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WWW.HORNEPAYNE.COM was able to contact LCBO management and ask some questions around data used to make a decision about our LCBO. We thought perhaps there would be information about sales, perhaps a decline, etc. However, we were told that the main reason for the closure was not related to sales. We will try to find out more information in the near future. In the meantime, please continue to press the government.
Hornepayne.com contacted the union that represents workers at the LCBO to ask them a bit about the pending closure of our outlet. Below are the questions asked and comments.
Question: Was the OPSEU given any notice of the impending closure of the LCBO in Hornepayne?
Answer: OPSEU was notified by the LCBO after the decision was made.
We were only notified the day they announced it to the staff at the store which was Sept 13th
Question: Did you receive any explanation from the LCBO as to why the decision is being made.
Answer: We received no explanation other than the fact that the LCBO can close the Hornepayne LCBO because it is “repatriating” (bringing the business back into LCBO) an agency store somewhere else.
Question: How many people does it affect.
Answer: It affects 2 casual employees, perhaps 3. One member is going off on Maternity leave the beginning of November
Question: Beside the obvious job losses, what are OPSEU’s concerns about the closure of the LCBO store and sales of alcohol in an Agency store.
Answer: With a real LCBO, the community gets good jobs and can count on highly trained professionals making sure that alcohol doesn’t get into the hands of kids and people who appear intoxicated. With the real LCBO ,all the profits go back to the people of Ontario in the form of investments in our hospitals, schools, highways and other public services. With these fake LCBO “convenience outlets” 10 percent of the profit goes to the private owner.
Question: Are you able to illuminate the rules around which an agency store must operate, in terms of security, safety, training, etc?
Answer: Agency stores are private retailers. And the evidence is is clear. According. To the Centre for addiction and mental health (CAMH), the research shows that privatization results in an increase in stores per capita, longer hours of sale, and fewer ID checks that prevent sales to minors and intoxicated people.The research shows these factors are strongly linked with increased alcohol consumption and harms, including increased hospitalization, mortality rates and suicide rates. CAMH has recommended against private relatability stores in its Alcohol Policy Framework released in September.
Question: Are you aware of other LCBO outlets that are slated for closure, that are at least 100km from the closest LCBO store?
Answer: No, but OPSEU only receives notification after
the LCBO has made its decision. The LCBO needs to stop treating northern and rural areas as second-class communities. Over the past few years, OPSEU has fought hard to force the LCBO to back off an misguided plans to close stores and lay off staff in a number of small communities across the province.And the LCBO can count on us to fight hard against this closure in Hornepayne.
Question: How would I advise residents direct their concerns in regards to this issue? To whom would it be best to concentrate our calls, emails and other communications in order to help reverse this decision?
Answer: OPSEU is fighting the expansion of private alcohol sales across the province . If you go to keepitpublic.ca, a template message will automatically email to your MPP, Premier Doug Ford, and Finance Minister Rod Phillips. (The LCBO is a crown corporation under the ministry of finance)Alternatively, you can draft your own
Max, thanks for taking the time to answer some questions as the candidate for the Green Party. I know our readers in Hornepayne, as well as the region will be interested in hearing from you as well as the Green party.
I’ve lived on Manitoulin Island my whole life. I grew up in Little Current and spent much of my childhood outside fishing, camping, and exploring the natural world of our riding. This gave me a deep appreciation for the natural beauty of our region and the benefits that having so much wilderness provides us. I’m an avid fisherman, paddler, and I spend any free time I have outside. I try and go on at least one camping trip per season, either canoeing, hiking, or snowshoeing. Recently we snowshoed part of the Trans Canada Trail in the Lacloche Mountains. I’ve worked for the YMCA of Northeastern Ontario for 5 years in Camping Services as a wilderness guide and educator.
My long love of the outdoors is what fueled my entrance into politics. I quickly realized that protecting wilderness and the environment is inherently political. Working to make governments recognize the need to be sustainable when making decisions required me to become political as a teenager. I started working in highschool to raise awareness of environmental issues and organizing in my community, which then brought me to study politics in University. I’m currently finishing a degree in Political Studies at Queen’s University in Kingston.
I got involved with the Green’s because they have been unafraid to tell the truth about climate change and the environment. Of all the parties they have been the most consistent in saying we have to make the switch to renewable energy and sustainable industry within the next three decades.
