Thursday, December 20, 2012

Charles Sousa: Why I'm running

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Got 60 seconds? Peep this video of Charles talking about why he is in the race for Ontario Liberal Party leader and why he wants to be your jobs Premier!

Friday, December 14, 2012

"Sousa sounded and looked very much like a man who would be comfortable as the next premier of the province."

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This article is a couple days old now, but I wanted to post it to show the extremely positive reception Charles received talking to local business leaders in Mississauga, while also outlining his vision to create jobs and grow the economy to protect our gains in health care and education.

Ontario's leaders must govern by addressing the long-term needs of the province, not by "just looking at the next election cycle," Mississauga South Liberal MPP Charles Sousa told the Mississauga Board of Trade this morning...

The second-term MPP pressed his home field advantage in front of an attentive audience at the Mississauga International Centre by outlining his policies to improve life in the GTA, which he said was burdened by both traffic gridlock and "political gridlock."

"It's all about growing the economy and jobs," the MPP said. "That will allow us to pay for the things that really matter — health care and education." 
Instead of headlines bemoaning the fact that traffic in the GTA is worse than it is in Los Angeles, Sousa said he wants to write a new economic story by implementing policies to create jobs and curb gridlock.
He outlined a five-point GTA plan that he claimed will put the 416 and 905 regions back on the road to prosperity.
"We can remove one complete layer of decision-making" by making Metrolinx responsible for MiWay, the TTC and all local transit systems in the GTA, he suggested.

It's finally time to build the high-speed rail connection from Windsor to Quebec City that every provincial government has talked about — but none has acted on — the Mississauga native said.
"It's time for action and we need to start with the Hamilton to Toronto and Toronto to Oshawa sections," he said.
Ontario must make significant long-term capital investments in high speed rail now because otherwise the economic benefit will be lost to the U.S., which is also looking at the prospect...

The former Labour and Immigration minister said the new policy he launched several weeks ago to attract more immigrants to Ontario is critical to meeting the province's future labour needs. "In the future 100 per cent of the net jobs will be filled by newcomers to Ontario."
Another long-term problem that has never been addressed, despite ongoing promises from every party, is the Ontario Condominium Act. Sousa promised "immediate reform” of the legislation to give owners a greater voice on condo boards and to force the licensing of condo managers.

Investing in post-secondary education in times of a down economy, such as the one we are in now, will pay huge dividends down the road as the economy recovers, argued the 54-year-old graduate of Gordon Graydon Secondary School.

He urged approval of a new university campus in neighbouring Milton, Ontario's fastest-growing municipality, as soon as possible. 
"We have the funding. We need to act,” he said.
At ease in front of the friendly MBOT audience, Sousa sounded and looked very much like a man who would be comfortable as the next premier of the province.
"We do have a strong foundation in this province  but we need to work together," he concluded. "It's not about the future of anyone's political stripe, it's about the future of the province." 

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Check out the Charles Sousa plan for Northern Ontario!

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A great week for the Charles Sousa campaign! After solid performances in the all candidates debates, and fantastic youth turnout at our pub night and the UTM Winterfest, Charles Sousa has rolled out his plan for Northern Ontario in the run up to the Northern region leadership debate tomorrow. Take a look!

Ontario Liberal leadership candidate, Charles Sousa, has the right plan to create jobs for northern families.
His vision for the North will mean accelerated job creation, better transit and more local decision making.
His plan has three points:
1. Further develop the mining sector and speed up the Ring of Fire to create jobs for northern families.
The Ring of Fire is one of the largest chromite deposits in the world, offering enormous untapped potential to create jobs for northern families and economic benefit for all of Ontario. To fast-track development in the area, Sousa will:
  • Work with investors to reach deals that create jobs and provide new net returns for Ontario in the North;
  • Invest better transportation systems to the North;
  • Expand energy transmission capacity; and
  • Engage First Nations partners so that they share and benefit from job creation and economic stimulus.
“We need to act now to create these jobs. Developing the Ring of Fire will be my top priority for the North,” said Sousa.
2. Support a reliable and sustainable ONTC to connect northern communities.
The recent decision to divest the ONTC has many communities concerned about how they’ll travel between communities. “Transit is vital to continued growth and important to northern families. That’s why I am committed to a sustainable, reliable ONTC that connects the North and supports jobs,” said Sousa.
3. Act upon local input into decision-making and build municipal partnerships.
Like other regions of the province, people in the North need to know that their input is valued and their priorities will be acted upon. “Under my leadership, local solutions will come from local input, because not all good ideas come from the Premier’s office.”
Sousa is running to be Ontario’s Jobs Premier and has already put forward several concrete ways to create jobs now. More information is available online at

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Charles Sousa wants all of Ontario working: Take a look at his GTA and rural policies

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With today being the "Day of Debates" (an all candidates luncheon at the Canadian Club and a special taping of The Agenda with Steve Paikin) here is some light reading material for you on Charles Sousa's bold new ideas to get rural Ontario and the GTA both working to create jobs and improve the quality of life for residents.

Here is the Sousa Plan to Create Jobs in Small Town and Rural Ontario

  1. Acting upon local input into decision-making and building municipal partnerships;
  1. Strongly supporting industries like auto, primary & secondary manufacturing and food processing;
  1. Providing industry with the right tools to create jobs by promoting innovation and attracting investment; and
  1. Supporting small businesses by making access to the Southwestern and Eastern Ontario Development Funds easier, simpler and permanent.

“As a party and as a government, we need to do a better job of listening to local voices,” said Sousa. “People need to know that we take their concerns seriously and are ready to act on them. That’s why listening is the starting point of my plan.”
Sousa, who is running to be Ontario’s Jobs Premier, has put the main focus of his plan for small town and rural Ontario on creating jobs.
Like all Ontario families, people in Southwestern and Eastern Ontario want the government to be focussed on creating jobs in their communities. That’s why Sousa is committed to maintaining strong support for the auto and manufacturing industries and is committed to working with business to create jobs.
His plan to improve access to the Southwestern and Eastern Ontario Development Funds for small businesses will help entrepreneurs to grow their companies and create jobs.
“Making it easier for small businesses to access the funds they need to succeed is the right thing to do,” said Sousa.
To date, the Eastern Ontario Development Fund has created $595M in private sector investment and helped create or retain 13,200 jobs. Sousa plans on building off of this success by making the funds more accessible to rural and small town businesses.
“The funds have worked well for big employers, but Main Street should be benefiting as well. That’s why I’ll make it permanent, bring clarity to the program and make it much easier to access.”

