Quebec to implement online voting trial for 2025 municipal elections

Quebec to implement online voting trial for 2025 municipal elections
(Photo : Elections Québec Facebook)

By Daniel Kirchin

Local Journalism Initiative

Elections Quebec has unveiled its selection of 21 cities set to participate in Quebec’s inaugural internet voting trial during the upcoming 2025 municipal elections.

The initiative will bring online voting options to specific districts or boroughs within the cities of Magog, Drummondville, and Granby, with the determination of participation to be decided by each municipality throughout the year.

The announcement stems from Élections Québec’s call for interest in taking part in the online voting pilot project, initiated in May 2023. A plan was then created for targeting municipalities with populations exceeding 20,000 residents. The focus on more populous areas aims to address the issue of unopposed elections and to ensure active voter engagement.

In an interview with Elections Québec, spokesperson Julie St-Arnaud-Drolet explained the many aspects of the pilot project to take place.

Although internet voting has not been implemented or experimented with in either provincial or federal elections in Quebec, its possible advantages have attracted the attention of various governments and legislatures. Drolet stated that “over the last decade, Ontario, British Columbia, New Brunswick, and the federal government have all undertaken studies on internet voting”.

This is alongside countries in Europe such as France, Switzerland, Norway and Estonia that all have online elections now, she added.

According to a study conducted by Elections Quebec on online voting initiatives around the world, municipal administrations adopting internet voting are primarily doing so to enhance accessibility and convenience for voters. In some instances, there is also a hope that it will lead to increased voter turnout.

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