The Green Party has risen in popularity and its profile in federal politics has risen in recent months. Can you give our readers an overview of the Green Party platform, including how your party proposes to pay for its initiatives?
The Green Platform is based around the 17 Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations. Our goal is to give Canadians a vision of what our country can look like in 10 years if we begin a transition to a green economy now. We want to see Canada become a leader in innovation and an example to the rest of the world of what is possible when leaders act with courage, rather than to secure short-term political gain.
We have committed to cutting Canada’s emissions by 60% below our 2005 emission levels by 2030. This is the goal we must adhere to if we want to halt the global temperature from rising more than 1.5 degrees celsius.
We can achieve this by ending fossil-fuel subsidies and reinvesting that money into renewable energy production, retrofitting buildings to be more energy efficient nationwide, and greening our methods of transportation. These initiatives will create more jobs across the country than the oil and gas industry ever supported, building retrofits alone can create 4 million jobs nationwide.
Our platform also commits to new social spending, and public services in Canada. We will implement a universal pharmacare program, to provide all Canadians with prescription drug coverage. Low-income dental will be covered under Medicare insurance. We will also restore the federal/provincial Health Accord so that health transfers are based on the demographics and real healthcare needs of each province and territory. We will also work to implement a Guaranteed Livable Income for Canadians to ensure that people are able to live decent lives regardless of their circumstances.
We plan to fund these projects by introducing new measures to make taxation fairer in Canada. Right now many corporations and the super wealthy pay much less in effective taxes than the average Canadian. We want to make sure that everyone is paying their fair share. That is why the Greens will close tax loopholes that benefit the wealthy, and give the CRA the resources to go after loopholes and tax havens. We will also raise the corporate tax rate to 21%, in line with the corporate rate in the US and require e-commerce giants like Google and Amazon to register and pay taxes in Canada for the income they generate from Canadians.
How would you describe the green party in terms of the political spectrum of left and right?
The Green Party has always favoured sensible policy over trying to adhere to ideological purity on the left to right spectrum. As of right now the Green Party is the most progressive party in Canada in terms of social programs, taxation, the environment, and democratic reform.
Fiscal sustainability is still important to us and we plan to balance the budget by 2025, however we prioritise people over balanced budgets and would not commit to service cuts to see the budget balanced.
Can you briefly outline the main principles of the Green party?
respect for diversity.
Moving to more local issues, the Northern Ontario economy tends to be very rooted in the industrial complex, whether it be mining, forestry or transportation, all of which can be challenged in terms of environmental records, and carbon footprints. How do you see yourself advocating for the north, while pursuing environmental policies that may hurt traditional employment in Northern Ontario?
The industries of the North are not at odds with a Green economy, in fact our plan would shift much of Natural Resources Canada’s funding and focus away from oil and gas towards forestry and mining.
We are the only party committed to restoring the National Forest Strategy which was dropped under the Harper government. The NFS would help the forestry industry work with provinces and communities to log more sustainably and protect the integrity of our forests. We also believe that more value-added manufacturing should take place in the North. This way we can create jobs and get more money for our products, rather than selling raw logs to other countries and buying the finished product at a much greater price.
The mining industry is vital to greening the energy grid. We cannot hope to build renewable energy, electric vehicles, or east-west-north grid expansions without base metal such as copper, tin, and aluminium. That is why we plan to invest $40 million into a Sudbury based mining innovation cluster to improve the efficiency and profits of the mining sector.
Now to a very local issue. Several years ago, the municipality entered into an agreement with the NWMO to enter the Learn More Process about building a deep geological repository in our area, to house the spent nuclear fuel. Can you explain party’s stance on Canada’s plans to build a DGR to house our spent fuel, as well as your party’s alternative to the storage, if you are not in favour of a DGR?
The effectiveness of deep geological repositories and their risks are still being assessed. Any long term management of nuclear waste should be examined and assessed by unbiased third parties before receiving approval by the government. We know that nuclear waste is extremely dangerous and the contamination it can cause could be catastrophic to people and the environment. More funding should be allocated to research on ways in which we can safely store and manage nuclear waste.