1. Make Metrolinx responsible for the TTC
Gridlock –both literally and politically – is a huge problem for Toronto. By making Metrolinx responsible for the TTC, we can start building transit now, so we’re not having the same conversations ten years from now. “We’re two years behind schedule because of political gridlock,” Sousa said.
2. Site a new university campus in Milton
Milton is the fastest growing city in Canada and we need to take action now to keep up. A new campus in Milton will help our students prepare to succeed and boost the local economy. “We have the funding.  We need to act,” Sousa said.
3. Take immediate action to reform the Condo Act
Ontario has been looking at reforming the condo act for years, and private members’ bills on the issues have previously passed second reading in the legislature.
Within 90 days of becoming Premier, Sousa would introduce legislation to reform the Condo Act. “We have had a lot of input.  We need to act,” Sousa said
4. Make immigration work better for Ontario
By increasing the number of provincial nominees, and pushing the federal government to deliver their fair share, we can take full advantage of the skills that new immigrants have, and make sure that the GTA remains a magnet for economic immigrants around the world. “We need immigration to work for Ontario,” Sousa said.
“We all know that the GTA is a world-class region that is facing significant challenges over the next decade,” said Sousa. “We need comprehensive solutions to address these challenges, and we need to start moving now.”
Sousa is running to be Ontario’s Jobs Premier and has already proposed several concrete steps we can take to create jobs now.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Follow Charles during the debate on Twitter!
Like him on Facebook to keep in touch!

Less than an hour to go before the first Ontario Liberal leadership debate! You can tune in to to hear Charles talk about his bold new ideas to create jobs like taking action on high speed rail, renewing the Ontario Liberal Party by empowering riding associations and individual MPP's, and ensuring local support for energy projects.

So like Charles on Facebook, follow him on Twitter, and watch the debate!

Friday, November 30, 2012

Charles Sousa brings out bold new ideas for Ontario Liberal renewal

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Today Charles Sousa continued to roll out bold new policies to re-engage our membership, support our unheld ridings, and empower our riding associations.

In particular, I'm a big fan of Charles committing to make it easier for youth to join the party online, helping unheld ridings keep more of their money, and supporting more free votes and private members bills.

Take a closer look at:

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Follow the Young Liberals of Canada ground team at the COP 18 UN Climate Change Conference!

I was a member of the first YLC team to go to a COP meeting, attending the COP 15 in Copenhagen. I'm very happy to see the YLC continue to be committed to sending delegates as part of the International Federation of Liberal Youth. Please check out the link to follow the YLC on the ground at COP 18.

And don't forget to like and follow the YLC International Working Group on Facebook!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

4 days left to sign up to support a jobs Premier! Here's why you should support Charles.

Only a few days remain to sign up to join the Ontario Liberal Party and have your say in picking Ontario's next Premier. If you want to see a jobs Premier with real world business experience and a proven record of winning new voters to the Liberal Party, make sure to sign up!

Here's why Charles is the best candidate to lead Ontario and create jobs:

After a rough recession, Ontario families and companies did their part

to ensure Ontario has seen job creation and economic growth. In the

last provincial election, the Ontario Liberal Party was re-elected in

large part due to a strong focus on a real plan to create jobs and

grow the economy in order to protect investments in education and

healthcare. If Ontario Liberals want to be successful in the next

election, we have to be very aware that Ontario families want real

plans backed up with real experience, not untested schemes to protect

the things that matter to them.

With his strong real world experience in the private sector, and

legislative experience promoting new policies and ideas to create

growth and protect investments, Charles Sousa is the best candidate to

convince Ontario families to renew their contract with our party and

grow the economy in bold new directions.

Charles is no career politician. He has decades of experience working

in the private sector, from owning his own financial services business

that helped small business to serving as Director of Business

Development - Commercial Financial Services, Director of Government &

Community Affairs and Senior Manager of Marketing for Royal Bank of

Canada. He’s been a member of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce, a

Director with the American Chamber of Commerce Ontario, a Member of

the Toronto Board of Trade, a Director with the International Chamber

of Commerce, Executive Director of the European Union Chamber of

Commerce in Toronto, and President of the Federation of Portuguese

Canadian Business & Professionals. Charles offers more hands-on

experience on the economy and jobs than any other candidate for

Liberal leader, and families deserve a leader with real world

experience at creating jobs and who understands what kind of ideas and


Since his arrival at Queen’s Park only 5 years ago, Charles has been a

champion of bold new ideas to grow the economy and stand up for

Ontario families. As Minister of Immigration and Minister responsible

for the Pan-Am Games, he managed one of the most complex and important

portfolios to attract new Canadians, and introduced Ontario’s first

immigration strategy to make Ontario’s newcomers an even more

important part of our provincial economy. A New Direction: Ontario’s

Immigration Strategy is crucial to help build a strong economy in our

province. The strategy focuses on bringing skilled immigrants and

their families to Ontario, in the numbers we need. Charles is standing

up to the Harper Conservatives to provide Ontario with an expanded

role in economic immigrant selection. Ontario needs to increase the

proportion of economic immigrants coming to Ontario to 70 per cent and

it needs to increase our nominations under the Provincial Nominee

Program to 5,000 from 1,000 – to help build a skilled labour force. It

sets a path so Ontario can attract the highly skilled immigrants and

investors that we need to fuel economic growth and help build stronger


As Minister of Labour, Charles led the largest overhaul of Ontario’s

occupational health and safety system in 30 years. Bill 160, The

Occupational Health and Safety Statute Law Amendment Act was passed in

May 2011 which, among other things, includes the creation of a Chief

Prevention Officer and a new prevention council.

Charles also introduced and received unanimous support for Bill 181,

the Fire Protection and Prevention Amendment Act, 2011.This

legislation addresses mandatory retirement for firefighters and

provides for the duty of fair representation.

Even before entering cabinet, Chares was effective as Parliamentary

Assistant to the Minister of Economic Development & Trade and

Parliamentary Assistant to the Minister of Government & Consumer

Services, introducing private members bill’s and motions focused on

the economy and financial services which were adopted by the

government. Charles was instrumental in passing new consumer

protection legislation to regulate payday lenders. The Payday Loans

Act, 2008 gives the government the ability to cap the total cost of

borrowing and bans predatory lending practices. Charles’ private

member’s resolution calling on the Ministry of Education to include

financial literacy education in Ontario’s elementary and secondary

school curricula passed unanimously, and the Ontario government has

since made financial literacy part of the Ontario curriculum from

grades 4-12. Charles has also served as chair of the Industry Caucus

at Queen’s Park.

From his extensive experience in owning a business and helping small

businesses grow to putting forward bold new ideas, Charles Sousa is

the candidate Liberals need to ensure the continued trust of Ontario

families on the critical issue of the economy.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

"Let’s initiate some change. It's going to help us initiate some jobs. It’s going to help us prepare for the future because this is all about making decisions today to have greater long-term benefit"

Like Charles on Facebook at:
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Sign up to support Charles at

That's Charles Sousa talking about his high speed rail plan in a great interview with The Windsor Star.

