Opinion

BC Fed Prez: Mulcair Best Choice for Working People

'We have an opportunity to finally elect a truly progressive government,' says labour leader.

By Irene Lanzinger 15 Oct 2015 | TheTyee.ca

Irene Lanzinger is the president of the BC Federation of Labour. This op-ed expresses her own views and not the editorial position of The Tyee.

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BC Federation of Labour president Irene Lanzinger: 'A strategic vote in this election is a vote for Tom Mulcair and the NDP.'

This federal election campaign is not just one of the longest in Canadian history, it's also one of the most important.

After 10 years of lost jobs, cuts to vital public services, and the gutting of environmental regulations, it's time for change in Ottawa.

That's why I am voting for Tom Mulcair and the NDP.

Public health care, retirement security, fair wages, a strong economy and environmental responsibility are just a few of the critical issues at stake.

Only Tom Mulcair and the NDP have put forward a clear vision for lasting change -- change that puts the future of working people and their families at the heart of their plan for a better Canada.

A plan that asks Canada's most profitable corporations to pay a little more, closes tax loopholes and invests those resources in helping the most vulnerable.

A plan that will boost the economy by helping families balance home and work with the creation of a $15-a-day national childcare plan. 

A plan that will raise the federal minimum wage to $15-an-hour.

Only Tom Mulcair and the NDP have taken a clear stand for the basic rights of Canadians by opposing Bill C-51. 

And only Tom Mulcair and the NDP are standing up to Stephen Harper's Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal -- a deal that will cost thousands of good-paying jobs, drive down wages, and increase the cost of prescription drugs.

Strategic and principled

The stakes in this election could not be higher for working people and their families.

Under Harper, job security and retirement security are things our children may never experience.

Four more years of the Harper Conservatives means four more years of the politics of division and fear that has already done too much to damage our country.

Like many, I don't want to see Stephen Harper win another term. But the answer is not voting for the Liberal Party.

The Liberals, under Mr. Trudeau, say they will bring change to Ottawa. But quite frankly we've heard that same promise from them before.   

Despite a lot of talk, the Liberals broke their promise to expand childcare. They broke their promise to protect health care and education. And they broke their promise to clean up corruption in Ottawa. 

And the Liberals have made it clear that they aren't willing to stand up for Canadians when it really matters. They sided with the Conservatives on Bill C-51 and are silent on the TPP.

With that record, it's hard to believe the Liberals will be any different now. Trusting Justin Trudeau is a dangerous gamble.

I am not willing to take that gamble.

What is clear to me is that the strategic vote in this election is a vote for Tom Mulcair and the NDP. 

Best for BC

British Columbia is a key battleground in this election. In this province, it is the NDP that can defeat Stephen Harper and the Conservatives.

On Oct. 19, we have an opportunity to finally elect a truly progressive government in Canada. A government that shares the values of working people and the labour movement.

We have a chance to vote for a government that will stand up for Canadians.

I hope you'll join me and help make history by electing the first NDP government in Ottawa. We have never been so close to building the Canada of our dreams.  [Tyee]

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