Ontario Votes 2007: Interview with Green candidate Marija Minic, York Centre
Monday, September 17, 2007
Marija Minic is running for the Green Party of Ontario in the Ontario provincial election, in the York Centre riding. Wikinews' Nick Moreau interviewed her regarding her values, her experience, and her campaign.
Stay tuned for further interviews; every candidate from every party is eligible, and will be contacted. Expect interviews from Liberals, Progressive Conservatives, New Democratic Party members, Ontario Greens, as well as members from the Family Coalition, Freedom, Communist, Libertarian, and Confederation of Regions parties, as well as independents.
Why have you chosen to involve yourself in the political process? Why did you choose to run in this constituency?
- I have chosen to involve myself in the political process because I am a conservation biologist by trade, therefore I’m passionate about the environment and its limited resources, and I am also passionate about social justice. I feel that I would have much more of a positive effect if I got involved politically than by doing research and writing reports which will only be read by those in the field. I chose to run in this constituency because I am in the riding often for work, and feel that locally, there needs a lot to be done.
What prior political experience do you have? What skills and insight can you bring to office, from other non-political positions you may have held?
- Although I have no prior political experience, apart from running for secondary school student council, I feel I have a lot of energy, knowledge and passion to bring to the position of an elected representative. I am a hard worker and enjoying listening to, learning from and working with people from all backgrounds and walks of life.
Which of your competitors do you expect to pose the biggest challenge to your candidacy? Why? What makes you the most desirable of all candidates running in the riding?
- The Liberal incumbent, Monte Kwinter, has a great deal of experience, having been a Member of Provincial Parliament for many years. However, I have youth, energy and a great deal of passion on my side as desirable qualities of all the candidates.
What do you feel are the three most important issues to voters in your riding? Are these the same top three issues that are most important to you? What would you do to address these issues?
- The top three issues are education, the environment and healthcare for voters in York Centre riding. These also happen to be the top three issues that are most important to me. I would push for a single, publicly-funded school system, preventative healthcare, bringing back Branson Hospital to fully function as a hospital (not just a clinic), and implement much tougher legislation on renewable energy and greenhouse gas emissions.
What should be the first order of business in the 39th Legislative Assembly?
- Tougher legislations on greenhouse gas emissions should be the first order of business, in my opinion.
Are the property taxes in your riding at a fair level for the amount of services received in the municipality?
- I don’t believe that property taxes are at a fair level for the amount of services received in the municipality. I would push for “tax shifting” away from income and property and onto the big polluters and resource users, according to the “polluter-pays-principle”.
How can the province lead the way in stimulating job creation?
- If sustainability (not just in the environmental sense) is taken into account in all provincial legislation, more jobs would be created and less would be lost. Also, if money is more wisely and efficiently spent on elementary, secondary and tertiary education as well as job training, students would benefit from having the proper skills to enter the workforce and succeed in it.
What are your views on the mixed member proportional representation (MMP) referendum?
- I feel that mixed member proportional representation (MMP) is a fairer system that works well in countries like New Zealand. I feel that Ontario should adopt this system for future elections.
What role, if any, does "new media" play in your campaign, and the campaign of your party? (websites, blogs, Facebook, YouTube videos, etc) Do you view it as beneficial, or a challenge?
- “New media” has definitely allowed for reaching out to a wider audience which was not earlier possible. It is definitely beneficial to the campaign!
Of the decisions made by Ontario's 38th Legislative Assembly, which was the most beneficial to your this electoral district? To the province as a whole? Which was least beneficial, or even harmful, to your this riding? To the province as a whole?
- To the people of the province of Ontario as a whole, the many promises Premier Dalton McGuinty has broken has been most harmful to us, as well as members of York Centre riding, including those of not phasing out coal and nuclear plants by the originally stated dates. Also, the closing down of Branson Hospital has hit the people of York Centre riding hard. Some of the environmental legislations implemented by the 38th Legislative Assembly have been beneficial, but could definitely be improved upon. This is why I encourage you to vote for the Green Party of Ontario in the upcoming election on October 10, 2007.