Perhaps the most dynamic, and crucial theme that unfolded during the election campaign is how to balance the country’s economic interests with the need to shift our thinking about climate change.
The Green Party has pushed a more sophisticated idea—that Canada can have its cake and eat it, too: A cleaner future and massive economic returns from creating the technology and jobs of the future.
A couple of the Liberal names in Parliament representing Mississauga will be different. But like the national headlines, the city’s 2021 election result is the same as 2019, raising more questions about why Canadians were forced to the polls for a campaign that did not offer voters enough information to change their mind at a time when many are still anxious about the future.
Human trafficking has been a taboo subject this election campaign.
While this type of crime has continued in the shadows of the COVID-19 pandemic, none of Canada’s big political parties have a comprehensive plan to tackle forced labour or sex trafficking if elected. Why?
Maxime Bernier, Leader of the People’s Party of Canada, visited Port Credit Thursday to meet supporters. The former Conservative MP arrived at his event more than three hours late, jogged in, then greeted supporters while pushing a range of debunked theories, including a questionable understanding of vaccines and climate change.
NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh has only visited Brampton twice this election, a significant drop from his rookie national campaign in 2019. At a rally in Brampton East Wednesday he didn’t make any new promises to residents, but told The Pointer another local hospital would only be built if he wins Monday’s election.
Mississauga Centre Green Party candidate Craig Laferrière is running for parliament with a formidable resume. He has a PhD in chemistry, alongside a career in vaccine research and development and a range of non-profit experience on top of an impressive history of volunteer work.
He hopes to take that experience, and a passion for the environment, to Parliament Hill with a win on Monday.
Peter Fonseca was extremely vocal throughout his last two years in office for Mississauga East—Cooksville.
He consistently brought up the riding and fought for issues his constituents pushed to the top of the local agenda. Routinely debating in the House made Fonseca stand out from many of his colleagues in Parliament.
She may have limited resources and time, but Sarah Walji is determined to give Mississauga—Lakeshore constituents tired of the Conservatives and Liberals another viable option.
As an emergency psychiatric nurse doing shift work, she somehow manages to prioritize the requests of residents looking for someone to advocate on healthcare, education, housing and climate action.
Kaukab Usman is running to change the fortunes of many newcomers to Mississauga–Erin Mills. The Pakistani-Canadian believes incompatibility between immigration rules and employment standards is holding her community back.
If elected, she has promised to reform Canada’s immigration and settlement system to unleash the potential of well-educated immigrants, some of whom work in low-skilled jobs that do not take advantage of their education and experience.
Justin Trudeau’s Liberal Party has put forward a broad platform for the ongoing election campaign, vowing to continue and expand childcare plans already signed with seven provinces and one territory, while addressing the ongoing affordable housing crisis.
But like other commitments in the plan, the full assistance for some struggling families might not arrive until after the next term of government.
The Green Party places the environment and climate crisis at the heart of its plans for Canada. With a small percentage of support from Canadians, it’s unlikely Leader Annamie Paul will become Prime Minister.
However, with the Party’s plans for the climate crisis, and expanded support for municipalities, it deserves a second look from many Canadians, while serving as a bellwether for other parties.
Iqra Khalid may not have always mentioned Mississauga—Erin Mills by name in Parliament, but she focused on the members of her community and issues they face every day. A strong advocate on women’s rights and other human rights issues, Khalid rose many times during the past session of Parliament, continuing to build on the work she began after first being elected in 2015. She chaired one of the highest profile committees, the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights, which did the heavy lifting on many of the issues closest to her heart.
With days until the polls close, candidates are making their last pitches to voters. Messages are printed on pamphlets, plastered over social media and repeated on thousands of doorsteps.
The Pointer visited one Mississauga—Streetsville neighbourhood and spoke to residents about how the end of a short campaign at the local level, far from the cameras and charter planes for the party leaders, is playing out.
