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Candidate Profile Picture: Elgin-Middlesex-London

Bronagh Morgan is the Green Party candidate running in the Elgin-Middlesex-London riding. May 30, 2018. (Submitted by Bronagh Morgan)

Bronagh Morgan is the Green Party candidate running in the Elgin-Middlesex-London riding. May 30, 2018. (Submitted by Bronagh Morgan)

Ontarians will go to the polls this Thursday to elect their provincial government. Blackburn News reached out to candidates in Elgin-Middlesex-London to ask them the same questions about some of the top issues in the campaign.

The questions, and their answers, are below.

Name: Bronagh Morgan, B.A., LL.B.

Party affiliation: Green Party of Ontario
Profession: Non-practicing lawyer
Hometown: Niagara Falls, On
What is the biggest issue in this election?
Biggest issue(s) as usual are jobs and health care. It’s good to see mental health care and addictions issues and the need to tackle them being brought to the forefront this time out. It gives me hope that our neighbours who have been suffering in silence for so long now know that they’re not being ignored. Our riding of E-M-L has been hit particularly hard by job losses. There’s a lot in the Green platform about bringing good paying jobs in green energy to the region
What is the biggest challenge in Ontario education?
Biggest challenge(s) as usual for the Green Party as a whole, and me as a candidate, are getting the message out and getting people to vote with their hearts and minds rather than out of fear or habit. I like to say that most people are Green voters; they just don’t know it yet, or want to admit it. If people would take the time to read the platform, or have the opportunity to hear Mike Schreiner speak about our vision for doing politics differently, I know they’d realize that the Green platform make so much sense, and reflects the way that many of us, particularly rural Ontarians, are already living our lives. Conservation. Smart choices about spending. Reducing waste. Supporting our neighbours. It’s all in there.
How would your party address the challenges in our health care system, particularly long wait times and hospital overcrowding?
What we have now is a sick care, not a health care, system. The Greens are the only party focusing on prevention rather than band-aid solutions to what many are calling a crisis in health. If we can do what’s necessary to keep people out of the health care system – providing them with clean air to breathe, clean water to drink and clean food to eat – and opportunities and incentives to change their habits to ones that are healthy and sustainable – that will go a long way to addressing wait times and overcrowding. Short term – we’d advocate for training and hiring more nurses, PSWs, mental health care professionals and for more community-based services which are so important to citizens of our smaller and rural communities.
How would your party address the need for job creation in southwestern Ontario?
The global green economy is a $6 trillion opportunity! If we could capture even one percent of that here in Ontario, we’d more than recover from the automotive job losses that have left so many in E-M-L jobless and struggling. we are talking about good paying jobs – the average salary of a Canadian in green tech is $92,000. We can attract businesses to this area with financial incentives for green tech industries. We already have the people power and spaces ready to occupy. We just need the political will.
How would your party bring down hydro prices?
Nuclear is an expensive solution to our power needs… and it’s unnecessary, given that we could be buying cheap power from Quebec and Manitoba. We advocate for closing nuclear plants on schedule and working with communities to build smaller renewable energy generation solutions. We’d provide incentives for homeowners and businesses to retrofit their premises to make them more energy-efficient. Specifically for small business, we’d love to sell the surplus cheap energy we’re currently selling to the US to them instead!
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Richard Styve is the Libertarian Party candidate running in the Elgin-Middlesex-London riding. May 30, 2018. (Photo submitted by Richard Styve)

Richard Styve is the Libertarian Party candidate running in the Elgin-Middlesex-London riding. May 30, 2018. (Photo submitted by Richard Styve)

