Elizabeth May, Leader of the Green Party of Canada, MP for Saanich-Gulf Islands
Elizabeth is a leader working for her constituents, for Canada, and a much needed champion for democracy and social justice.
At the end of May, it will be four years since Elizabeth May was sworn in as the first Green MP in Canada. Please join us at the Rally to celebrate this milestone and help launch her re-election.
Elizabeth's collaborative approach and dedication led to her acclaim as Parliamentarian of the Year, Hardest Working MP, and Orator of the Year by votes by all MPs.
Elizabeth's work for her constituents, Canada, and for the future of our planet is an inspiration. And now she is in the 2015 election debates!
As MP for Saanich-Gulf Islands and Leader of the Green Party of Canada, Elizabeth has a powerful vision for our country:
Elizabeth May - By The Numbers (over 2011 - 2015)
75+ Number of town halls held by Elizabeth to listen to Saanich-Gulf Island constituents
25 Percent of all opposition private member bills that have been passed into law that were introduced by Elizabeth
2 Days to work with the Revenue Minister to resolve the CRA error on the 2015 deadline for income tax returns
21 Number of round-trip ferry trips Elizabeth took in the last year to meet with Saanich-Gulf Island constituents
24 Minutes before a Saanich Gulf-Island constituent received a personal response from Elizabeth regarding her petition to the House of Commons
2 Number of Green Party of Canada legislative amendments introduced by Elizabeth that were accepted by the Harper administration in the last two sessions of Parliament
1000+ Number of Green Party legislative Canada amendments introduced by Elizabeth that were rejected by the Harper administration over the last two sessions of Parliament
Electing Elizabeth as our Green MP works - we all benefit from real representation in Ottawa! Let's re-elect Elizabeth for another four years as the MP for Saanich-Gulf Islands. Pledge your vote! And help to elect more Green MPs. See the stellar roster of Green Party candidates for 2015.
In this issue...
- Elizabeth May & Friends 4th Anniversary Rally
- People First - Rebuilding Canada’s Democracy
- Budget Blues
- Earth Day, Week, Month, Millennium...
- Upcoming Events
Elizabeth May & Friends 4th Anniversary Rally: The Time is Now
Join the crowds celebrating the 4th Anniversary of Elizabeth May's swearing in as the first elected Green Party member in the House of Commons. This is the official launch of Elizabeth's 2015 re-election campaign and a great opportunity to show your appreciation for Elizabeth. She has done so much in four years!
Come to learn more about Elizabeth's bold vision for Canada in the post-Harper era. 2015 is the year to restore our democracy – the time is now!
Speakers at the Rally include: Elizabeth May herself, Arthur Black, noted humourist and author, Frances Litman, Green Party candidate for Esquimalt-Saanich-Sooke; Andrew Weaver, the first elected Green Party MLA in Canada; Adam Olsen, member of the Tsartlip First Nation and Interim Leader of the Green Party of BC, and others.
Musicians from Salt Spring Island, North Saanich and Victoria and a special appearance by Bill Henderson of Chilliwack will give us more reasons for dancing. Locally produced food and refreshments will be on sale.
Let's send Elizabeth back to Ottawa with a full caucus of highly qualified Green Members of Parliament. Bring your chequebook! And if you need further inspiration on just how critical the 2015 election is to our democracy and our planet, see our video compilation: Why Now? Because Canada Matters!
The Rally is free but space is limited. Please reserve your ticket now.
When: May 29, 2015 at 5:30 - 9pm (Program with speakers begins at 7pm)
Where: 'The Hangar', 9800 McDonald Park Rd., Sidney Google map and directions
People First - Rebuilding Canada’s Democracy
During Stephen Harper’s tenure as Prime Minister, the damage to Canada’s democracy is dramatic.
The now infamous Bill C-51, is just one example. It was rushed through parliament. The Report Stage was moved to Friday 24th April and, as intended by the Conservatives, few MPs attended. Elizabeth cancelled events in BC to be there for the debate. Elizabeth was the only federal party leader present!
