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Nuns denied opportunity to vote in Ontario election

Catholic World News - February 10, 2011

Four nuns were denied their right to vote in the Cambridge (Ontario) municipal election for Catholic school board candidates last fall.

Sister Michael Daniel Dumais, 39, said that a poll worker told her that “because I had taken a vow of poverty, I don’t pay taxes, so I’m not contributing to any school board, and therefore I don’t have a choice in voting for the separate school.” Instead, she and the other nuns were handed an incomplete ballot.

City Clerk Alex Mitchell downplayed the nuns’ complaints, saying that “there’s an onus on the voter to make sure you’re casting the right ballot.”

Cambridge is a city of 120,000 in southern Ontario. In Ontario, Catholic schools are “separate schools” that are accountable to the province’s government.

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Show 5 Comments? (Hidden)Hide Comments
  • Posted by: dover beachcomber - Feb. 15, 2011 6:44 PM ET USA

    Last fall? And it's just now coming to light?? Complain and demonstrate now, Canadian Catholics, or they'll decide they can get away with this kind of thing.

  • Posted by: samuel.doucette1787 - Feb. 10, 2011 10:57 PM ET USA

    Woe Canada! As Peter Vere put it in his recent book title, Canada is the Tyranny of Nice. They are what a secularist soft totalitarianism would look like if it came to the USA, and we're not far behind.

  • Posted by: ltoscan2645 - Feb. 10, 2011 3:04 PM ET USA

    as a Canadian citizen, whose government just passed a bill that enshrines gender "diversity" into law, this story does not surprise in the least. The founding religion of this once great nation and now professed religious are being marginalized more and more everyday, and most Catholics/ Christians don't really seem to care...ST. Joseph Patron of Canada pray for us for we are lost.

  • Posted by: Gaby - Feb. 10, 2011 9:37 AM ET USA

    Paying taxes has nothing to do with one's right to vote. Nobody is obliged to produce an income tax receipt before being given a ballot. And it's not up to a VOLUNTEER poll worker -with no authority, competence or expertise in the matter, but clearly a great deal of prejudice- to decide who can and who can't vote!!! This person clearly overstep his/her VOLUNTEER job description by a mile and the city should do something about it, because it is definitely a case of discrimination.

  • Posted by: Cornelius - Feb. 10, 2011 7:14 AM ET USA

    Just bizarre. By this argument the poor have no right to vote. Canada seems more and more to belong to a separate universe.

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