What is Democracy? • Power resides in the people • Four pillars of democracy: Justice, Equity, Freedoms, Representations • Democratic values = Values of the people • Democratic values = equality, right to vote, fairness, compromise, peacefulness • In Canada decisions are made by the people, by the majority, and often by representation
What is democracy? There are 3 types of government: • Local (municipal) • Provincial/ Territorial • Federal *Each level has elected and appointed citizens who represent the majority
What are the similarities and differences between direct and representative democracy? • In Canada all citizens can participate directly in government matters, but it is hard to do so all of the time for every person. • Travel • Time • Listening to all opinions This is why we use representative democracy
Representative Democracy • In a representative government, the candidate who gets the most votes will represent the majority • This happens in all 3 levels of government: local (municipal), provincial/ territorial, federal
Direct Democracy • Canadian representative democracy is related, but different from the direct democracy practiced in Ancient Athens • Athenian citizens = males who were not Metics of Slaves • These citizens were responsible for being active participants in the government
Direct Democracy • Athens – most important body of government was the Assembly which took place at the Pnyx • Had to be a male citizen over 20 years old • Thousand of men often attended, all had right to speak • Voting taken by counting hands, or sometimes placing coloured stone in a jar
Direct Democracy • Males citizens over 30 were also expected to serve on the Council of 500 or in the courts as a part of the jury.
Direct Democracy Bad things about the Athenian Direct Democracy model: • Not all people could vote • Not all people were considered equal
Direct Democracy in Canada • Sometime in Canada we have referendums or plebiscites. • Example 1982: Division of Northwest Territories are put to a plebiscite. Decision by the direct vote was in favour of division. Thus Nunavut was created in 1993
What if…? What if your class was offered $100 and you had to decide what to do with it… What would the decision-making process be like if your class were a direct democracy? What would it look like if your class was a representative democracy? What would it look like if your class made decision by consensus? What would it look like if you class was a dictatorship?
What are the similarities and differences between direct and representative democracy?
What are the rights and responsibilities of citizens living in a representative democracy? • Canadian rights promised by the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. • 34 sections entrenched into the Canadian Constitution • Rights = Responsibilities • Right to vote = Responsibility to be an informed voter
What are the rights and responsibilities of citizens living in a representative democracy? • It is our responsibility as citizens to tell our government about our needs and concerns, so that the government knows what we need • It is our responsibility to help better our communities for common good
What are the rights and responsibilities of citizens living in a representative democracy?
How does Canada’s justice system help protect your democratic and constitutional rights? • Games need rules/ societies need laws • Constitution is Canada’s supreme document which includes laws and rights (laws uphold rights) • Laws reflect Canadian values (fairness, respect, equality, peacefulness) • The job of the Justice system is to protect the Rights of Canadians by enforcing the law
Supreme Court of Canada • Supreme Court of Canada can review laws if it conflicts with Rights and Freedoms • Protecting these rights and common good is essential to Canadian Democracy
How does Canada’s justice system help protect your democratic and constitutional rights?
How does the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms protect the individual rights and freedoms of all Canadians? • Rights and Freedoms are guaranteed by law since they are entrenched in the Constitution • Laws can be challenged by individuals or groups if they do not feel their rights are being upheld (Justine Blainey)
Sections in the Charter of Rights and Freedoms • Fundamental Freedoms • Democratic Freedoms • Mobility Rights • Legal Rights • Equality Rights • Official Language Rights • Other Rights (aboriginal rights,
Sections of the Charter • Fundamental Freedom- freedom of speech, thought, opinion and religion (in a peaceful manner) • Democratic Rights – Right to vote for representatives in the government. Democratic rights have expanded over the last century (100 years), allowing women and all cultures to vote
Mobility Rights – citizens can move, work, and travel anywhere in Canada • Legal Rights – Protect citizens involved in legal conflict. (Ex: Innocent until proven guilty) • Equality Rights – Ensure equal and fair treatment for everyone. Sometimes this includes accommodations (Ex: building a school elevator for someone in a wheel chair so they may have access to school as other students have.
Official Language Rights – bilingual country (French and Canadian) Government signs, services in both languages. • Other Rights – Aboriginal Rights • Gender Equality Rights added in 1982 (section 28). Equal pay and treatment for women in the work place.
How does the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms protect the individual rights and freedoms of all Canadians? • What types of freedoms and rights are in the Charter?