Watch Elizabeth’s compelling speech in the House on just how dangerous the Bill C-51 legislation really is to our rights and freedoms.
Sign our petition demanding the repeal of C-51.
The Harper administration is still ‘working on’ improved regulations for oil and gas sector greenhouse gas emissions, seven years after promising to do so, whereas the C-51 legislation that strips our democracy bare may become law in record time.
Elizabeth May sees the need to restore Canada’s democracy as not just one issue, but the key issue in the upcoming federal election. We need committed representatives who will work to repeal Harper's anti-democratic legislation and replace the 'First Past the Post' system of voting with proportional representation that gives equal weight to all votes. We deserve much more than a ‘democracy theme park’ in Ottawa.
Canadians know that most MPs primarily represent their party and special interests. The consequences to our democracy are dramatic: prorogations of Parliament to protect Conservative rule, ever increasing control by the Prime Minister’s Office, omnibus bills that hide major legislative changes, ridiculous limits on debate, and tightly scripted non-answers given in Question Period and to media. Public servants are muzzled, civil society organizations are harassed, even voting is now more difficult — the list goes on.
Elizabeth repeatedly shows a better way, putting her constituents and Canada first. In 2015, we must send Elizabeth back to Ottawa with a caucus of highly qualified Green MP that will restore Canada's democracy, reclaim the traditions of Parliament that allow government to govern on behalf of Canadians, support a strong, effective public service, independent research and regulatory oversight, and a robust civil society.
In the 2015 election, we can heal Canadian democracy.
Continued Green leadership by SGI voters is key. Help Elizabeth to restore our democracy. Pledge Your Vote. Donate your time volunteering for Elizabeth to support her re-election. Her voice is strong and clear but she needs our help, “making democracy work, is work.”
Coming to a Beach Near You…?
The April 8th bunker spill of highly toxic bunker fuel in Vancouver’s English Bay is a window into a dark future for the west coast if proposals go ahead for more dilbit-carryiing pipelines and tankers. The spill occurred in calm seas in an urban port where notification and containment should be relatively fast. This is not what happened. The slow response to the spill shows that the reassurances of the federal government and its regulatory agencies - that it is safe to add more dilbit pipelines and tanker traffic on the west coast - cannot be trusted.
The news of the fuel leak from a Cypriot grain tanker waiting to be loaded was well covered by local, national and international media. The inadequacy of the response was clear. The CBC noted the many Vancouver beaches affected by what was a relatively minor amount (18 barrels) of fuel.
In a recent interview, Elizabeth May highlighted how this event exposes significant weaknesses in Canada’s ability to respond to oil or dilbit spills. This is entirely under federal jurisdiction. Elizabeth linked the poor response directly with cuts made by Harper’s Conservatives to Environment Canada, the Department of Fisheries and Oceans (especially its Marine Mammal Contaminants Program) and the Coast Guard. Our capacity to prepare for and respond to fossil fuel spills has been decimated. Elizabeth noted a related issue - an oil industry-controlled private company is contracted to contain and clean up fossil fuel spills.Read more
In this issue...
- Update on Bill C-51
- ISIS Crisis?
- An Economy for the 21st Century
- Elizabeth May Must Be in the 2015 Election Debates
- Saanich Campaign Office Open House
- Volunteer News
- Upcoming Events
Update on Bill C-51
Fast tracking of the ‘Anti-terrorism’ legislation continues as debate and input by experts is restricted. Questions or criticism are met with Conservative assurances that the new and sweeping powers won’t be abused or, worse, insults implying that any opposition means support for terrorists.
Multiple witnesses at the C-51 hearings identified the lack of meaningful oversight as the bill's biggest flaw. A former CIA agent called it shocking. Although Conservatives repeatedly state the Security Intelligence Review Committee (SIRC) will provide CSIS oversight, SIRC has had no change in its mandate or any additional resources.
