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Federal election date should not be changed: chief electoral officer

WATCH: Canada’s chief electoral officer says voting day this fall should not be moved. As Erica Vella reports, members of the Jewish community say they are disappointed by the decision.

Editor’s note: A previous version of this story incorrectly stated that Cabinet needs to make a decision on voting day. It does not. The story has been corrected. Global News regrets the error.

Canada’s chief electoral officer says voting day this fall should not be moved.

Election day can be no later than Oct. 21 under federal law, which this year falls on the Jewish holiday known as Shemini Atzeret, meaning Orthodox Jews are not permitted to work, vote or campaign.

Elections Canada had been lobbied to change the date, but decided against it this close to an election, prompting a Federal Court challenge to the decision.

READ MORE: Canada’s chief electoral officer to review election date, conflict with Jewish holiday

Last week, the court ordered chief electoral officer Stephane Perrault to take a second look at the decision and balance the infringement on the charter rights of affected voters against the objectives of the election law.

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Perrault’s detailed decision says it is not in the public interest to move voting day.

LISTEN BELOW: Abe Silverman, Alberta manager of public affairs for B’nai Brith Canada, joins the 630 CHED Afternoon News

Perrault wrote that Elections Canada will continue to do outreach to the Jewish community in affected ridings to find other ways to help them vote.

Orthodox Jews are primarily in 36 of 338 federal ridings, most of them in urban areas.