The career environmentalist has worked in the public and private sector to push sustainable practices, and has spent much of his life over the past decade in the political realm, running for office to educate the public and keep green values in the discourse around election time.
His strong stance against the GTA West Highway reflects the platform of his party.
Enhancements to the Hurontario LRT, a BRT route along Dundas Street, and climate change mitigation efforts are at the top of the list for the City of Mississauga, and it’s the same for Ewan DeSilva, the Green Party candidate for Mississauga—Erin Mills.
The rookie candidate promises to push for local projects not just to help the environment but to enhance the quality of life for Mississauga’s residents.
The Green party has once again put forward an ambitious platform to deal with the largest issue people around the world are facing, collectively.
In Mississauga—Lakeshore, huge developments across the riding’s waterfront are taking shape, and Robertson vows to make sure the rapid growth is handled with a focus on nature, sustainability and human-scale planning. Her party also has a platform focussed on the specific needs of municipalities.
There was plenty of agreement when the Liberal, Conservative and Green candidates met virtually for a debate on the topic of climate change.
During a respectful, if uneventful, Zoom event, federal election hopefuls offered their solutions for the worsening climate crisis.
Mississauga—Lakeshore candidate Michael Ras caused a stir Friday at a local Board of Trade event, when he suggested he supports the construction of the controversial 413 Highway being pushed by the Doug Ford PC government.
He later clarified his position, telling The Pointer there needs to be proper consultation before a decision on the future of the proposed transportation corridor is made.
Conservative Leader Erin O’Toole was in Mississauga on Friday as the federal election enters its final phase with him in a neck-and-neck race alongside Justin Trudeau.
He told assembled reporters he was working to rebrand his party for suburban voters in the GTA’s 905, with no wins in Brampton or Mississauga over the past two elections. He appealed to Mississauga voters to move on after six years of Liberal government but avoided directly committing to transit priorities in the city.
Hidden in the shadow of Toronto, Mississauga does not always get the attention it deserves, says Mississauga—Lakeshore candidate Michael Ras.
After the pandemic upended many lives financially and strained the mental health of thousands across the city, he says now is the time for those in Ottawa to address the city’s specific needs.
After being reelected in 2019, Sven Spengemann promised to bring needed transit and affordable housing funds to his riding of Mississauga—Lakeshore. Over two years, he only spoke of public transportation once and never said the words, “affordable housing” in Parliament.
Instead, he focused on climate change, the COVID-19 pandemic and bringing attention to the contributions of members of his community who had passed on.
While preparing to teach a course on law and the environment, Mark Davidson was shocked by Canada’s poor track record on environmental protection.
Running for the Greens in Mississauga—Malton, Davidson acknowledges he might not know everything about being an MP, but as someone closely connected to people in his community, he vows to solve the problems they face, while tackling the looming threat of climate change.
The broad issue of climate change comes up daily during this short campaign contest. What national leaders don’t offer are concrete actions they would take on specific projects, if elected prime minister.
Currently, Highway 413 sits in limbo as an assessment ordered by the Liberal government hangs in the balance until a new government makes a decision on how the review will proceed and whether or not the ruling party commits to either salvaging the massive highway project or abandoning it for good. Each candidate’s stance could impact how Peel residents vote on September 20.
The New Democrats have a young leader who is clearly targeting young voters. His tactics on social media, PR-style promotions—Punjabi poutine anyone?—and slate of youthful candidates appeal to many millennial voters.
The NDP platform includes plenty of broad themes, many related to pressing issues in Peel, but Jagmeet Singh continues to confound those looking for details such as how affordable housing will be paid for and what he intends to do, specifically, to improve healthcare for all Canadians.
The goal of young Liberal candidate Iqwinder Gaheer is to meet and speak with as many people as possible over the days leading up to the election.
He hopes to address affordable housing, climate change and child care in Ottawa, if elected. Coming from a working-class family Gaheer shared with The Pointer why after two years practicing law he switched paths to pursue a career in public life.