True to its constructive role in the House, the Green Party proposed 60 positive amendments to the bill. None were accepted. Cosmetic amendments by Conservatives were approved, but the radical, unprecedented, and unacceptable powers remain.
None of the secret police activities are changed. Bill C-51 will permit active, covert activities including violations of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Such activities by CSIS are immune from civil proceedings. As one observer put it, how can we “address Charter busting warrants issued at secret hearings that cannot be appealed?”
Show your opposition to Bill C-51 - Sign our petition “Defend Our Rights and Freedoms”. Write letters to the editor, call in to radio shows. We must be heard.
The Conservatives continue to whip up the fear of terrorism and use it to justify expanded Canadian action against ISIS. Similar to Bill C-51, this will not have the desired result - Canadians will not be safer.
Respected military journalist, Gwynne Dyer, repeatedly states that terrorism is a very small problem and the military response by the West simply feeds into the narrative that ISIS wants to provoke to justify their cause.
The situation in Syria is already considered to be the worst humanitarian crisis since World War II. Increased bombing in the region by the West will add to the millions of suffering people in Syria and refugee camps in neighbouring countries. Half of the refugees are children who have lost everything.
Elizabeth advocates for peaceful resolution. Canadians deserve to hear about this alternative approach to counter terrorism. Shockingly, the Conservatives blocked her from speaking on the ISIS extension. Her press release gives her key objections - the ISIS mission is counterproductive, lacks clear goals, and is not backed by international law. Expanded military action will not reduce the suffering. It mainly serves to scare Canadians as part of Harper’s re-election strategy of fear.
Help Elizabeth to restore our international reputation. Sign our petition to include Elizabeth in the 2015 debates. Donate to her re-election campaign.Read more
Elizabeth May cautions proposed anti-terrorism bill is not about protecting Canadians but about “the crass politics of fear and division”
Support for Bill C-51 is dropping. And as Canadians learn more about “the dangerous provisions” in the bill, our opposition grows. The proposed legislation opposes Canadian values of fairness, justice and the right to express opinions without fear.
Elizabeth May was the first federal party leader to denounce Bill C-51. In Parliament on February 2nd, she called the bill "so overbroad” that it “could apply to anything” and questioned its legality. Weeks later, the NDP also spoke against it. The Liberals continue to support it with amendments. And now opposition by Conservatives themselves is growing.
Elizabeth and a chorus of respected observers argue that the bill is so flawed that all Opposition parties should reject it outright.
Elizabeth first raised the alarm about the vague, expansive definition of ‘terror’ in the bill that could criminalize freedom of expression and legitimate protest, including non-violent civil disobedience and activities such as anti-pipeline and tankers protests. She was the first to recognize the sweeping new powers it gives to CSIS - creating a secret police. The horror of terrorism is very real, but this legislation does not address risks to Canadians and will not make us safer – rather, Bill C-51 itself has "dangerous collateral consequences” to our security and rights.
Bill C-51 Criminalizes Freedom of Expression
Elizabeth participated in the National Day of Protest against Bill C-51 on March 14th, along with thousands of us in Victoria, Salt Spring Island and across Canada, denouncing this attempt to stifle our right to peaceful protest and dissent.
- Eminent objectors to Bill C-51 including four former Canadian prime ministers, are now labelled 'conspiracy theory' supporters!
Leadership from Saanich Gulf Islands, Leadership for Canada
Elizabeth May engages voters with her straightforward, no-nonsense approach to politics. In striking contrast to most politicians, Elizabeth is candid, well informed, and refreshing. Four years ago, the constituents of Saanich Gulf Islands rallied to this positive way of ‘doing politics’ and elected Elizabeth May as the first Green Member of Parliament in Canadian history.
We showed that you can make a positive choice, voting with both your head and heart. Saanich Gulf Islands had one of the highest voter turnouts in the 2011 election, a strong demonstration of democracy at work. Although the current first-past-the-post electoral system favours the established parties, we proved the pundits wrong -- our votes counted.