On the issue of nuclear power, I think it is fairly safe to say that most Ontarioans, if they could would replace nuclear power with wind power tomorrow, or something with a similar C02 production per kw\hr, however, Ontario’s current wind power has the ability to generate 695 megawatts of electricity, which is intermittent, with 2577 turbines. Nuclear generators generate over 10 000 megawatts of consistent power. Now, putting aside the issues of spent fuel for a moment, how would the Green Party fund the replacement of nuclear with alternative energy, as it seems to a lay person, that the cost is huge. I have read that the average cost to put a wind turbine into operation is about 3 million, and to generate, 10 000 mw, we need a lot more of them. How does the Green party intend to fund this change, change to other renewables that have similar carbon footprints to nuclear?
Renewable energy has come a long way in the last two decades, and our ability to generate power without producing emissions continues to get better. In the short-term nuclear power serves as a stepping stone but in long-term nuclear power, and the waste that comes with it, is not feasible.
Paying for the transition to renewable energy begins with making buildings in Canada more energy efficient. Right now buildings in Canada are sucking up energy at an incredible rate. That is why the Green Party will undertake a massive building retrofit programs across the country to make our homes and places of work as energy efficient as possible. This will be paid for in part by new revenue from taxation but also by redirecting the billions of dollars currently subsidising fossil fuel production.
****Story update as of Tuesday, September 24th! I have heard from both the Liberal candidate and the Green Party candidate, and I hope to have their interviews posted in the near future!!!******
WWW.HORNEPAYNE.COM has reached out to the candidates for our riding, for each of the major parties, to conduct an interview each of them, to allow them to outline, for voters in Hornepayne, as well as our larger area, their political goals, and to ooutline why they fell they deserve your vote. As of the evening of Tuesday, September 24th, I have received a response from two of them, and once I am able to, I will conduct an interview and post the results here. Please check back, check out our two facebook connections (a group and a page), as well as our instagram and twitter account. You can also leave us a message, email us at email@example.com or leave a comment on Facebook! As soon as we have material from our local candidates, we will post it here.
As referenced in an earlier post, the Federal Election is upon us. As I post this, a bombshell has hit the campaign, as a photo of Justin Trudeau in brownface has emerged. It is from 2001. It will be interesting to watch the various sides try to use the photo and defend it. In short, the Liberals will say that not only was it long ago, but actions speak louder than words and Justin Trudeau’s government has a record of supporting minorities, from our First Nations people, to immigration, etc. As a matter of fact, many of the criticisms against Trudeau and the Liberals, are around their support of immigrants and refugees. The Conservatives and NDP will try to use the photo to cut into the Liberals and their apparent slim lead in the poles. It will be fascinating to watch.
However, the intent of the post is to provide a quick overview of the political spectrum, as it resides in Canada, so here we go. This year’s election, will pit the first time Conservative Leader, Andrew Scheer, with his conservative agenda, against the incumbent Liberals, led by Justin Trudeau, with the NDP, fighting to space among the progressive vote, with the recently surging Green party, nipping to some degree at their heels. Some of the key issues that will likely emerge are the debate between the economy and the environment, specifically the Carbon Tax, instituted by the Liberal government and levied in provinces that do not have a carbon pricing system of their own. Other issues besides the economy and the environment will undoubtedly emerge, however the two differing views will likely dominate the election. Add to that, the SNC-Lavalin affair as well as a debate about leaders and we may have a very nasty election campaign, but one that is important to our future.
So, as we are leading up to the election, and we will all be inundated with political ads, newstories and a social media blitz, www.hornepayne.comhas decided to do a short review of the political spectrum and where our major parties fall within it.
The political spectrum is referred to in terms of “left” and “right”, with it being a spectrum, and different people falling in various spots. Political parties, are agents of power acquisition, and do not necessarily stick to the same spot on the spectrum, but depending on the leaders, the members of the party and the political climate, move along and land in various spots on the spectrum. In general, however, our three major political parties can be placed on a particular spot on the spectrum, however how close they are to the centre, or away, will change over time and go back and forth.