Data that has been labelled “deeply troubling” by an expert hired by Peel Regional Police has many community members demanding immediate action by police leadership to address anti-Black racism within the force.
At the same time, police board members fumbled a request to form an anti-Black racism committee, despite needing to rebuild trust with Black communities now more than ever.
The incumbent for Mississauga Centre is seeking a third consecutive term in Ottawa, after losing his seat in 2008 following his brief rookie-run as an MP.
Over the past two years, Alghabra has seen his profile rise dramatically with his appointment to cabinet. He has spoken and voted as a loyal caucus member, saying he prefers to elevate local concerns within the party structure instead of airing conflicts in public.
NDP candidate Teneshia Samuel has a background working as an equity consultant and in recruitment for the banking sector.
They promise to make mental health, particularly for marginalized communities, a pillar of their policies if elected. Disaggregated data, they say, could be key to ensuring recovery policies are working for those that need them most.
In 14 months, Peel District School Board has had three directors of education, as the back-and-forth on policies, directives and getting important equity work done has stalled. Finding the right person for such a fundamental transformation in one of the most diverse regions in the world, will make or break the troubled board. In June, Rashmi Swarup was given the responsibility. The Pointer talks with her about the new role.
The Conservative Party of Canada platform doesn’t point to the specific projects desperately needed in Brampton and Mississauga, but with a plan to help municipalities with infrastructure needs, as well as tackling gun and gang crime, and help for those suffering with mental health and addiction issues, the party is making promises that could benefit the region directly.
The derogatory euphemism was used during Brown’s speech at the Black Education Fund’s inaugural scholarship event.
Organizers of the event held off on posting the video immediately, giving Brown a chance to apologize. But their calls have been met with silence and excuses no one is buying.
Canadians will be heading to the polls once again on September 20, and the turnout could be skewed by ongoing crises at home and abroad.
With many upset about having to go to the ballot box in the first place, could this mean one of the lowest voter turnout levels in history, and how could that impact the parties?
Mississauga played the role of convenient backdrop for Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau on Friday as he stopped at a local business to promote a pledged vaccination fund for provincial governments.
The Liberal campaign used the opportunity to increase the profile of Rechie Valdez, the newly nominated local Liberal candidate, who faces a tough fight to win election. Trudeau played to a national audience, as usual, and did not take questions from local media about Mississauga’s unique needs.
With Justin Trudeau’s decision for such a short campaign period, Mississauga and municipalities across the country have been shut out of the usual process to secure funding commitments.
The future for hundreds of cities facing unprecedented needs such as transportation funding, affordable housing dollars and help with climate change has not been well served by the decision to call a rushed election.
A recommendation headed to the Peel Regional Police Services Board on Friday against establishing an anti-Black racism panel is another sign the police organization is not living up to stated commitments, ignoring crucial community engagement to turn around decades of harm done to Black residents in Brampton and Mississauga.
Provincially-appointed board supervisor Bruce Rodrigues will stay in place, despite a request by nine PDSB trustees who want him to leave so they can regain control of the board. They were stripped of their elected responsibilities after a provincial probe found the board’s leadership perpetuated a harmful culture of systemic racism. The Province has confirmed to The Pointer Rodrigues will remain as the supervisor until Queen’s Park’s sweeping directives to transform the troubled organization are properly implemented.
The force’s Internet Child Exploitation Unit has seen its workload grow exponentially over the last five years with reports of potential child sexual abuse material almost doubling every year since 2018. The volume of harmful images and videos uploaded every second is humanly impossible to analyze.
Tech companies have taken little responsibility for their role in these criminal acts, but this could change as companies like Twitter and MindGeek find themselves before the courts.
After their disgraceful behaviour, admittedly allowing systemic racism to flourish inside Peel’s largest school board, nine trustees now say a supervisor brought in by the provincial government to do what they refused, is no longer welcome.
For the past six years, the operating budgets of police, fire and paramedics in Peel have all grown significantly.
While expansion has taken place for all services, police continue to receive the bulk of funding while paramedics and fire scramble for the funds needed to maintain basic services that are already stretched.
