2 What is Government?Government is a ruling body that runs the affairs of the country, province, city, town, or district.Government affects almost every aspect of your daily life including water safety, schools, money, health care, immigration etc.Without some type of government to maintain control there would be chaos within our society.
3 What type of government does Canada have? Canada’s model of government is based on the British parliamentary government.There are four different ways Canada can describe its government due to the way it is organized and functions.
4 Constitutional Monarchy Canada follows the British political tradition which recognizes the monarch (British King or Queen) as our head of state.Queen Elizabeth II is our current monarchThe Queen plays a very little role in actually running our country.The Queen’s representative in Canada is called the Governor General who plays a largely symbolic role and is considered our head of state.David Johnston is our current Governor General.Their role is giving royal assent to bills (to make them laws).Opening and closing parliament, reading the Speech from the ThroneGreeting foreign leaders and dignitariesAcknowledging Canadians with distinguished awards such as the Order of Canada.
5 Federal SystemThe powers of government are divided between a central ruling government (federal) and more local governments (provincial/municipal) so the basic needs of Canadians are met.Canada is a wide and diverse nation and therefore needs more than one level of government to make sure all the needs of Canadians are met.The powers of government were divided back in 1867 when the Fathers of Confederation were writing our Constitution.They decided to give the federal government more power to ensure there were national policies for programs such as national security, money, and the postal system.
6 Party SystemUnlike the United States Canadians do not directly elect their Prime Minister.The individuals Canadians elect belong to a political party and it is the leader of the political party in power that becomes Prime Minister or Premier.Major political parties are New Democratic Party (NDP), Liberal, Conservative, and the Bloc Quebecois.It is the party that wins the most seats in an election that ends up forming the government.
7 Representative Democracy Canada is a democracy which means the people govern our nation.Canadians elect a candidate in an election to represent them in their government (this is true for all levels).Canadians do this because there are simply too many citizens and too many decisions to be made to have it be effective.The person we elect stays in office until either they lose an election or resign.
8 Three Levels of Government Canada currently has three levels of government and they are:Federal, provincial, and municipal.Canada is a federal system and therefore each level of government looks after specific issues.People fund these services through paying taxes.Since some provinces have more money than others the federal government what is known as transfer payments. This is to ensure that all Canadians are provided with the equal services to matter where they live.
9 Federal GovernmentNational DefencePostal ServicePensionsRCMP
10 Provincial Government HighwaysHealthEducationLicences
11 Municipal Government Fire fighters Snow removal Water supply Garbage collectionPublic transitLocal police