With our support and Elizabeth’s principled approach, she accomplishes more for her constituents than any other MP in Ottawa. We enabled a powerful champion of Canadian democracy and evidence-based policy to speak for us. And she does!
Ask yourself - did you ever feel proud of your MP before 2011?
Elizabeth was the first leader to:
- Speak against the so-called anti-terrorist bill C-51 currently being being rushed through Parliament. This anti-democratic legislation will provide undefined powers with minimal oversight and could be abused to prevent legitimate protest.
- Raise the alarm about the harmful and long-term consequences of investor-state treaties, including the recently ratified agreement with China that will last 31 years.
- Protest against the profound implications of Bill C-38, the omnibus budget bill that eradicated much of Canada’s environmental monitoring capacity and regulatory oversight. This 420-page bill affected 70 existing laws, yet was fast-tracked through the Finance Committee with minimal debate permitted.
- Post all of her MP expenses on-line.
Time and again, Elizabeth has proven her leadership and raised the alarm on the fear and deception tactics that are undermining Canadian democracy and subsidizing corporate control of the environment.
We showed Canada the difference that an ethical, hard-working and principled representative can make. Our votes helped Elizabeth to make significant achievements. She has proven her effectiveness as our representative and as a staunch advocate for Canadian democracy.
The voters of Saanich Gulf Islands demonstrated vision, leadership and courage by choosing Elizabeth as our representative. At a time when Canada needs true leadership more than ever, we can re-elect “Canada’s most effective MP” (Right Honourable Joe Clark, former Conservative prime minister).
We All Win
Our voices are heard in Ottawa because we chose Elizabeth. Support Elizabeth in 2015 by voting for her and encouraging others to vote. Saanich Gulf Island led the way - the Green Party can make a huge difference.
Show Your Support: Help Elizabeth help us - Pledge your vote for 2015!
In this issue...
- The Trouble with 'Terror'
- Weird (Climate) Science
- Why Vote?
- Going Green!
- Why Do You Support EM?
- Upcoming Events
The Trouble with 'Terror'
Bill C-51, the so-called Anti-Terrorist Act, threatens Canadian democracy, rights, and freedoms. Harper wants Canadians to be afraid, very afraid. The reality is that we are not living in a world that is becoming increasingly unsafe.
Elizabeth May continues to show leadership with timely, thoughtful analysis of the bill. Recently, a panel of Canadian experts including Elizabeth, discussed the numerous problems with this legislation. See the Bill C-51 Town Hall videos from this forum hosted by University of Victoria Greens.
The proposed legislation is alarming a diverse and growing number of Canadians - activists, lawyers, academics, Supreme Court judges, and even four former Prime Ministers!
Conrad Black condemns Bill C-51, stating “it makes a Swiss cheese out of due process”. Others see this legislation as the latest chapter in the Harper administration's ongoing "dismantling of Canada".
The best response to the latest fear campaign is be informed and take action. Sign our petition Defend Our Rights and Freedoms. Join the protest marches across Canada on Saturday 14th March (see Victoria event below).
Weird (Climate) Science Used by Canadian Government
It’s not news that the Harper administration acts to prevent the release of any research showing negative impacts of oil sands development. Government scientists can no longer communicate their results or even apply for funding without explicit approval. Most fear retaliation if they raise concerns about public safety or the environment.
A new and alarming development, however, was revealed in a leaked intelligence report from the RCMP. It not only questions the well-established fact of climate change but also suggests that the 'anti-petroleum movement' is a fringe, extremist group that is a growing security threat to Canada...
As Elizabeth commented in the Bill C-51 town halls, Harper has “conflated petroleum with patriotism”.
The distorted, biased 'science' in the RCMP memo is beyond weird. Viewed through the lens of the proposed Bill C-51, this is chilling news. This is 'climate denier' propaganda. Elizabeth May has repeatedly asked the Harper government whether C-51 will exclude non-violent protest. The non-answers indicate that dissent is being criminalized in Canada.
