The City of Vancouver says none of the municipal election candidates named in a court action by its chief election officer will be disqualified from running, regardless of whether a judge agrees to remove names in non-Latin characters from ballots.
Rosemary Hagiwara had applied to the provincial court to rule whether 15 candidates should be allowed to have their names printed on the Oct. 15 ballots in Chinese or Persian script, in addition to the Latin alphabet.
Respondents include the Non-Partisan Association’s mayoral candidate Fred Harding, incumbent NPA councillor Melissa De Genova and longtime Vision Vancouver school board trustee Allan Wong.
The case has been adjourned until Friday morning.
But the city says no matter what the ruling is on Hagiwara’s request to scrub the non-Latin characters, no candidates will be barred, and the drawing of names to decide their order on ballots will take place as planned at 5 p.m. Friday.
The city says ballots for the Vancouver election will comply with any court ruling.
Respondents to Hagiwara’s application included 10 candidates from the NPA, two from Vision Vancouver, and one each from OneCity Vancouver, Forward Together and COPE.
Vision had defended its candidates’ use of non-Latin characters in their usual names while accusing rivals of “cultural appropriation” by seeking to use adopted Chinese names for electoral purposes.
Harding said he had used a Chinese name for many years because half of his family on his wife’s side are Chinese.