Here's what Charles has to say about creating jobs across Ontario by investing in rail and ensuring we support the auto sector:

Mississauga South MPP Charles Sousa, who threw his hat into the provincial Liberal leadership ring on the weekend, says he would push the federal government for a high-speed rail link if he becomes premier.

“Forever we’ve been talking about a high-speed rail from Windsor to Quebec City,” said Sousa, who visited The Windsor Star Wednesday on a swing through Southwestern Ontario.

“Well let’s get on it. Let’s initiate some change. That’s going to help us initiate some jobs. It’s going to help us prepare for the future because this is all about making decisions today to have greater long-term benefit.”

Sousa, 54, has served as minister of citizenship and immigration and minister of labour since his election in 2007. Prior to that he worked for more than 20 years with the Royal Bank of Canada, serving in several senior positions.

Sousa says his focus is on jobs, and he would be the “jobs premier,” staking out territory on the right of the party spectrum where former Windsor West MPP Sandra Pupatello has also positioned herself.

“Government doesn’t produce jobs, businesses and entrepreneurs do,” said Sousa.

“What we need to do as a government is provide stimulus, the programs to enable those jobs to flourish, to invite and initiate some of that. In the end all of the decisions we make should revolve around how do we make a new job, and that in turn will provide greater economic benefit to enable us to afford the things that matter.

“It’s all about being fiscally responsible and socially and environmentally conscious.”


Sousa also said he would fight to bring more auto industry jobs back to Ontario.

“It is essential,” said Sousa.

“I know the opposition called it corporate welfare when we stepped in to protect 400,000 jobs, and that’s critical, the ripple effect is huge had we not stepped it up. We’re got to be diligent in continuing to attract those investments.”

A real plan to create real jobs. If you think Ontario deserves a jobs Premier, check out Charles' website and sign up!

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Follow Charles Sousa's campaign on Facebook and Twitter!

Really excited that my local MPP Charles Sousa is about to enter the OLP leadership race this morning.   Charles has decades of experience in the private sector, knows how to win conservative voters (he's the first ever Liberal MPP re-elected in Mississauga South) but his work on issues like an Ontario immigration strategy, financial literacy for youth, and reforming workplace safety shows he understands  why we need a strong economy - to protect and build on investments in education and health care.

Please follow Charles' campaign on Twitter:
And on Facebook:

He's having a special event this morning at Oasis Convention Centre, 1036 Lakeshore Road East, Mississauga, so please join us!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Liberals need to renew our contract with the people of Ontario. Charles Sousa can get them to sign.

When Premier McGuinty announced his resignation, he said that it was time for new ideas and a renewal of the Ontario Liberal Party. After having some time to think about what kind of renewal we want to see in our party, I realized that I've had a front seat to seeing the positive impact that new energy and new ideas can have for the past 5 years.

The old Mississauga South was the epitome of old Tory Ontario. Largely mono cultural, it was one of the safest seats for the Ontario PC's in the whole province. But perhaps no community has been more positively impacted by change. Mississauga South is a vibrant, diverse, growing community, and Charles Sousa has been a strong representative for it. We've been great advances in Mississauga South with Charles as our MPP, including investments at Trillium Health Centre, new schools like Janet McDougald PS, progress on the Lakeview site, and a strong local economy helped by innovative tax reforms supported by Charles.

On a personal level, Charles also represented the new Ontario that families have built across the province. A successful businessman and the son of immigrants who escaped political repression, Charles represents the opportunity that this province holds. With his strong background in business and finance, but also having a strong understanding of the need to have strong and caring social services that families can rely on, Charles knows that we have to take a balanced approach to continue our strong action to grow our economy economy and renew our public service.

We've got big challenges to face as a party and a province, but I know Charles can win. I was canvassing with him in 2007 right from the get go when things looked pretty tough - we'd just lost the first Liberal MPP our riding had ever known, and we had just months before the election. But Charles knew how important it was that we get to every door and talk about the importance of protecting our public schools. As I watched the campaign grow and grow, from the back of his van to the campaign office on Lakeshore, I saw how he brought people from every community in Mississauga South together to support Liberal ideas, and on election day, Charles proved the pundits, who said he wouldn't chance wrong, winning a strong victory. In 2011, he worked hard again to renew his contract with the people of Mississauga South, becoming the first ever Liberal MPP to be re-elected in our riding.

He has the experience as Minister of Labour and Minister of Citizenship and Immigration. He has the knowledge about the economy to create jobs for families. He understands families coming to Ontario deserve strong, stable public services like health care and education. And he's a proven winner. If Charles Sousa decides to run for Ontario Liberal leader, he'll have my support and I urge you to consider him as well.


Monday, October 15, 2012

On behalf of my family - Thank you, Dalton McGuinty

Wow. Like many Liberals today in Ontario, I was shocked by the news of Premier Dalton McGuinty announcing his resignation today. I've been incredibly lucky to get a chance to intern for the McGuinty Liberals at Queen's Park for two summers, and McGuinty's commitment to education, healthcare, and building a green economy motivated me to volunteer in the 2007/2011 elections, by-elections in St. Paul's, Toronto Centre, Ottawa West-Nepean and Kitchener-Waterloo. For Ontario Young Liberals like myself, McGuinty has a particularly important place in our hearts, pretty much serving as the only OLP Leader for our political awareness, and for his championing of many issues important to youth, like the 30% tuition rebate, extending the grace period for OSAP loans if you work for a non-profit (an OYL policy originally) and perhaps more than any contemporary leader in Canada, understanding that Ontario's economy is changing and putting the building blocks in place for a green knowledge economy.

Ultimately though, when I think about the McGuinty legacy though, I am brought back to something I posted last year the day before the election, my personal story of how the actions and policies of the McGuinty government have helped my family stay a family:

"My story of why I am a Liberal: I remember during the 90's my parents getting the Harris taxpayer rebate, and my mom telling me what she was going to do with it. "We're going to donate this to the church for charity, because as rough as things are for us sometimes, some family out there relying on social services for help just had those services cut to pay for this."

Fast-forward to 2006. My mother is diagnosed with breast cancer, but thanks to the investments in things like breast cancer screening under the McGuinty government, they catch it early. At the same time, I'm able to start going to university because the government believes in supporting students, and a mother is able to see her son succeed. That's moving forward. Together."