Name: Richard Styve

Party affiliation: Libertarian Party
Profession: Farm hand
Hometown: Aylmer
What is the biggest issue in this election?
To me the biggest issue in this election is the increasing cost of living due to increasing taxes on fuel, heating and the high cost of hydro. These issues not only make it harder for Ontario families to live here but also make it harder for business owners to stay and compete here.
What is the biggest challenge in Ontario education?
The biggest challenge in Ontario education is the bloated bureacracy. Only 32% of funding goes towards the children. The Libertarian is going to attach the funding to the student, so families can choose what school is best for their child. Whether it be public, private or homeschooling, the family will have the funding to choose.
How would your party address the challenges in our health care system, particularly long wait times and hospital overcrowding?
The Libertarian Party is gonna tackle health care in the same manner we are tackling the education system. We are going to attach funding to the patient. In this way we can increase the number of healthcare professionals and reduce bureaucracy without increasing government spending. Canada, Cuba and North Korea are the only places where non-government primary healthcare is illegal. We have choice in every other aspect of our lives so why not healthcare.
How would your party address the need for job creation in southwestern Ontario?
To bring more jobs to Ontario government needs to stop punishing businesses with overwhelming hydro rates, taxes and regulations. Ontario has 288 000 rules and regulations buisness must conform to. The Libertarian party is going to remove the corperate tax and carbon tax, reduce non-environmental regulations, WSIB and cut hydro rates in half. This is how we will make Ontario a job magnet.
How would your party bring down hydro prices?
he Libertarian Party is going to cut hydro rates in half by repealing the green energy act and ending all subsidies going towards the grid. We will end discriminatory delivery charges crushing rural residents and also eliminate time of use billing.
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Amanda Stratton is the New Democratic Party candidate running in the Elgin-Middlesex-London riding. May 30, 2018. (Photo submitted by Amanda Stratton)

Amanda Stratton is the New Democratic Party candidate running in the Elgin-Middlesex-London riding. May 30, 2018. (Photo submitted by Amanda Stratton)

Name: Amanda Stratton

Party affiliation: New Democratic Party
Profession: Small business owner
Hometown: Huron County
What is the biggest issue in this election?
In Elgin – Middlesex – London, the issue that I hear most often at the doors is that everyday life has become unaffordable. That’s why our platform is really resonating with people in this riding. it’s about getting Hydro prices down, keeping kids
What is the biggest challenge in Ontario education?
The funding formula for Ontario’s schools has left every school board struggling–too many schools are understaffed and crumbling, and too many students aren’t getting the education they deserve. The NDP will stop all school closures until we’ve created a new formula that accounts for the individual needs of a school, including things like whether it’s a rural school, the actual number of students with special needs, and the ability to offer programs and opportunities even in small schools. We’ll work with boards and municipalities to help develop schools as real community hubs so that they’re resilient to population changes over time and we can actually plan for the future needs of a neighbourhood. We’ll make sure that special needs funding puts more EAs in classrooms where they’re needed and gives every student a chance to meet their potential in a safe, supportive environment. Andrea Horwath has committed to funding the repairs schools need to be safe and comfortable, and we’ll work with communities to decide when it’s time to replace a school rather than repair it. The NDP will get rid of EQAO and replace it with random sample testing, so that teachers can focus on learning outcomes for their students, not a scorecard.
How would your party address the challenges in our health care system,
particularly long wait times and hospital overcrowding?

For years, Conservative and Liberal governments have been chipping away at our public health care. Now, it’s harder for our families and loved ones to access good health care in Ontario. Andrea Horwath is the only leader with a plan to end hallway medicine inside Ontario’s hospitals, introduce universal Pharmacare for everyone, build the best home care services in the entire country, and fix the crisis in seniors care.

We will restore hospital funding and make sure that it always keeps up with inflation, population growth, aging, and the unique needs of our communities, like the needs of rural hospitals, and we’ll place a moratorium on any further layoffs of nurses and health care workers. Then we’ll bring health care partners together to complete a comprehensive review of staffing needs.

We will immediately take steps to end overcrowding by funding 2,000 new hospital beds – and we’ll complete a comprehensive capacity plan so that our hospitals have the capacity that this growing province needs. We’ll also ensure that there is much better access to home care that really works for people who would rather be cared for at home with support from qualified healthcare workers. This is an option many people would prefer that frees up space in hospitals and costs significantly less.

Our mental health care commitment will streamline our support systems, add capacity to treat 28,000 more Ontarians every year, will put 400 qualified mental health care workers in Ontario high schools, and will ensure that no child waits more than 30 days for mental health treatment. These supports will help people to get care faster and have better outcomes, and they’ll reduce the number of people who have to seek mental health care in hospitals.

