All Métis citizens who are or will be at least 16 years old on election day (May 29, 2021) and have been residents of Saskatchewan for at least six months prior to election day are eligible to vote. In order to vote for a Regional Representative, you must be an ordinary resident of the region in which the Regional Representative is running.
When you come to vote, you will first need to complete a voter registration form. You will need to show your valid Métis citizenship card or a letter from the Registrar indicating that you are eligible to be registered as a Métis citizen. In addition, you will need to show approved ID and your Saskatchewan Health Card. After completing the voter registration, you will be issued a ballot and then you can vote. Remember, you can only vote in the region where you live.
All voters will need to present their Métis citizenship information. In addition, you will need to present your Saskatchewan Health Card and one piece of approved ID that shows your name, current address and signature or photo (for e.g. a driver’s licence). Alternatively, you can show your Saskatchewan Health Card and another piece of approved ID which shows your name and current address. The list of approved ID is on the website.
You must vote at a polling station within the Region where you live. You can vote at your Regional Returning Officer’s (RRO) office, at an Advance poll in your region or at an Election Day poll in your region. The locations of the RRO offices, advance polls and election day polls will be posted on the Chief Electoral Officer’s website shortly after the election has been declared on April 24.
You can vote between the hours of 10am and 6pm in the office of your Regional Returning Officer beginning on Friday May 14 thru until Friday May 21, 2021(excluding Sunday). Advance voting occurs from 12 noon to 8pm on Saturday May 22. On Election Day, Saturday May 29 you can vote between the hours of 9am and 8pm. You can take advantage of any one of these voting opportunities, but, of course, you can only vote once.
To become a candidate in the election, you must be qualified to vote for the office you are seeking. This, of course, means that you can’t be disqualified from being a candidate. For example, non-Saskatchewan residents, local, provincial and federal elected officials, inmates and judges are disqualified from being candidates. Also, to run as a Regional Representative, on Nomination Day you must reside in the Region where you are contesting the election. A person cannot be a candidate for more than one elected office at the same time.
In order to become a candidate, a person must file Nomination Papers with the Chief Electoral Officer or their Regional Returning Officer (delegate). The nomination period opens 9am on April 24th and closes at 2pm on April 29th. Nomination Papers filed after the deadline cannot be accepted. The Nomination Papers must be signed by at least 5 nominators who are eligible voters and the all the signatures must be witnessed. Incomplete Nomination Papers can be corrected or modified up until but not after the deadline. There are many requirements for a candidate nomination, including a $100.00 non-refundable deposit and a criminal Record (CPIC) check. There is a detailed Candidates Guide and a Nomination Package for candidates to complete on the website. Candidates are encouraged to think about nomination soon because the required CPIC check can sometimes take weeks for the RCMP to complete. Nomination Papers should be submitted early in the process so that if there is a problem, there may be a chance to make corrections. Don’t wait until the last day.
At the close of nominations, when only one candidate is nominated for an office, that person is deemed to be elected by acclamation. Similarly, if all but one of the nominated candidates withdraw from the election, the remaining candidate is deemed to be elected by acclamation.
Candidates can authorize representatives to be present at the polling station to observe the voting process and the vote count. Candidates or their representatives are allowed to arrive at the polling station 15 minutes before voting begins and are allowed to be there at the close of the polls to witness the count. This demonstrates the transparency of the voting process and helps to maintain the integrity of the election. Candidates can appoint different representatives to be present at a polling station at different times, but either the candidate or one of his or her representatives can be present at a given time.
Campaigning can begin any time. There is no restriction in the Saskatchewan Métis Elections Act on when campaigning can begin.
The Saskatchewan Métis election is administered by an independent, non-partisan Chief Electoral Officer who is appointed by the Metis Nation Legislative Assembly. The Chief Electoral Officer for this election is Gwen LaFond. The Chief Electoral Officer does not report to the Provincial Métis Council, directors or other staff. She reports to the Legislative Assembly.
The rules for how an election is run are laid out in a piece of legislation called the Saskatchewan Métis Elections Act, 2007. This legislation was enacted by the Metis Nation Legislative Assembly. The Chief Electoral Officer is charged with running the election according to these rules.