A myriad of factors mean Peel has one of the worst rates of diabetes in Canada. Food insecurity, unwalkable streets and a large South Asian-Canadian community genetically prone to the dangerous condition all combine to push diabetes rates in Brampton and Mississauga through the roof.
A Bill tabled by Brampton MP Sonia Sidhu received Royal Assent at the end of June, and proposes a national framework to deal with the problem. Despite the apparent win for her constituents, she’s reluctant to talk about her move to protect millions of Canadians.
Green solutions being implemented across the globe to combat climate change all started with ideas — capturing sunlight, a train that flies at 600 km/h, turning organic waste into energy — all of which would have seemed far-fetched at one time, but are now completely normal across the world.
As we continue to learn and adapt to the changing climate, keeping an open mind may be our best tool for saving the planet.
Dr. Kieran Moore, the province's Chief Medical Officer of Health, is warning Ontarians that it could be a difficult fall and winter.
With the majority of Peel students opting to return to the classroom after months away from their peers, it creates difficult questions for school boards tasked with keeping children safe from COVID-19, and parents who fear they could be putting their children and families at risk.
With the GTA continuing to explode, as cranes and new subdivisions keep popping up across Canada’s main population centre, the ruling PCs have failed to put forward a cohesive transportation plan to keep people, and the economy moving.
Since the Liberals launched the Big Move 13 years ago, a $50-billion strategy to modernize Ontario’s crippled transportation system, planning under Doug Ford has gone backward.
The Liberal Party has managed to keep Peel’s two largest cities red since sweeping all 11 ridings in 2015.
After Sunday’s election call, the Conservatives, NDP and Greens are still trying to find competitors to challenge the eight incumbent Liberals seeking reelection in Brampton and Mississauga. Few have been officially announced.
Tucked behind the G.E. Booth Wastewater Treatment Facility in the southeast corner of Mississauga, a paradise for migrating birds and insects will soon emerge. The Jim Tovey Conservation Area is making progress to bringing the community closer to a natural world cut off by industrialization for decades.
The newly constructed shoreline adds wetlands, meadows and a forest while connecting the waterfront trail to the Lakeview development.
It could be a model for future green projects in the Region.
Mississauga-Streetsville MP Gagan Sikand has been on medical leave since October of last year, leaving constituents with few options for assistance from their federal representative.
On Sunday, hours after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced Canadians would be headed to the polls in September, Sikand broke his silence to announce he would not be seeking reelection.
Peel’s sprawling geography and the reputation of Toronto’s vibrant, liberal-spirited downtown have made it hard for LGBTQ+ organizations and businesses to flourish in Brampton and Mississauga.
A range of friendly spaces have come and gone, while many locals have been left frustrated searching for their own sense of community.
With wide-ranging allegations of corruption and fraud to examine, more time has been granted for the third-party investigation into the conduct of senior City staffers and Mayor Patrick Brown, raising questions about why he and his supporters tried to curtail the probe.
Many of the allegations are not new, and some council members raised their own concerns months before a City director came forward publicly with a long list of evidence against the mayor, controversial CAO David Barrick (recruited by Brown) and senior employees since hired by the disgraced former Niagara politician.
Leading climate scientists have made it clear, humanity is at its tipping point.
Human influence has already badly scarred the planet, locking in future warming, sea level rise and the acidification of our oceans for centuries to come.
If humanity wants its way of life to continue, emissions have to be radically curtailed, immediately. The oil industry, banks that underwrite it and politicians have run out of time. Our planet will not survive any more excuses.
The role of libraries is important in any city. Rows of books and public computers offer unlimited knowledge to residents free of charge, playing a vital role in fostering equality and democracy.
In Mississauga, librarians from a predominantly white organization are tasked with reflecting a mosaic of different identities, cultures and beliefs. They are expected to provide for everyone, elevate underrepresented communities and also supply potentially controversial materials that may stimulate debate.