The NDP plan invests more than $1.2 billion in hospital operations this year alone. And takes longer term steps to make sure hospitals have the funding, staffing, and capacity they need to end hallway medicine. We will also invest at least $19 billion dollars over the next 10 years in hospital capital expansions and the new hospitals that our growing province needs.

How would your party address the need for job creation in southwestern Ontario?

As the daughter of auto workers, I know that manufacturing jobs built Ontario’s middle-class, and that they’re good jobs you can raise a family on. But the Liberal government sat on the sidelines for more than 15 years while more than 300,000 manufacturing jobs left this province, and Doug Ford has no plan to bring them back.

Andrea Horwath and the NDP have the only plan to address the main deterrent to manufacturers entering and staying in Ontario—hydro prices. While the Liberals and NDP are trying to sell a scheme that trades a break for a couple of years for even higher prices soon after, we know that our manufacturing sector needs long-term affordable energy. Bringing the prices down in a meaningful, sustainable way, and making Hydro One public again will give manufacturers the confidence and security to operate in Ontario.

I know from talking with manufacturing executives that many are struggling to find the skills they need to grow. Together with industry, labour and our college system, we’ll identify skills gaps and work to close them. We’ll create a stream within the Jobs and Prosperity Fund to promote manufacturing research and development. We will work with the Canadian Automotive Partnership Council and Ontario’s new Chief Investment Officer to create a “single window” for automotive and manufacturing investment. Ontario will be the premier destination for the next generation of auto manufacturing
investment.

As a startup community expert, though, I know that our economy has changed and small businesses are now the backbone of our economy. We’ll bring together key partners to collaborate on enhancing the competitiveness of our regional industries. An NDP government will introduce drug and dental programs that allow small employers in our region to be more competitive employers. We’ll revamp our business support system so that it’s more fair to our region’s companies, and so that we’re actually working with employers to help them access that support to create more jobs. We’ll set a goal of one third of Ontario’s $6B in annual government procurement to be from Ontario’s small and scaling businesses so that we’re supporting local jobs.

We will create an advisory panel on the innovation economy made up of domestic business leaders, experts and workers tasked with guiding us in expanding Ontario’s innovation economy, supporting home-grown innovation leaders, bringing more publicly funded research and development to market, shrinking the skilled labour gap, and ensuring that innovation supports good jobs in our region.

In addition to investing in roads and transportation infrastructure that supports business, our 10-year $1 billion investment in rural broadband will ensure businesses across Southwestern Ontario can sell and compete globally.

How would your party bring down hydro prices?
Making Hydro affordable again requires a multi-faceted approach. Here are some of the ways we’ll bring down Hydro prices:
  • an NDP government will get rid of exorbitant rural delivery fees, which will mean up to a 15% reduction in Hydro fees;
  • we’ll get rid of mandatory time-of-use pricing, which hasn’t had anywhere near the impact it was expected to have, and has been unfairly punitive to people who need to use electricity during the day, such as businesses, seniors who are home during the day, and people who must run medical devices;
  • we’ll cap private profit margins for Hydro One at 3%, down from 5.5%;
  • we’ll invest $100M in expanding natural gas to rural areas, allowing many people who heat their homes and water with electricity to make a switch to a more affordable option
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Jeff Yurek is the PC Party candidate running in the Elgin-Middlesex-London riding. May 30, 2018. (Photo submitted by Jeff Yurek)

Jeff Yurek is the PC Party candidate running in the Elgin-Middlesex-London riding. May 30, 2018. (Photo submitted by Jeff Yurek)