From my family and families like ours across Ontario, Thank you, Mr. Premier.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Hudak PC's support for defunding abortion runs much deeper than a press conference

On International Day of the Girl, Tim Hudak can try to put shiny gloss on the PC Party, he can pretend his party is focused on the economy, but this is what the heart of the Hudak PC Party is, with his frontbench MPP's sponsoring a news conference supporting the defunding of abortion in Ontario. Any claims about the PC focus on jobs and the economy can't hide that the MPP's sponsoring this press conference are both of Hudak's Labour critics, and his deputy whip. You'll also remember Hudak's deputy labour critic Rick Nicholls from this blog, talking about how he  "would like to remind my non-Christian-believing friends need to respect and remember that this is Canadian land and that you and/or your ancestors decided to live and conduct your form of worship here...Just don't try to mix it all in with our founding principles and say it is because of diversity"

And let's not forget Hudak's own thoughts on the matter of abortion:

"Hudak admitted last year that he had signed an anti-abortion petition"

Forget last year, here's Hudak on the record responding directly to the Campaign Life Coalition:

Even taking a look at Hudak's "Job Creation Task Force", we see the PC's anti-choice agenda, demonstrated by Monte McNaughton, Hudak's critic for Economic Development and innovation, agreeing with the statement "I support measures to stop funding abortions with taxpayers money in Ontario", according to this survey from Citizen Impact, a socially conservative pressure group, and Skilled Trades and Apprenticeship Reform Critic Garfield Dunlop saying he "opposed abortion" as well as being a long-time opponent of gay marriage, calling it a "sin" and saying it would "destroy the fabric of our society."

While the Dalton McGuinty Liberals are focused on reducing the deficit and creating jobs, Tim Hudak, his "Job task force" and the PC caucus have other priorities.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Be a Young Liberal delegate to the next UN Climate Change Convention! Deadline to apply is tomorrow!

Click this link for more info

I had the opportunity to go to the COP-15 Conference in Copenhagen back in 2009, and it was a remarkable experience for me. Young Liberals have developed a proud history now of sending delegates as part of the International Federation of Liberal Youth, and I recommend any Young Liberal with an interest in the environment or international relations to consider being a delegate. Follow the link above to find out more info on how to apply, the deadline is tomorrow!

Friday, September 21, 2012

Like the Young Liberals of Canada International Working Group on Facebook!!/YLC.JLC.International

I've just started to get involved with the YLC IWG as a committee member at large, and if you're interested in finding out more information, please like our Facebook page! We want to get a lot of great initiatives going this year, so show your support!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Horwath skips vote on Southwestern Ontario Economic Development Fund and runs Rob Ford supporter in Vaughan - what does her NDP stand for?

Kitchener-Waterloo NDP candidate Catherine Fife is running on a slogan of "Leadership that delievers", but a look at the actions of NDP leader Andrea Horwath and her fellow NDP candidate in Vaughan raises questions about what exactly she wants to deliver.

Yesterday, the Ontario Liberals gave new support to the Southwestern Ontario Economic Development Fund, to help create jobs for families across Southwestern Ontario, including Kitchener-Waterloo. And what did Andrea Horwath do? She walked out, not standing up for job creation in Kitchener-Waterloo.

Now, we already know that Hudak candidate Tracey Weiler has no qualms about flip-floping on supporting her leader, going from saying she ""supports the leader’s position on halting the rollout of full-day kindergarten in the province" to running away from Hudak:

But with Andrea Horwath running a Rob Ford supporter in Vaughan as Fife's candidate mate, will we see Catherine Fife start to back away from Horwath? Here's Horwath's NDP values on display in Vaughan:

With Tracey Weiler and Andrea Horwath's values all over the map, Eric Davis is the best choice for strong local leadership in Kitchener-Waterloo.

Monday, August 27, 2012

"Students putting students first" - Ontario Student Trustees' Association calls Putting Students First Act "a fair deal", but will the NDP and Catherine Fife listen?

The NDP and Catherine Fife have already come out against the Putting Students First Act, but will they listen to the students of Ontario themselves or their big union money interests?

Here's what the Ontario Student Trustees' Association says about the Liberal government moving to make sure students are in class from day one of the school year in Kitchener-Waterloo and across Ontario

Hirad Zafari, OSTA-AECO President and Toronto DSB Student Trustee, called upon "provincial leaders and teachers' unions, specifically those who have not agreed to the OECTA framework, to ensure full-service education for all students this coming year."

Provincial leaders are calling on teachers' unions to take a two-year wage freeze as part of province-wide austerity in the face of a large deficit and growing Ontario public debt - "a fair deal, given the nine years of labour peace and the progress made in our schools" said Kevin Michael, Catholic Board Council President and Student Trustee at Dufferin-Peel Catholic DSB.

Tim Hudak showed he can't be trusted to protect stability in schools when he flip-floped and "condemned" full-day kindergarten, and Tracey Weiler showed she is no Elizabeth Witmer when it comes to standing up for Kitchener-Waterloo families by weakly saying she "supported [Hudak's] position". If Catherine Fife and the NDP put big union money (Fife hasn't issued any news releases about education, but she has about getting a public sector union endorsement) before what students want, what does that say about Fife's and the NDP's real priorities on education?

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Why is Eric Davis running in Kitchener-Waterloo?

Here's a great piece by Kitchener-Waterloo Liberal candidate Eric Davis answering the most basic question that anyone running for public office has to answer: Why are you running?

Eric's two big reasons are simple but moving: Public service and family.

Eric has a long track-record of local leadership in Kitchener-Waterloo, and he'll be a fighter to build a better future for Kitchener-Waterloo families.

I was raised to believe that each of us has a responsibility to contribute to the vibrancy and success of our community. Everyone contributes in their own way. Until now, my way has been through volunteering with a number of local organizations, most notably as the vice chair of the local United Way, and recently as chair of the local branch of the Canadian Mental Health Association.

However, I have also long believed that public service is an important responsibility and an honour. I look to former representatives such as Herb Epp, Andrew Telegdi and Elizabeth Witmer, and I see how our community has benefited from leaders who have been strong local representatives of Kitchener-Waterloo first and foremost.

Witmer served our community for 22 years as MPP. Despite our many philosophical differences, I have a great respect for her dedication to Kitchener-Waterloo. She served with honour and distinction, and I hope to follow her path of strong local representation through hard work and a commitment to our community.

Eric's other big reason for running hits close to home for me: To protect the public services that helped his family, and to build a better future for all families like his in Kitchener-Waterloo.

In particular, Eric drawing inspiration from his wife surviving breast cancer thanks in large part to investments in health care and breast cancer detection made by the McGuinty Liberal government (just as my mother is a breast cancer survivor) shows he has a personal stake in protecting the gains Ontario has made in health care.

At the age of 24, my wife Cynthia was diagnosed with breast cancer. For 18 months she underwent chemotherapy, radiation treatments, surgeries and countless doctor visits.
Today, we are thankful to say that she is a cancer survivor due, in large part, to Ontario’s health care system.

