BON 2020 Elections Update
On Thursday April 9, 2020, BON Leadership received a letter from Indigenous Services Canada, Manitoba Regional Director General, Stephen Traynor advising of new legislation that would allow First Nations Governments the ability to postpone their elections due to the COVID19 pandemic crisis.
“Advice and guidance from provincial and local public health experts emphasizes physical distancing and avoidance of large gatherings wherever possible. For this reason, we strongly advise against proceeding with elections where possible.”
Excerpt from ISC letter
The new legislation provisions allow current Chiefs and Councils to extend their terms of office for up to 6 months. If it is still necessary to postpone the election a second time in order to prevent, mitigate or control of the spread of diseases on reserve, the council may set an additional extension period of up to six (6) months after the end of the first extension.
Prior to Thursday’s announcement Band Councils had the authority to appoint a Designated Authority to ensure that essential services and programs were still operational. BON leadership held a telephone conference on Tuesday April 7, 2020 with ISC representative Charles Marcoux to answer questions that Council had with respect to the appointment of designated authorities. BON leadership received a request after this call from ISC requesting BON not decide until Thursday April 9, 2020, as ISC headquarters would be releasing new information regarding band elections. BON Leadership agreed to wait for the new information.
A decision will be made on Tuesday April 14,2020 with respect to the 2020 BON Elections. Membership will be advised at this time.