Media Advisory: NDP introduces motion calling for Select Committee on Democratic Reform


For immediate release

Dec. 2, 2019

Media Advisory: NDP introduces motion calling for Select Committee on Democratic Reform


The NDP Caucus is looking for support from other members of the House of Assembly for a Private Member’s Motion urging government to disband the All-Party Committee on Democratic Reform and instead strike a Select Committee of the House of Assembly on Democratic Reform. The NDP will introduce this motion after Question Period on Wednesday, December 4.


Leader Alison Coffin says the existing All-Party Committee on Democratic Reform is not the best mechanism for achieving meaningful, non-partisan democratic reform.


“The All-Party Committee was struck just before the provincial election when Government had a clear majority. We believe a better, truly non-partisan approach to democratic reform would be to establish a Select Committee that works on behalf of, and reports directly to, the House of Assembly – not a government Minister’s department,” Coffin said.


“The work of democratic reform is too urgent and important to have it housed with a Minister. This work must be done by and accountable to the House of Assembly in order for it to be truly non-partisan.”


A copy of the full motion is available below.


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For further information, contact Zaren Healey White, Director of Communications, NDP Caucus at 729-2137 (o), 693-9172 (c), or zarenhealeywhite@gov.nl.ca.


NDP Private Member’s Motion, Select Committee on Democratic Reform


Whereas democratic reform is an important issue facing our province;


And whereas many individuals and organizations living in our province believe our democracy can and must be reformed, modernized, and strengthened;


And whereas the All-Party Committee on Democratic Reform, struck before the last election, has too narrow a mandate, and is not the best mechanism for achieving meaningful non-partisan democratic reform;


And whereas a better approach to democratic reform would be to establish a non-partisan Select Committee on Democratic Reform that works on behalf of and reports directly to the House of Assembly;


Therefore be it resolved that this House urge Government to disband the All-Party Committee on Democratic Reform;


Be it further resolved that this House establish a Select Committee on Democratic Reform, with a mandate to review and make recommendations on: voting systems and methods; voting age; funding of political parties; the role of third party groups in election campaigns; timing/date of elections; and other items at the Committee’s discretion;


Be it further resolved that, given this Select Committee needs to be, and must be seen to be non-partisan in nature, that the Select Committee consist of the following: two members of the Government, two members of the Official Opposition, two members of the Third Party, and an Independent member, and that the Chair of the Select Committee be elected from within; and


Be it further resolved that the House consider how to ensure this Select Committee has the resources it needs to conduct its work.

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