Though we will have to find efficiencies in our health care system to ensure its long-term sustainability, we must always ensure that it remains free, public and universal so that everyone experiencing a health challenge like my wife can avoid the worry of affordability and concentrate on recovery.

Our daughter Isabella is now two years old. As I have watched her grow, learning to speak and developing a love of books, I’ve gained an appreciation for the importance of early learning.
That’s why I fully support the Liberal government’s investments in education, including the introduction of full-day kindergarten and the strong commitment to smaller class sizes.

While the Hudak Conservatives and Tracey Weiler flip-flop on important issues like full-day kindergarten, and the NDP presents no real plan to balance the budget and ensure stability in schools, Eric Davis will be a strong fighter for the future of Kitchener-Waterloo families, motivated by the very best of concerns: The dignity of public service and protecting the health care and public education systems that have helped teach and heal generations of Ontario families.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

With education on the line, will Tim Hudak flip-flop on a wage freeze like he did on full day kindergarten?

We know Tim Hudak's position on full day kindergarten for Ontario families has gone from this:

To this

"Tim Hudak...condemned the program, which is to be fully rolled out by 2014"

with Hudak's double flip-flop backed by Kitchener-Waterloo Progressive Conservative candidate Tracey Weiler:

"Weiler said that she “supports the leader’s position” on halting the rollout of full-day kindergarten in the province."

With the Ontario Liberals introducing the Putting Students First Act, here is Tim Hudak saying he would support a wage freeze:

"We'll support a wage freeze legislation"

With his flip-flops on full day kindergarten, will Hudak stick to his word or not? And if he does flip-flop, with Tracey Weiler continue to "support the leader's position", or will she stand up for Kitchener-Waterloo families and put students first?

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

The family tree of Quebec political parties

Taking a break from talking about Tracey Weiler and Tim Hudak putting full day kindergarten at risk for Kitchener-Waterloo families by talking about some other kind of families: the family trees of Quebec political parties.

Those who know me know I'm a big Quebecophile, so I thought I would make a rough chart showing the evolution and relationship of the different major political parties in Quebec right now. Take a look at see how the Parti Liberal, Parti Quebecois, CAQ, Quebec solidare, and Parti Vert have come into being, and how many of them have family roots with each other.

A solid line indicates a direct merger, a dotted line represents that a part was a breakaway or formed by dissidents of another party. I've used logos where appropriate, and click to enlarge the images. Enjoy!

Tracey Weiler is no Elizabeth Witmer when it comes to local leadership

I wrote yesterday about Tim Hudak doing a double flip-flop on full-day kindergarten, and now let's take a look at the Tim Hudak candidate in Kitchener-Waterloo, Tracey Weiler and her position on full day kindergarten. While previous Progressive Conservative MPP Elizabeth Witmer stood up for Kitchener--Waterloo families, Tracey Weiler is more interested in taking orders from Hudak's Queen's Park backroom boys in Toronto and not listening to the thousands of families in Kitchener-Waterloo depending on full-day kindergarten.

On the important issue of FDK and local leadership, Weiler standing behind Hudak, who "condemned the program" is a sharp and disappointing turn away from previous Progressive Conservative MPP, Elizabeth Witmer, who in her many years of service to the community, was also a strong advocate for full day kindergarten, and showed local leadership by standing up to Hudak over full day kindergarten:

"For two years, Progressive Conservative Leader Tim Hudak had railed against the ambitious new program being rolled out by Ontario’s Liberal government.

So how did Hudak come to see the light?...

Elizabeth Witmer, the party’s tough-minded education critic, told Hudak he was on the wrong side of the issue... Witmer, who wears her social conscience on her sleeve, acknowledged privately to her education contacts that Tory focus groups showed overwhelming support [for FDK]."

Witmer's local leadership got Hudak to commit to full-day kindergarten in the PC platform, as shown below from page 21 of Changebook:

But when Hudak took his third different position and did a double flip-flop back to opposing full-day kindergarten, and putting at risk the education of thousands of Kitchener-Waterloo children, how did Tracey Weiler stand up for families?

"Weiler said that she “supports the leader’s position” on halting the rollout of full-day kindergarten in the province"

If Elizabeth Witmer didn't believe in Tim Hudak's scheming cuts to education, why should Kitchener-Waterloo families? Tracey Weiler is showing how out of touch she is with Kitchener-Waterloo families by not continuing to support full day kindergarten.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Tim Hudak flip-flop on full day kindergarten shows Ontario PC's can't be trusted with education file

It's a little late for the Olympics, but Tim Hudak's triple flip-flop on Full Day Kindergarten would win a gold medal in showing how out of touch he is with Ontario families.

Hudak threw his own flip-flopper Tony Genco under the bus today, after Genco said this in regards to full-day kindergarten:

"Mr. Genco not only said he supported the kindergarten program, but added there was no use opposing it because "the ship had sailed" on the issue."

Makes sense for Mr. Genco to say this, after all, this was in the PC platform last year, right on page 21:

So even Tim Hudak thought it would be a mistake to distrupt FDK. Until now:

"Vaughan PC candidate Tony Genco was forced to backtrack on his support of the Ontario Liberals' all-day kindergarten program today after leader Tim Hudak...condemned the program, which is to be fully rolled out by 2014" 

 This comes after Hudak already flip-flopped on FDK once already.   "For two years, Progressive Conservative Leader Tim Hudak had railed against the ambitious new program being rolled out by Ontario’s Liberal government."   With education a looming issue for Ontario families, Tim Hudak's flip-flop on a flip-flop shows he can't be trusted with the education file.

Friday, July 6, 2012

First post in a long time, some policy discussion!

I haven't posted in forever, so I decided to break out of the doldrums of summer by posting a policy I'm considering submitting for OYL Summer Fling on reforming Canadian Content regulations. Here it is:

Whereas - Canadian music deserves to be supported and funded for both economic and cultural reasons,

Whereas- Canadians are accessing more and more content online, bypassing the traditional models of Canadian Content regulation and promotion, [1]

Whereas- Many Canadian bands and performers have recently had more success from establishing popularity outside of Canada, or from online promotion,

Whereas- Canadians access Canadian Content on websites like Youtube at as high a rate as non-Canadian content, without any regulatory regime in place [2]

Whereas- Modern technology and the nature of cultural consumption by Canadian consumers has increasingly made an anachronism of Canadian content regulations for commercial music radio stations,

Be it resolved that - A Liberal government commits to updating the mandate of Industry Canada, the Ministry of Canadian Heritage and the CRTC to better reflect the nature of Canadian musical production and promotion in the 21st century by phasing out the requirements for commercial radio music stations to play 35% CanCon.