How does the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms protect collective rights? • Collective rights protect particular groups, these groups have a collective identity (shared beliefs, values, language, culture) • These groups have a long history that precedes (came before) the Confederation of Canada in 1867. • The main Collective Rights that are protected include rights of aboriginal groups and official language minorities
Collective Rights in Canada • Examples of Official Language minorities are Francophones (French speakers) in Lethbridge, or Anglophones (English speakers) in Quebec City • When the Charter was entrenched in 1982, so were the above collective rights
Collective Rights for Aboriginal Peoples after 1982 • First Nations, Metis, Inuit (FNMI) • Regaining Land Titles/ Claims • Regaining Rights • Self- Governance • Control over Natural Resources on their land • Compensation (money) for impacted lands • Consultation over land development
Self- Governance • 1999, Section 77 (1) of the Indian Act, was changed. • Prior only First Nations living on reserves could vote for band leaders. • John Corbiere, chief of Ontario’s Batchwan Nation agrued that First Nations people on reserves and off reserves needed to have a vote in order for their to be equity and fairness
Protecting Collective Rights for Official Language Minorities • Both Francophones and Anglophones were important in establishing Canada as a Confederation, therefore their language rights are important • Government buildings and services must be offered in both languages
How does the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms protect collective rights?
How did the Treaty of La Grande Paix de Montréal address Collective Identity and Collective Rights? • Before European settlement, there were many aboriginal communities. Europeans were the first non-aboriginals to settle in Canada • French wanted to improve the fur-trade between them and the Ouendat and Algonquin. But these First Nations groups were in conflict with the Haudenosaunee • This conflict was preventing the settlement of Montreal, which was important to the French and the fur-trade
Treaty of La Grande Paix de Montreal (1701) • The Governor of New France wanted Peace between all First Nations groups (not just between the Haudenosaunee) • Dozens of First Nations groups met in Montreal to discuss peace and treaty • Approximately 1,300 people from 40 Aboriginal groups come to discuss • These discussions led to the signing of the Treaty of La Grande Paix de Montreal
Treaty of La Grande Paix de Montreal (1701) • Each group’s identity and opinion was respected, thus respecting collective identity • The groups worked together through cooperation and compromise for common good
How did the Treaty of La Grande Paix de Montréal address Collective Identity and Collective Rights?
How do the Treaty of GPM (1701) and the Canadian Charter (1982) compare in addressing individual and collective rights? • These documents were written over 300 years apart, but are very similar in how they address individual and collectiverights
How do the Treaty of GPM (1701) and the Canadian Charter (1982) compare in addressing individual and collective rights? Individual Identity GPM – respected the identity of each FN group CC – guarantees individual rights and freedoms
How do the Treaty of GPM (1701) and the Canadian Charter (1982) compare in addressing individual and collective rights? Collective Identity GPM – respected the identity of each FN group. Treated the French and the FN groups as equal and independent nations CC – respects FN collective identity and official language minorities
How do the Treaty of GPM (1701) and the Canadian Charter (1982) compare in addressing individual and collective rights? Collective Rights GPM – Ensured collective rights for French and FN groups. FN groups could be self-governing and hunt on territorial lands CC – guarantees collective rights of FNMI groups and the official language minorities
Treaty of La Grande Paix de Montreal (1701) • Can be thought of as an early model of human rights in Canada • Build with fairness, equality, respect, representation, and fundamental freedoms in mind. All of these things are the foundation of our democracy and our Charter
How do the Treaty of GPM (1701) and the Canadian Charter (1982) compare in addressing individual and collective rights?
Why is the Canadian Charter entrenched in the Constitution? • To guarantee rights and freedoms by law • Entrenchment happened on April 17, 1982 (Constitution Act) • These rights are now protected, because changing the Constitution in very hard to do, helping to ensure our democratic society • Before the Charter in 1982, there was the Canadian Bill of Rights (1960). CBR was limited because it was 1) a bill and 2) only could be used in federal law, not provinicial
How are representatives chosen to form a local government? • Towns, cities, villages, municipal districts = municipalities • Each municipality has its own form of local government • Local elections happen about every 3 years • Electoral Process- Constituents vote for the candidate they feel best represents their views
Becoming a local government candidate • Nomination • Pay candidate fee/ fill out forms/ background check • Campaign: speeches, signs, debates, door to door • Secret ballot vote • Candidate with majority vote wins
Elected Local Leaders • Mayor – Urban Areas • Reeve – Rural Areas • Chief – First Nations/ Metis • Council members are local government members who are elected • Council members help the leader make decisions on issues, programs, bylaws, etc.
How can you (a non-voter) make a difference? • Identify the issue of concern • Research • Contact local council, MLA • Council then will discuss and review your information
What are the responsibilities of local government? • Listening to citizen’s concerns • Enforcing and passing bylaws in order to meet community needs • Providing services to the community • Collecting taxes (property)
What are the responsibilities of the citizens? • Vote • Attend council meetings • Express views on issues • May run for election