So, what is the spectrum? You need to imagine a number line, with 0 being the middle, and numbers going to the left and to the right. Before I continue, let me clearly state I am not saying that the left is “negative” and the right “positive”, I am just trying to provide a visual image. On the right side of the spectrum, we have the Conservative party. In very broad terms, parties to the “right of centre”, generally tend to promote smaller government, less services and of course, less taxes. Parties of the right tend to be more conservative in values, often made up of people who have succeeded financially in our current system and are often more aligned with traditional religious groups, especially Christian ones. Historically, Conservatism in Canada has been the bastion of white, middle to upper class people, especially males. Some famous Canadian Conservatives include our first Prime Minister, Sir John A. MacDonald, John Diefenbaker, Brian Mulroney and of course, Stephen Harper. Each of these men were prime ministers of Canada and leaders of the Conservative Party (at times with slightly different names) that was different, but within a range. For example, while Conservatives tend to prefer less spending and therefore less taxes, it was Brian Mulroney who introduced the GST, a first ever national, goods and services tax.
On the other side of the spectrum, on the left, is traditionally, the NDP, or New Democratic Party. Historically it came out of movements in the west, specifically by Tommy Douglas of Saskatchewan, and was a party that stood up for blue collar workers, farmers and those less fortunate. It advocates for a larger role in society for government, including health care, transportation, education, social welfare, etc, etc. It has traditionally been made up of union members and leaders, activists and those in society who feel more marginalized. A good example of a current policy, is the NDP just announced, if they form a government, they will provide dental care to all households under a certain income. This is a typical left of centre policy. Generally, the NDP tends to focus more on government control of the economy, they focus on the environment and social responsibility. Of course, by nature, their policies generally call for more taxation, especially of the wealthy and corporations, to pay for more broad services for everyone. For example, the NDP support a nationwide daycare strategy as well as a pharmacy program for all Canadians.
In many countries, the political spectrum is often taken up by two main parties, one left and one right. For example, in the US, the Republican party is the right wing party and the Democratic party the left. Politics in the US tend to be much more right wing than Canadian, so even leaders in the Democratic party while on the left in US politics, would still be considered right of centre in the Canadian context. In the UK, it is a similar situation, with the Labour party holding the left position and the Conservative party the right.
However in Canada, we have had three main parties since the early 20th century. Recently we have had new parties emerge, in particular on the federal level, the Green party, a left of centre, environment based party, and the Peoples’ Party of Canada, a libertarian, right of centre party led by a former Conservative cabinet minister.
Of the three more historic parties, the Liberals are considered a centrist party, neither left nor right, but depending on the leader, the times and the circumstances, they are often a bit right of centre or a bit left of centre, or a combination of them. An old adage in Canadian politics, which is a bit of a tongue in cheek comment on politics, is that the Liberals campaign like the NDP (promise more services, a fairer society, to tax rich people more, etc), but when elected, govern like the Conservatives! While there is not space here to delve further into it, generally the NDP stay to the left of centre, the liberals sit in the middle and move a bit to either side, and the Conservatives are generally right of centre, however there are politicians in each of the Liberals and Conservatives, who often lean a bit towards one way or the other. Historically, Joe Clark was considered a “Red Tory”, meaning he was conservative, but leaned more to the left. Former Prime Ministers John Turner and Paul Martin, were considered to be Blue Liberals, or Blue Grits!
So, on we go. We have a party to the right, the Conservatives (as well as the Peoples’ Party of Canada, even further right), a centrist party, The Liberals, a left wing party, the NDP, as well as the Greens, which are also left of centre, and also starting to threaten the NDP!
So, as the vote approaches, educate yourself! Ask the candidates questions, read their literature and go to the websites. For quick reference, each political party website is listed below, but these are national sites! Whatever you do, please exercise your right and vote, regardless of who you vote for. I will be trying to contact local candidates and have them provide me with information about themselves and their platforms and I will publish them here!
Canadian Political Party Websites
Green Party: www.greenparty.ca
So, here we go! Canadians go to the polls on Monday, October 21st. www.hornepayne.com will be publishing, in the near future, a bit of an election primer. Not necessarily a description of political platforms (in part because they are not well developed, despite the election call), but more of a rundown of the basics of our political spectrum. What is right wing and left wing? What is a centrist? What is a blue Liberal and Red Tory? We will do a quick review of the political spectrum and where the main parties basically fall on it. We will post links to the main party platforms and leave it up to the reader to investigate the parties and hopefully to question the local candidates when they come around. I will also endeavour to contact our local candidates for statements about their goals and why you should vote for them! In the meantime, we hope all electors engage in the process and vote! It should prove to an interesting election, with many ups and downs for all parties!
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