Good Sunday Morning!
Two more days – today and Monday and Election 2021 is a wrap.
I am feeling positive about the energy on the ground here in Saanich-Gulf Islands and Nanaimo Ladysmith. And hoping we will elect other Green MPs as well. Right now our best prospects are for Mike Morrice in Kitchener Centre, Nicole O’Byrne in Fredericton, and my fingers are crossed for a few more in BC. And of course, Annamie Paul in Toronto Centre!
Looking at the national predictions of what the parliament will look like after the election, I feel encouraged as well. The lust for power that led Justin Trudeau to call a snap election will be rewarded with a sharp rebuke. A majority Liberal government is still a possibility, but the odds are strongly for another minority parliament — but with fewer seats than the Liberals had last time. The chances of a Conservative minority are much lower, and a Conservative majority a vanishingly small prospect.
This does mean that every elected Green MP will have a potentially significant role in making this next minority Parliament work. Every seat will count and every vote will count.
We had a very busy day yesterday as GPC leader Annamie Paul made a whirlwind visit to Vancouver Island. The possibility of a visit had been on again/off again throughout the campaign. We were gearing up in case, and then pretty much at the last minute, her visit was confirmed. I am so very grateful to the dozens of Saanich-Gulf Islands volunteers who jumped into action to be at the Victoria airport to give Annamie a roaring Green welcome!
We then had sign waves all over, and two press conferences. The most meaningful part of the day was attending an event to call for justice for Chantel Moore. Chantel was a Nuu-Chah-Nulth woman who had recently moved to Edmundston, New Brunswick to be reunited with the young daughter her mom had been raising for her. Everything in Chantel’s life was on a positive course. On June 4th, 2020 she was shot at least four times by an Edmundston policeman on a “wellness check.” Unlike a number of highly publicized deaths of indigenous and Black Canadians in wellness checks, Chantel was not having any sort of mental health crisis. I say this with trepidation. I would never create any inference that somehow people in mental health distress bring on being killed by police. But it is relevant that the call asking for the police to check on Chantel came from a friend who knew that Chantel was afraid of someone texting her strange and threatening messages. I have been very involved in this case, as my dear friend Brenda Sayers who bravely fought the Canada-China FIPPA, challenging it in court and ultimately running in 2015 as a Green candidate, is a close friend of Chantel’s mother, Martha Martin. Through Brenda and her sister – the extraordinary Judith Sayers, President of the Nuu-Chah-Nulth Tribal Council, I have done everything I could in parliament to demand reforms of wellness checks in general and justice for Chantel in particular.
Police shootings in New Brunswick are reviewed by a Quebec police complaint group (Le Bureau d’Enquete Independent du Quebec – BEIQ). The report had been completed by January, but was not made public until June. Shockingly, the officer who killed Chantel Moore will not face any charges. I read the report and was horrified by the number of gaping holes in the story. The officer, substantially taller and larger than petite Chantel, claimed she was coming at him with a knife. There was no knife found near her body. They finally found a steak knife under some boxes on the deck leading to the outdoor staircase from her apartment. The knife had no fingerprints. The officer was at the scene without a second policeman. There was no video footage of any kind.
One of the things I hope to pursue if re-elected on Monday is justice for Chantel and the end of deadly wellness checks.
I am so grateful to all of you who read this weekly missive, often sending encouraging notes! Today, I hope to see a lot of friends on Salt Spring Island, as I will be at the Fall Fair most of the day.
I had such a great time on Gabriola Island on Monday. Brilliant activist and folk singer Bob Bossin organized a non-partisan rally for old growth but none of the invited NDPers attended. Paul Manly gave a great speech.. and this is mine. Bob made the mistake of saying that we were running ahead of time, so take all the time I wanted… hence this 27 minute rant….YouTube link http://https://we.tl/t-7L7HDCzqB1
The gathering was an amazing act of solidarity with the Fairy Creek forest protecters. My husband, John Kidder, was at Fairy Creek and wrote this song.
And lastly, we still need volunteers to help! John wil be driving voters to the polls in Nanaimo Ladysmith. My SGI volunteers are planning a zoom event party for election night, but all through the day we will be working!! See the PS and please sign up if you can. And I have put in al the links to debates that were recorded. (The Broadmead debate is where the Conservative and NDPer get all negative…ah well).
Lots of love and thanks!1
ELECTION DAY Activities. Please join me on Monday, September 20 (RSVP is appreciated)
Sign Wave: 8am to 9am – Wain Road and West Saanich Road
Meet and Greet: 9:30am to 11am – Beacon and Fifth Street, Sidney
Sign Wave: 11:30am to 12:30am – Amity Drive and Pat Bay Highway – and the pedestrian overpass
Sign Wave: 2:30pm to 3:30pm – McKenzie Avenue and Quadra Street
Sign Wave: 4pm to 5pm – Sayward Avenue and Pat Bay Highway
If you missed the debates and various zoom events, here are links that were recorded.
A Faithful Election Conversation: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KVUeyORV8EI
Salt Spring Forum: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SK5qm-vh5RI
North Saanich Residents Association: https://www.placespeak.com/en/topic/6103-north-saanich-residents-association/#/overview
Saanich Peninsula Chamber of Commerce: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CEZgRapvqPU
Capital Daily Podcast: https://www.capitaldaily.ca/podcast/your-candidates-your-questions-saanich-gulf-islands
National Animal Justice Protection: https://www.facebook.com/watch/live/?v=5931705360233432&ref=search
Greater Victoria Chamber of Commerce’s Virtual All-Candidates’ Forum:
Broadmead Residents Association: https://broadmead.ca/