Be it further resolved that - A Liberal government commits to directly supporting Canadian artists and not a regulatory framework by committing to increasing the funding for programs like FACTOR (the Foundation Assisting Canadian Talent on Recordings) and Starmaker which fund new Canadian artists.

Be it further resolved that - In recognition of the need for a funding model for giving greater direct support for programs that support Canadian artists, the federal government ensure that ISP's pay a fraction of their Canadian profits directly to these programs.

Be it further resolved: Nickelback sucks.
For citation 1: Statistics Canada’s 2009 Canadian Internet Use Survey: 80% of adult Canadians used the internet for personal use
For citation 2: "Who needs Cancon?", Winnipeg Free Press, Jan 14, 2012: "YouTube reports that Canadian videos are being sought-out and viewed at a rate roughly on par with those originating in the U.S...Annually, in fact, [Youtube] calculate[s] that the site features more original Canadian content than has ever been broadcast during prime time on CBC (English and French) and CTV combined."

Friday, April 20, 2012

Young Liberals take strong stand against Mulcair's pro-Harper, pro-prohibition stance on marijuana

Today Young Liberals across the country are taking part in a campaign taking on NDP leader Tom Mulcair for his pro-Harper position on marijuana prohibition. I'm proud to count myself as part of the Ottawa team, putting up posters, handing out information and buttons, and reaching out to the majority of Canadians who believe that continuing the war on marijuana would be a mistake.

The current state of marijuana laws in Canada are hitting taxpayers hard, and Stephen Harper's tough on wallets crime schemes will only make the situation worse. Hardworking Canadian policemen and policewomen should be working on stopping serious crimes, not be forced to arrest Canadians for possession of small amounts of marijuana for personal use. It is particularly disappointing to see the NDP and Tom Mulcair stand with Stephen Harper on the issue of marijuana, as those punished under the current laws are disproportionately youth, members of racialized communities,and those with limited income.

Liberals are taking a strong stand for common-sense drug crime policies, as legalization will hurt violent gangs by depriving them a significant source of income, and help policemen and policewomen keep more dangerous drugs off the street. I am happy to see the Young Liberals take the lead on this issue and push the senior party in the right direction, making clear, strong arguments for evidence-based policies.

Liberals want to treat Canadians like adults and take on Harper on his costly and ineffective prohibitionist policies. The NDP and Tom Mulcair want to capitulate and let Harper set the terms of discussion on drug laws and crime. A big part of rebuilding the Liberal Party is staking out bold new policies and advancing them to Canadians, and I'm glad I can play a part in that process today.

Monday, April 2, 2012

Conservative attacks on eco groups should give LPC an opportunity to reach out

A lot has been written about the attacks on environmental groups in the recent Conservative budget, most of it negative, such as this Globe and Mail editorial:

While the Conservatives are wasting your tax dollars to go after legitimate environmental groups (full disclosure: I am currently working part time for an environmental organization, although as the group is not a charity I don't believe the new guidelines would impact us) and gut Elections Canada, I believe the federal Liberal Party should use this as an opportunity to expand ties with environmental groups across the country, and help ensure the importance of the environment in the Liberal platform.

I think in retrospect a failure of the Green Shift in 2008 was that a lot of environmental groups couldn't be brought onside to promote it and the Liberal Party as the best choice for environmentally minded voters. One only needs to contrast how vocally environmental groups rallied around the Ontario Liberals in the most recent provincial election to see the difference this kind of support can make. Both the NDP and Conservatives seem to be wanting the next election to be framed as an economy/environment battle (as Paul Wells has written extensively about) for different reasons, and the Liberals risk being shut out of this conversation (which would be terrible for any hopes of escaping third-party status) unless we can present a pragmatic middle ground approach, and talk about building the green economy and creating jobs here in Canada in a way neither the NDP or Conservatives can do. Having the support of the environmental movement behind a green jobs approach would be absolutely vital, and I think the Liberals need to move quickly and firm up these ties, while at the same time keep active talks open with the natural resources sector, to make balanced environmental regulations and create jobs, without the vilification of either environmental activity or the hard-working Canadians who work in the natural resources sector.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Renewal and activity in the commissions a great sign for Liberal rebuilding

Blogging has been light of late, although I've been keeping very active in Liberal events, obviously. In particular, in the last couple of weeks I've been to events involving the Young Liberals, the Aboriginal Peoples' Commission, and the Women's Commission here in Ottawa, and they all speak to the fact that our commissions are playing a crucial role in the renewal of the Liberal Party and the Liberal brand.

I attended a great Young Liberal organized event in Ottawa, the Ottawa Centre/Ottawa-Vanier Young Liberal Bonanza. It was great to hear from Mauril Belanger and Yasir Naqvi how important Young Liberals are to the Liberal Party, particularly Yasir Naqvi talking about how the single biggest commitment the Ontario Liberal Party made in the last election was the 30% off tuition grant, and how this idea came straight from Young Liberals. Another remarkable thing was to see so many new faces I hadn't met before, showing that youth are interested in playing a proactive role in politics and are attracted to the Liberal message.

International Womens' Day saw two events, a breakfast organized by the Women's Commission, and the launch event of Beyond the Numbers, a great idea put forward by the YLC and VP Maddie Webb in particular to increase the role of young women in the YLC and the Liberal Party as a whole. The breakfast was very well attended, with MP's and guest speakers from around the country coming in, such as new Commission president Mary Pyenburg. Bob Rae spoke passionately about the need for the Liberal Party to not only go after the Conservatives backwards approach on women's issues, but to always look at the Liberal Party itself and see what more we can do to advance women's rights and make our party even better. The Beyond the Numbers event had dozens of Young Liberals get together, including many from out of town, to network, talk about young women in the party, and be inspired by a touching speech from Kirsty Duncan about her journey into politics.

Last but not least, I helped support our Aboriginal Peoples' Commission by going to the "10-for-10" fundraiser, part of a campaign to create an endowment fund for aboriginal candidates ($10,000 for 10 candidates, as a starting goal) in the next election. Sen. Lillian Dyck, Bob Rae, Carolyn Bennett, and Jeff Copenace all talked about the role of the Liberal Party as promoting understanding between all the peoples of Canada, educating non-aboriginals about aboriginal history, and the important task of recruiting strong aboriginal candidates to run in both rural and urban ridings in the next election.

All in all, a series of great events that leave me inspired and optimistic about the role our party commissions can play in the party renewal process. Now to paint Toronto-Danforth red for Grant Gordon!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Harper wants $80 million of your tax dollars to creep your emails

That's what it'll cost you to give Stephen Harper the privlidge to look through your email's and browsing history.

It's going to cost at least $80 million to implement the government's lawful access bill to force internet and telecommunications service providers to collect customer information in case police need it for an investigation, CBC News has learned.