In this issue...
- Open House for Campaign Office
- Show Your Support
- Are You Registered to Vote?
- ‘Strategic’ Voting
- Elizabeth Questions Intent of New Anti-Terrorism Bill
- Upcoming Events
Open House for Elizabeth May Campaign Office
Standing room only at 2355 James White Blvd in Sidney!
An enthusiastic crowd of over 100 Green supporters listened to Elizabeth. They were eager to take on the challenge issued by Jo-Ann Roberts, Green Party candidate for Victoria, to see which riding will have the highest voter turn-out in 2015. Saanich Gulf Islands had nearly the greatest voter turn-out across Canada in 2011 (two small ridings in PEI did have a slightly higher percent turnout).
Thanks to the Greens and Leader Elizabeth May's demonstrated commitment to an effective Canadian democracy, an amazing roster of candidates is emerging. The Green Party of Canada has an excellent chance to grow the positive influence of Green values on our democracy: Mair Predicts: Greens Will Hold Balance of Power and Elizabeth May, Power-Broker.
Show Your Support for Elizabeth
We are so fortunate to have Canada's best MP. Elizabeth has done a phenomenal job. It is Valentine's Day - Show your love and appreciation for Elizabeth's hard work by pledging your vote.
- First Green Party Legislation in Canada!
- Climate Change
- Update on Pipelines
- New Donation Limit for 2015
- Upcoming Events
Wishing you a Happy & Healthy 2015!
It's an election year, so follow us for updates on the many important issues facing Canadians - climate change, electoral reform, jobs and the economy, and more.
We are pleased and privileged to have Elizabeth represent us so effectively in Ottawa. Adding to her list of kudos based on votes of all MPs ("Parliamentarian of the Year" in 2012, "Hardest Working MP” in 2013, and "Maclean's Orator of the Year for 2014") - Elizabeth earned recognition as one of the top three most valuable politicians in a survey by the The Hill Times, an independent Ottawa-based news weekly covering government and federal politics.
First Green Party Legislation in Canada!
Elizabeth May’s Private Members Bill, C-442, An Act Respecting a Federal Framework on Lyme Disease, is the first Green Party legislation to pass into law. It was passed unanimously by both the House and the Senate and received Royal Assent on December 16th.
This is a key step toward a framework for federal, provincial and territorial health ministers, the healthcare community, and patients’ groups to collaborate on the much-needed awareness, diagnosis, treatment, and research for Lyme Disease.
Elizabeth worked with many stakeholders and across all political parties to make this happen. She acknowledged the support of the bill’s sponsor in the Senate, Senator Janis Johnson and Minster of Health Rona Ambrose. The constructive, collaborative approach repeatedly demonstrated by Elizabeth is the type of leadership that Canadians need and deserve.
In December, Elizabeth continued her hard work on our (and the planet's) behalf by participating in the COP20 climate talks in Lima, Peru. She was the only federal leader and only opposition MP from Canada to attend this key meeting to develop a framework for a binding agreement in Paris at COP 21 later this year. Read more of Elizabeth's thoughts on her Lima 2014 blog and her article Climate Talks: A long road from Lima to Paris.
Canada must take real action before 2020 and go beyond the embarrassing, weak and mostly unfulfilled Harper administration pledge to reduce emissions.
Climate change is a critical, arguably the most critical, issue of our time. United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon recently commented that we are the "last [generation] that can take steps to avoid the worst impacts of climate change". Yet, Canada continues to be seen globally as a laggard or worse.
The Nature publication this week, Climate Science: Unburnable Fossil-fuel Reserves, highlights the need for an effective climate change policy and real action (summary here). The serious disconnect between the Harper administration's rhetoric and taxpayer-funded marketing of the oilsands, and the realities of climate change are clear - if China and the US can commit to emission reductions, why can't Canada?