April 19, 2011
A national labour union confederation has kicked off a political education drive aimed at increasing voter turnout for the upcoming May 2nd federal election. The Confederation of Canadian Unions (CCU), representing thousands of union members throughout the country, has received responses from a questionnaire it sent to the five major parties at the beginning of the election campaign. Named “Raise Your Voice, Cast Your Vote,” the questionnaire relates to issues that matter to wage earners and working class people. “For far too long, elections and political parties have ignored the concerns of workers, and it has caused millions of them to stay at home on voting day,” says CCU President Joanie Cameron Pritchett. “That’s why we asked the parties directly about their views on unions, wages, collective bargaining and workers rights.”
The fifteen questions in the document also discuss the environment, health care, trade, jobs, child care, education and human rights, and the responses received from the Liberals, NDP, Greens and Bloc Quebecois (in French) are posted on the organization’s website (www.ccu-csc.ca). The Conservative Party, however, still haven’t provided their responses. “We gave each party more than a week to complete the questionnaire and we asked for the responses on April 12th, yet we still haven’t heard from the Conservatives”, said Pritchett. “We also called them on numerous occasions, but they couldn’t even tell us when it might be completed.” Voter turnout has been rapidly declining in Canada, and statistics show that it is especially low-income and working class families that aren’t exercising their voting rights. “There are many organizations throughout the country engaged in this election,” says Robin Smith, a CCU delegate. “Our program, however, was designed specifically to speak to the concerns of workers and progressive-minded people in Canada today.”
The CCU believes their “Raise Your Voice, Cast Your Vote” campaign is the best way to engage working Canadians. “There were some surprising answers on a few of the issues,” says Smith. “But there’s nothing more genuine than asking politicians direct questions and getting straight answers, without the fluff and spin. The voters of Canada deserve nothing less.” CCU President Joanie Cameron Pritchett is available for media interviews. Please contact the number below.
### Contact Joanie Cameron Pritchett,
CCU President 416.736.5109
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