C-30, a bill to update Canadian law when it comes to crimes committed online, will cost $20 million a year for the first four years and $6.7 million a year after that, Public Safety Canada told the CBC's Hannah Thibedeau on Wednesday.

Harper wants your $80 million to spy on you at the same time he's slashed over $200 million and over 1000 jobs from Environment Canada. Sign the Liberal petition to keep Harper out of your inbox, because the government does not belong in the hard drives of law abiding Canadians like you:

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Meet Richard Ciano, new Ontario PC President

A big issue Tim Hudak had during the provincial election was his unwillingness to put Ontario first, as he never discussed in a real way he would show independence from the federal Conservatives and the Ford braintrust at Toronto City Hall. We all remember Harper declaring to a partisan Tory crowd how happy he was to seeing a Tory hat trick, Jim Flaherty jumping into the provincial election, etc. As Premier McGuinty put it to Tim Hudak in the leaders debate, Ontario families couldn't count on Hudak standing up to Harper on important issues like health care and equalization reform.

Well, by electing Richard Ciano as PC President, the PC's have demonstrated they still do want that hat trick, and want Ontario to be run out of downtown Toronto and 24 Sussex. Here's just a few of Ciano's greatest hits:

"Richard Ciano is another Harper insider"

Wed Jan 25 2006
Georgina Advocate

Mr. Ciano says…"I love Rob [Ford], I love Doug [Ford]"

The Globe and Mail
Sat Jul 31 2010

Conservatives' Cotler poll 'reprehensible'…the calls had come from a firm called Campaign Research. Among the firm's senior members are…Richard Ciano.

Postmedia News Regional News - East
Tue Dec 13 2011

Monday, January 30, 2012

Reflections on convention and moving forward

I've had some computer difficulties the last couple weeks, combined with work and school keeping me busy, so only now do I have a chance to reflect on the LPC convention.

First off, congratulations to Mike Crawley and his team for a great winning campaign for President. I had a lot of good friends working very hard on his campaign, and I think that hands down he had the best campaign. It was an honour to work with some incredible Liberals on Alexandra Mendes campaign, and I look forward to seeing all candidates who ran for exec board positions to stay active in the party and contribute to the rebuilding process.

On the policy front, the big issues were obviously marijuana and the monarchy. I'm glad the marijuana policy passed in particular, and I sincerely hope the party makes it a part of the platform, and more generally, takes on the Harper crime agenda in a more cost-based way. For too long Liberals have either taken a less solid position on opposing the Conservative crime bills than I think many grassroots Liberals would have liked, or have attempted to use the "dumb on crime" messaging. I think using a more cost-based (and federalism) based line of attack on the Tory crime legislation will yield more positive results. The problem with saying the Conservatives are "dumb on crime" is that it sends a message that if you, personally as a voter believe in the Conservative attitude on crime, you must be dumb. It comes off as smug and elitist, and the Conservatives can and have spun this as "You want to lock up drug dealers and gangsters? Hug-a-thug Liberals think you're dumb." Saying that the Conservatives are "tough on wallets" when it comes to crime I think is a better line to use, and would help re frame the issue as one of pocketbook issues and government spending.

Constitutionally, I was pleased to see the creation of the supporter class, but disappointed at the outcome of them being allowed to vote in leadership races but not local nomination races. I was hoping for the opposite outcome, as I believe the leader as the embodiment of a ideology must be accountable first to the members of the party supporting that ideology. Allowing supporters to vote locally would help us engage in much more community politics, building up from the grassroots on the riding level, helping the people whose names will actually be on the ballot to reach out to the local population, engage with them, and get involved with the thousands of Liberal voters who aren't party members in a given riding. I am also against the oft discussed idea of banning appointments, but I was hoping that the amendment to limit the use of them would have passed.

On the whole, it was of course a very positive convention, and it was great to meet and see Liberals from all over the country. We can rebuild the party, and this convention was a great start.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Join the Alexandra Mendes call tonight and learn more about her plan to put members first!

Mendes has got momentum!

With this great profile in iPolitics: talking about putting members first, and her solid plan to engage and empower Young Liberals: Alexandra Mendes would like to invite you to her conference call tonight to have your say and hear how she wants to put members first!

Looking forward to seeing you all there!

Monday, January 9, 2012

Empowering and engaging Young Liberals - Alexandra Mendes' plan for youth

Alexandra Mendes has a proven track record of Young Liberal engagement, including having her successful 2008 election campaign being managed by a Young Liberal! She knows the strength and abilities Young Liberals can show if given responsibility and empowerment. Read here about Mendes' plan for youth!

"Young people in politics, as in all other facets of civil society, offer us a daring, optimistic and creative energy that we must embrace if we want to truly reflect our communities.

No party, in fact, no organization can be truly vibrant and relevant without fully engaging these sources of power and renewal."

Dear Fellow Liberals,

As we approach the Biennial Convention, it is important to talk about the role of Young Liberals within the party, and the important role youth will play in renewing our party. It is sometimes said that “Youth are the leaders of tomorrow” – but I can speak from experience that youth are the leaders of today! I have a proven track record of successfully engaging and empowering Young Liberals. I know how important a role Young Liberals can play when they are given the respect and responsibility they deserve. An 18-year-old Young Liberal managed my campaign in 2008 and the efforts of Young Liberals played a crucial part in my victory in a very close race.

I have kept very good memories of my experience. I learned a lot and I won’t ever forget that you gave me my first opportunity.
Farah Chagnon, Campaign Manager, 2008 Election

At this biennial, youth will form a large percentage of the delegates, which is a great sign that young Canadians are engaged in the party and will participate wholeheartedly in the rebuilding process going forward. This is why empowering, listening to Young Liberal voices and ensuring they are heard is a cornerstone of my campaign.

Youth are worthy of distinction, not only because of the sheer size of their delegation, but because the general Liberal membership recognizes the overwhelming and urgent need to prioritize youth in order to rebuild and renew our party.

As President of the Liberal Party of Canada, my role will be to ensure that the Young Liberals of Canada Executive will have all the tools and resources required to be effective in their respective jobs – including communications tools, recruitment materials, a program for sharing best practices, fundraising support and encouragement for innovation.

I will work with the Caucus and party office to have regular town-hall meetings with youth and young liberals in different parts of the country, on post-secondary campuses and community centres, with an emphasis on un-held ridings and rural areas. I believe that our National Executive, MPs, Senators, and candidates of record should be on the front lines of engaging and listening to youth.

One of the keys to ensuring that Young Liberals have all the tools and resources they need entails thinking about the sustainability of the YLC, both financially and organisationally. Therefore, as President, part of my role would be to ensure that the LPC Executive Board does all it can to support a financially viable and efficient Young Liberals of Canada Commission. I believe that supporting the Young Liberals involves more than promises of increased budgets, rather it involves encouragement and support for self-sufficiency through YLC fundraising initiatives.
One best practice model that I have found is the Ontario Young Liberals FLY program that allows them to bring in additional sources of funding through a monthly donation system, independent of the LPC or OLP. This is certainly something that I as President, would like the National Executive to consider for YLC.

I will ensure that the YLC President, as a full-fledged member of the LPC National Executive, has an equal voice and opportunity to defend and support his ideas. This means that the President’s voice is heard, and that no other members of the executive seek to silence or ignore it.

The position of YLC National Director ought to be preserved to make sure the YLC has a voice and ally at the party’s organisational level.

I believe we need to form stronger relationships among our PTAs and the riding level associations, including those Young Liberals at the riding level. We could build on the model of the Council of Presidents and establish a Council of Young Liberal Leaders – with Young Liberal Riding Presidents or youth riding association representatives – to give them a direct voice and line to National Executive.

Youth need to feel engaged in all parts of our party, tapping into the energy, experience, and excitement they bring to the Liberal cause.

This means building on and celebrating the successes of YLC projects. As one example, the party ought to recognize the successful fundraising campaign for the 2011 YLC Climate Change Convention delegates. As President I would work with rest of National Executive and party to create a mechanism in which the party routinely taps into the energy and ideas of the Young Liberals across Canada such as event ideas, collaborations with other organisations, and support for Young Liberals to attend conferences. However, engaging youth, not only requires listening and support, but also seeking opportunities where the party can assist financially and organisationally with fundraising, while highlighting and encouraging these initiatives moving forward.

My entire platform is based on changing the culture of the Liberal Party to make it a member-driven and member-responsive party. We must harness the talent in this party to drive this party forward. When a Liberal—any Liberal—comes forward offering us innovative ideas and talent, we must harness this and help them to help develop our party. We need to harness the talent of young Liberals by allowing them to contribute to the areas that they are passionate about and in areas where they have talent.

It is my firm belief that young Liberals are best served by not being relegated to “Young Liberals Only” areas, but bringing them into all areas of this party. If a Young Liberal is talented in policy, messaging, etc. he or she should sit side-by-side, shoulder-to-shoulder with other Liberals at the table and contribute and have his or her contribution respected. At that table there will also be Liberals with many years of experience, wisdom and successes and this allows knowledge to be shared, and a whole new generation to be prepared to lead this party into the future.

I am feeling very optimist for the future of the Liberal Party of Canada.


* * * *

«Les jeunes dans la vie politique, comme dans toutes les autres facettes de la société civile, nous offrent une audace, une énergie optimiste et créative que nous devons adopter si nous voulons véritablement refléter nos communautés.

Aucun parti, aucune organisation ne peut être vraiment dynamique et pertinent, sans engager pleinement ces sources de pouvoir et de renouvellement
. »

Chers collègues libéraux,

Alors que Congrès biennal approche à grand pas, il est important de parler du rôle des jeunes libéraux au sein du parti et du rôle crucial que les jeunes joueront dans le renouveau. On dit parfois que «les jeunes sont les leaders de demain » - mais je peux parler par expérience que les jeunes sont les leaders d'aujourd'hui! Dans mon expérience politique et communautaire, j’ai déjà démontré ma capacité à engager et à responsabiliser les jeunes libéraux. Je comprends très bien l'importance du rôle que les jeunes libéraux saisissent lorsqu’ils sont traités avec le respect et la responsabilité qu'ils méritent. Ma campagne en 2008 était gérée par une jeune libérale de 18 ans, et les efforts plusieurs autres jeunes libéraux ont contribué significativement à ma victoire dans une course très serrée.

« « Je garde de très bons souvenirs de mon expérience. J’ai appris beaucoup et n’oublierait pas que tu m’as donné ma première chance. ».
Farah Chagnon, directrice de campagne, 2008

Lors de cette biennale, les jeunes composent un pourcentage important des délégués, ce qui est un signe très encourageant que les jeunes Canadiens sont engagés dans le parti et participeront sans réserve au processus de reconstruction qui nous attend. C'est pourquoi la responsabilisation, l'écoute de jeunes voix libérales et l’assurance qu'ils sont entendus est une pierre angulaire de ma campagne.

Les jeunes méritent notre considération, non seulement en raison de la taille de leur délégation, mais parce que l'ensemble des Libéraux reconnaît la nécessité impérieuse et urgente de donner la priorité aux jeunes afin de reconstruire et renouveler notre Parti.

En tant que présidente du Parti libéral du Canada, mon rôle sera d'assurer que l’exécutif des Jeunes libéraux du Canada aura tous les outils et les ressources nécessaires pour être efficaces dans leurs postes respectifs - y compris les outils de communication, le matériel de recrutement, le partage de meilleures pratiques, le soutien au financement et l'encouragement à l'innovation.

Je veillerai à ce que le président des JLC, en tant que membre à part entière de l'exécutif national du PLC ait une voix égale et la possibilité de défendre et de soutenir ses idées autant que les autres membres. Cela signifie que la voix du président est entendue, et qu'aucun des autres membres de l’exécutif ne cherche à le taire ou à l'ignorer.

Les jeunes doivent se sentir engagés dans tous les domaines de gestion de notre parti, puisant dans l'énergie, l'expérience, et l'excitation qu'ils apportent à la cause libérale.

Ma plateforme est entièrement basée sur le changement de la culture du Parti libéral ; d'en faire une organisation dirigée et réflective de ses membres. Nous devons exploiter tous les talents de nos membres pour conduire ce parti vers le futur. Quand un libéral, quel que soit son groupe d’âge, se présente en nous offrant des idées novatrices et osées, nous lui devons la considération de ses idées et toute l’aide appropriée pour les concrétiser.

Nous avons besoin d’utiliser le talent des jeunes libéraux en leur permettant de contribuer aux domaines pour lesquels ils se passionnent et qui les interpellent. Je ne coirs vraiment pas que les jeunes libéraux doivent être relégués à la simple catégorie de «Jeunes libéraux», mais que dans toutes les sphères de notre Parti on puisse retrouver leur contribution et leur talent.

Si un jeune libéral est talentueux en matière de politique ou de marketing, par exemple, il ou elle devra participer à part entière à la discussion et ses contributions devront y être reconnues et validées. A cette table il y aura aussi des libéraux ayant de nombreuses années d'expérience, de la sagesse et d’histoires de succès ; cela permettra des connaissances qui se partagent et une toute nouvelle génération préparée à diriger ce parti dans l'avenir.

Je suis très optimiste pour le futur du Parti libéral du Canada !