CanadaVOTES: NDP candidate Ryan Dolby running in Elgin—Middlesex—London
Friday, September 26, 2008
On October 14, 2008, Canadians will be heading to the polls for the federal election. New Democratic Party candidate Pastor Ryan Dolby is standing for election in the riding of Elgin—Middlesex—London.
Born in Chatham, he moved to St. Thomas in 1994, and recently to the Village of Shedden. An employee of Lear Corporation, Dolby is a CAW Local 2168 member, who serves as Union Benefits Representative, and Local Trustee and Chair of the Union in Politics Committee. A CAW Council Delegate representative, he was appointed to the CAW National Employment Insurance Committee in 2006. He is involved in community organizations ranging from the St. Thomas Action Centre, United Way, the St. Thomas Women’s Shelter and the St. Thomas Fanshawe College Campus Advisory Committee. Having studied at the University of Windsor, he is currently completing the Labour Studies Certificate Program at McMaster University, aiming towards a Bachelor's Degree in Labour Studies
Wikinews contacted Ryan, to talk about the issues facing Canadians, and what they and their party would do to address them. Wikinews is in the process of contacting every candidate, in every riding across the country, no matter their political stripe. All interviews are conducted over e-mail, and interviews are published unedited, allowing candidates to impart their full message to our readers, uninterrupted.
In 1996, the riding was created through the amalgamation of the Elgin—Norfolk, Lambton—Middlesex, and London—Middlesex ridings. While it was a Liberal riding for many years, through Jean Chretien's Parliamentary Secretary Gar Knutson, in 2004, the riding became Conservative, with Joe Preston taking its reigns. Besides Dolby and Preston, the riding's candidates include Liberal Suzanne van Bommel, Green Will Arlow, CAP Noel Burgon, CHP Carl Hiemstra, and independent Michael van Holst.
For more information, visit the campaign's official website, listed below.
Why are you running for political office, why at the federal level, why this party, and why in this riding?
- I’m running because of the thousands of people who have asked me to run because they can’t trust Stephen Harper and the Conservatives to protect their jobs, their health care, and the environment. This election is not about Jack Layton, Ryan Dolby and the team of New Democrats. It is about you and your family. We will act on ‘kitchen table’ issues, not just boardroom table issues. I am hoping to make a difference by putting families first.
Previous to this campaign, have you been politically involved? How will you apply your previous work/volunteer/life experience to serving your constituents?
- I have been involved over the years with the local Labour Council and helping to raise money for the United Way and local Women’s Shelters in St Thomas, London and the surrounding areas. As a member of my local Union in Politics Committee, I have helped out on many campaigns including the Manufacturing Matters Campaign. I feel that my experience as a CAW Representative will help me while dealing with members of the community, while trying to solve their day to day issues. While In Ottawa, my firsthand knowledge of the problems faced by working people will help me to shape policy and legislation.
As you campaign around your riding, it's likely that some issues are mentioned more often by voters, than other issues. What would you say are the three hottest topics this election, in your riding? What would you and your party do to address these issues?
- Definitely the 3 biggest issues are the Economy, Health Care and the Environment
- For the economy, we will deliver on a 'Made in Canada' Green Manufacturing Policy that will protect jobs and create new jobs. The Conservatives and the Liberals have made many promises to improve the economy and they have failed to deliver. Hundreds of thousands of family supporting manufacturing jobs have been lost, including thousands in our own community. Jobs that make our communities a good place to live. Jobs that the Conservatives and the Liberals don't seem to care about. Meanwhile, the gap between the rich and the rest of us continues to grow, while consumers are being gouged by high gas prices, the banks and cell phone companies.
- For health care, the Conservatives and the Liberals promised to reduce your health care wait times, and they didn't do that either. On top of that, today 5 million Canadians don't have a family doctor. The New Democrats will shorten wait times, not by making more empty promises, but by training more doctors and nurses.
- For the environment, the Conservatives and the Liberals promised you they would tackle the climate change crisis and protect the environment. They failed at that too. Today, our polar ice caps are disappearing, our sea levels are rising and over 20,000 Canadians are dying each year from air pollution, while you pay record gas prices. The New Democrats Cap and Trade Policy will make sure Canada lives up to the challenge of climate change, not with idle words or by taxing you and your family, but with tough laws that force polluters to clean up their mess and pay their fair share.
Is there any misconceptions about you, your leader, or your party and platform?
- I think the public is starting to recognize Jack Layton's leadership capabilities. The latest polls have shown that people feel he has the skills and qualities they want in a leader. Also, people are starting to recognize the sense in the NDP policies and that this is the time for a change.
There's a more ways than ever to get your message out, from the traditional campaign fliers and lawn signs, to new media like websites, Facebook, and YouTube. The tried-and-true routes get the message out to the masses much easier, but digital alternatives are much more measurable in how many are seeing or interacting with your campaign. What seems to be the most effective, from your experience?
- We are getting an excellent response from our Facebook webpage. People can sign up for lawn signs or find out how to donate to our campaign. It is an exciting new method to get information out to people.