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June 8, 2009
Public forum to discuss municipal voting rights for permanent residents
There are more than quarter of a million adults living in Toronto who are not Canadian citizens and consequently do not have the right to vote in local elections.

As part of its commitment to social inclusion and civic participation, the City of Toronto is holding a public forum to explore the issue of voting rights for non-citizens. Mayor David Miller and Councillor Janet Davis will host an international panel discussing the question: Should permanent residents who are not Canadian citizens have the right to vote in municipal elections?

Torontonians are invited to ask questions and express their views on this important issue.

Date: Wednesday, June 10
Time: 7 p.m.
Location: Council Chamber, City Hall, 100 Queen St. W., Toronto
Television Broadcast: Monday, June 15 at 8:30 p.m. on Rogers TV (Cable 10 and 63)
For complete broadcast details visit

The international panel members are

- Astrid de Vries, Deputy Consul-General, Netherlands Consulate, Toronto. Non-citizens have had the right to vote in local elections in the Netherlands since 1985.

- Diana Salas, Associate Director, Women of Color Policy Network, Wagner School of Public Service, New York University and member, New York Coalition to Expand Voting Rights. A bill to extend voting rights to legal residents of New York City was first introduced into NYC Council in 2005. A broad coalition of groups has been advocating for the passage of the bill.

- Alan Broadbent, Chairman of the Maytree Foundation, the Caledon Institute of Social Policy and the Tamarack Institute. He is also the author of Urban Nation: Why we Need to Give Power Back to the Cities to Make Canada Strong.

Toronto is Canada's largest city and sixth largest government, and home to a diverse population of about 2.6 million people. It is the economic engine of Canada and one of the greenest and most creative cities in North America. Toronto has won numerous awards for quality, innovation and efficiency in delivering public services. 2009 marks the 175th anniversary of Toronto's incorporation as a city. Toronto's government is dedicated to prosperity, opportunity and liveability for all its residents.

Media contacts:
Cher Jones, Sr. Co-ordinator Publicity and Communications, 416-392-5349,
Councillor Janet Davis, Ward 31, Beaches-East York & Chair of Community Development and Recreation Committee, 416.392.4035



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