Musqueam Chief and Council Election
Keeping Musqueam safe
Musqueam Council and Administration want to continue to ensure all Musqueam members’ and their families are safe during the COVID-19 pandemic. Recently, confirmed cases are rising in BC. There are active cases still at Squamish Nation and other close First Nation relatives.
We all know to maintain physical distancing at all times and avoid crowds. These are two key ways we can protect ourselves and others that are difficult to maintain during our typical band election process.
Musqueam election during COVID-19
Musqueam Chief and Council’s current terms of office expire on November 30, 2020. Council and Administration are determining the best way for our community to hold an election during COVID-19.
To mitigate spreading COVID-19 and provide a solution to potential governance gap issues, Indigenous Services Canada created new regulations that enable band leadership to extend their terms in office for 6-months if an election is deemed unsafe to hold.
In normal circumstances, Musqueam holds an in-person community meeting prior to the election to receive nominations for chief and councillors. We send mail-in ballots to off-reserve members, and host an in-person voting day on reserve where any member can visit the gym to vote.
The process for nominations and voting will look different this election.
If an election is held in November, nominations and voting will be mostly online, with limited opportunity for COVID-safe in-person voting.
If Musqueam Council decides to extend terms for 6-month, the extended terms will run until May 31, 2020. Once deemed safe, an election can be called at any time before May 31. Nominations and voting will still be mostly online, with limited in-person COVID-safe voting.
Community survey about postponing band election
Musqueam Chief and Council will decide on September 22 if terms in office will be extended.
We want to know what you think is in the best interest of our community. If members feel safe holding an election in November, we will move ahead as planned. If members are worried about community safety, we will postpone until we feel ready.
SEPTEMBER 19, 2020 UPDATE
Message from I/CAO Devin Sharma: