Green Party Candidate Calls for Inclusiveness in Newmarket Chamber Debate
September 24, 2015
(NEWMARKET) – There’s a chill on democracy in Newmarket-Aurora during this federal election and Green Party Candidate, Vanessa Long, is calling on the Board of the Newmarket Chamber to reverse its position on debate participation.
“I find myself in an interesting position. All across Canada, Green Candidates have had to fight to participate in debates, including our Leader, Elizabeth May. Here in Newmarket-Aurora I am honoured to have been included in the Chamber debate and now to have the privilege and duty to stand up and speak out for another Candidate,” said Ms. Long.
“I appreciate the position the Chamber finds themselves in, and that they are attempting to maximize value for their members, but that doesn’t make it okay to exclude smaller Parties and Independents. Democracy is about ensuring all voices are heard, not schoolyard politics where some get to play and some don’t.”
The Board of the Newmarket Chamber approved a policy in early 2015 that restricts who is able to participate in federal and provincial debates. Candidates must belong to a Party that has one sitting MP or more than 5% of the popular vote. Under this new policy, all but one of the declared Candidates is eligible to participate in the October 6th debate.
“I urge members of the Newmarket Chamber, and the other Candidates, to reach out to the Board members and ask for inclusiveness. We have a choice here: to stand up for democracy or to support anti-democratic policies that are one more symptom of a failing Canadian democracy. It’s time for Canadians to take our country back and demand Canadian values of fairness and equality be respected.”
For additional information or to arrange an interview, contact:
Candidate for Newmarket-Aurora
Green Party of Canada
cel: (905) 751-6158