OTTAWA — For the first time, the Green Party of Canada is sending a three-member caucus to the House of Commons. The recent federal election saw Green Party Leader Elizabeth May easily retain her seat of Saanich-Gulf Islands and Paul Manly was re-elected in Nanaimo-Ladysmith. Newcomer Jenica Atwin won the riding of Fredericton to become the first Green MP from the Maritimes and the first woman to be elected from that riding.
“I’m thrilled to have Paul Manly and Jenica Atwin joining me in Parliament,” said Ms. May. “Now we are the first federal party to have more women than men in its caucus! This was a divisive campaign, so our priority is to see how we can work together to get things done for Canadians. The Greens made gains on many levels in this election, including getting more than a million votes. I’m proud of what I was able to achieve as one MP. Now we are three and we’re ready to forge ahead and hold the government to its promises.”
Ms. May noted that she had had a good conversation with the Prime Minister after the election. “We agree on a range of issues,” she said. “Obviously the climate emergency is at the top of the list for the Green Party of Canada. That’s because time is running out. The targets negotiated in Paris clearly state that we must keep the global average temperature increase below 1.5 degrees C if we want to prevent self-accelerating runaway global warming. These targets are driven by science, not politics.”
Newly re-elected MP Paul Manly is excited to get to work in parliament with his caucus colleagues. “Based on what I heard from constituents during the campaign, there is a lot of work for me to do to improve health care, make life more affordable for seniors, families and students, work towards true reconciliation with Indigenous people and create good paying jobs in a renewable energy economy,” said Mr. Manly. “But most of all what I heard from constituents is that all of these things need to move forward while we tackle the climate emergency with real concrete action. I’m ready to work hard across party lines on all of these issues.”
Ms. Atwin is also eager to get to work stating: “I’m honoured by the trust the people of Fredericton have placed in me,” said Ms. Atwin. “We have spent the last several months listening, learning, and now we will carry these concerns to House of Commons.”
Ms. May observed that the climate crisis will impact every aspect of people’s lives, from security to health to immigration. “As we advocate for action on climate change, we want to make sure that we can get Alberta and Sasatchewan on side. All of these issues affect us as Canadians and collaboration is essential to move forward.
“We will also press the Prime Minister to make good on his 2015 promise for electoral reform. In the current first-past -the-post system it took 37,655 votes to elect each Liberal MP. In contrast 387,249 votes were needed to elect each Green MP. It’s time for our government to reflect all Canadians, not just a few,” concluded Ms. May
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