Debate miniposters are Public Domain images..

Open Streets on Sunday!

See you there!

Nathan Cullen #KeepYourPromise Tour in Kitchener

160 people were crammed into a 100 seat room… Kitchener Public Library staff had to turn away as many as 100 others due to fire regulations!

Nathan Cullen talks about Electoral Reform …

… and his work on the ERRE Committee …

…and about the Prime Minster’s broken promise.

Jonathan Cassels spoke about his Electoral Reform Petition e-616

The crowd breaks breaks into small groups…

…brainstorming ideas for the way forward.

…postcards are always popular!

Nathan Cullen with Fairvote Waterloo’s Bob Jonkman, Sharon Sommerville, Don Fraser and Anita Nickerson

Visit our YouTube Channel

Did you know Fair Vote Waterloo has its own FairVoteWRC YouTube Channel?

Fair Vote Waterloo co-chair Sharon Sommerville talks about her feelings of “Real Betrayal” in this 5 minute soundbite from the Day of Action for Electoral Reform.

You can check out our curated playlists on:

Subscribe today!

More Pictures of the National Day of Action on Electoral Reform, 11 Feb 2017

Pictures from the National Day of Action on Electoral Reform held Saturday, 11 February 2017 at Carl Zehr Square at Kitchener City Hall.

Photos by Laurel L. Russwurm.

Sign: Make My Vote Count


People listening to speakers

Listening to speakers

Sign: Trudeau broke his promise


People rallying


Sam Nabi

Sam Nabi

Catherine Fife

Catherine Fife

Richard Walsh

Richard Walsh

Sign: Perform On Reform

Perform On Reform

Sign: Support Voter Reform | Make Every Vote Count | for Equity, Social Justice, Climate Justice


Two signs: Proportional Representation for a Better Democracy | "First Past The Post", Abuse of Dominance, Abuse of Rights, Bad Corporate Behaviour


David Weber

David Weber

Sign: How Can We Reach Consensus If We Don't Understand Their Alternatives


Supporter in the audience


Sign: Nobody believes Liberal excuses


Sam Nabi and Sharon Sommerville

Sam Nabi and Sharon Sommerville

Unhappy citizens in the audience

Unhappy Citizens

Anita Nickerson

Anita Nickerson

An audience member taking pictures

Taking pictures

Sign: 39 ≠ 100

39 ≠ 100

Sign: Justin, You Promised | Make Every Vote Count


Catherine Fife

Catherine Fife

Sign: Perform On Reform

Big sign

People in the audience


Sign: I want my vote to count

Little sign

Nadia Matos and a camera

CTV News

@Lulex (Louisette Lanteigne) holding a sign: Support Voter Reform | Make Every Vote Count | for Equity, Social Justice, Climate Justice


Bob Jonkman

Bob Jonkman

Sharon Sommerville

Sharon Sommerville



Tiger Hat

Tiger Hat

Sign: Democracy demands trust | R.I.P. Democracy | PR -- the peoples choice | Lies -- the Prime Ministers


Oz Cole-Arnal

Oz Cole-Arnal

Mo Markham

Mo Markham

Sign in the gallery: Make My Vote Count


Louisette Lanteigne

Louisette Lanteigne

Food Not Bombs

Food Not Bombs

Aden Seaman

Aden Seaman

Stacey Danckert

Stacey Danckert

Lunch is served

Lunch is served

Alim Nathoo

Alim Nathoo

Hat embroidered with the Liberal logo and "Real Betrayal"

Real Betrayal

Rallying dog

Rallying dog

Sign: Just-In | Nous Sommes Canadiens | Not Fringe | We Believed You | Believe In Us | And Just-ice

Nous Sommes Canadiens

Sign: The 1% is the "Fringe" Group PM Trudeau Should Worry About | #PR Now

The 1%

Photos are copyright ©2017 by the photographers, and used under a CC BY-SACreative Commons Attribution ShareAlike license.

Other pictures of the National Day of Action on Electoral Reform

See You Saturday

Saturday at 1:00pm we’ll be rallying for Electoral Reform in Carl Zehr Square at Kitchener City Hall.

Fair Vote Waterloo folk planning for Electoral Reform

Some popular hashtags:

Hope to #SeeYouSaturday

February 11th Day of Action For Electoral Reform

This is our spiffy poster for Saturday’s National Day of Action for ELECTORAL REFORM event.

If you can print a few copies to put up in your neighborhood that would be enormously helpful.

You can Download the full size colour PDF here (4 MBytes)

or Download the full size Black and White PDF here (3 MBytes)

or Download the full size Duotone PDF here (1 MByte)

or choose the jpg image size you want from Flickr

This poster is released with a CC0Creative Commons 0 Public Domain Dedication which allows anyone to legally print and use it for any purpose.

If you’re in or near Waterloo Region, Ontario, please print and distribute as many posters as possible on public property where allowed Be sure to get permission before posting on private property, in retail stores, on community bulletin boards etc.

Help Make This Event A Success!


Plan to attend if you can, and bring as many friends, family members, neighbors, co-workers, your kid’s teachers … anyone you know!  This isn’t about politicians , it is really about us… we deserve to have our votes count.  It’s only fair!

Share the event on your social media.


Sign up on the Facebook Event Page

Share the event (click on the “share” button at the top of the right sidebar and choose where to share)


Retweet @FairVoteWaterloo’s event announcement

and other tweets about the event between now and Saturday.

For making your own tweets, the event hashtags include:

Bring Your Own Sign

Give your inner child free reign to create your very own sign!

If you’ve got kids, get them involved ~ make it a family art project.  Use Bristol Board or just ordinary cardboard.

Sign Tips

Keep it Simple : One Idea per sign (although you can have another on the back of a double sided sign)

Black and white, primary colours

Big easy to read letters

Not everyone feels they are artistic, so if you’re feeling inspired, if you make extras, no doubt there will be folks happy to carry them.

If you are looking for inspiration, you might get some ideas from the graphics in my PR For Canada or ERRE Flickr Albums.

Sign the Petition

Whether or not you can make it out on Saturday, you can sign the record breaking (85552 signatures as of writing) House of Commons e-616 ePetition here.  You don’t need to set up an account to sign, but you will need to confirm in email before it counts.  As I understand it this one was started by a Waterloo gent.

There is still time for the Canadian Government to adopt electoral reform in time for 2019.
That’s would still be the BEST possible outcome for Canadians.
And it just *might* happen if we make enough noise now.
(If not, we can get to work on making sure the next government does.)