Name: Jeff Yurek

Party affiliation: PC Party
Profession: Pharmacist
Hometown: St. Thomas
What is the biggest issue in this election?
Elgin-Middlesex-London is a diverse riding; hence the important issues vary but I am hearing some common themes. For families, it is unaffordable hydro rates, taxes, a failed healthcare system, a broken education system and a real fear about the mounting debt and what that will mean in the long term. For businesses, it is again unaffordable hydro rates, taxes and fees, burdensome regulation and a real uncertainty about the future and for agri-business and farm families it is high speed rail, the burdensome duplication of regulations, red tape and multiple regulating bodies.
What is the biggest challenge in Ontario education?
The biggest challenge in the Ontario education is the lack of vision and leadership: no support for rural schools, the PAR process to close schools is flawed, poor student math scores, concerns of teachers and EAs are ignored and violence and bullying in our schools remains a serious threat to students and teacher’s safety.
How would your party address the challenges in our health care system,
particularly long wait times and hospital overcrowding?
A PC government would invest in community services such as homecare, build 15,000 long-term care beds in 5 years, listen and respect frontline healthcare providers, stop the growth of the healthcare bureaucracy and instead invest in frontline patient care and invest $3.8 billion in Mental Health, addictions and housing
How would your party address the need for job creation in southwestern Ontario?
A PC government would decrease cost of doing business: reduce corporate and small business taxes; decrease energy costs; undertake a treasury board review of regulations to streamline and eliminate those that do nothing but add cost to businesses; create a “one window” point of access for all and mandate a one year deadline for applications; eliminate cap and trade/carbon tax; stabilize industrial hydro rates, increase the risk management program for farmers by $50 million; enable natural gas expansion; commit $100 million for broadband and cellular infrastructure projects and widen the scope of government policy to include rural Ontario. Rural Ontario is a key part of the provinces’ economic engine and it has been ignored too long.
How would your party bring down hydro prices?
A PC government would end expensive green energy projects, direct the Hydro One dividends straight to rate reduction; remove conservation costs from hydro bill; terminate the Green Energy Act and reign in Hydro One CEO and top executive’s salaries.
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Dave Plumb is the Freedom Party of Ontario candidate running in the Elgin-Middlesex-London riding. May 30, 2018. (Photo submitted by Dave Plumb)

Dave Plumb is the Freedom Party of Ontario candidate running in the Elgin-Middlesex-London riding. May 30, 2018. (Photo submitted by Dave Plumb)

Name: Dave Plumb B.Sc.

Party affiliation: Freedom Party of Ontario
Profession: Retired.
Hometown: London On.
What is the biggest issue in this election?
Restoration of Democracy. The Liberal Party governs by autocratic rule (rejection of referendum by Dutton-Dunwich constituents 84% opposing wind farms) backed by forcible suppression of opposition (Election Finances Act revisions in January 2017 abolishing democratic rights of association [Section 23.1] and instituting a paid ballot [Section 32.1]). There is a word defined as autocratic rule with forcible suppression of opposition: fascism. I’m opposed to fascism, as were my father and grandfather who went overseas in the two great wars of the 20th century to combat fascism so that their children and grandchildren – people of my generation – would not have to live under the evil of fascist regimes here. And now we live in a fascist regime, imposed upon us by the Liberal Party of Ontario. That is entirely repugnant and unacceptable to me.
What is the biggest challenge in Ontario education?
What “education”? We don’t educate students, we indoctrinate them. If we educated students, we would teach them how to think. Instead, we teach them what to think. That’s not education; it’s indoctrination, programming, propagandizing, brainwashing… We teach students that how they feel and what they believe is more important than facts. We have compelled speech on one hand and forbidden speech on the other. Due process of law has been replaced by accusation, trial, sentencing and condemnation by social media. Truth or falsehood of the allegations no longer matters. This is not true justice, it’s “social” justice – Star Chambers and kangaroo courts – and it is being widely practiced by students and administrations of our colleges and universities.
How would your party address the challenges in our health care system,
particularly long wait times and hospital overcrowding?
Give people a choice. Right now, Ontario residents are held hostage by a government healthcare monopoly. That is neither right nor democratic. We already have two-tiered healthcare; it’s just not legal in Ontario and it should be. Those who can afford to do so – and there are many – go to other countries and pay out of pocket or through health insurance other than OHIP for procedures such as dental reconstruction, knee and hip replacements, etc. So, our de facto two tiered system serves only to enrich other countries. If that were permitted here, those who are going abroad for such procedures – and no doubt many more in addition – would have the procedures done in Ontario, by doctors working and paying taxes in Ontario, in clinics providing employment in Ontario. That would relieve some of the congestion and wait times in the public system. Beyond that, the excessively bloated administration in the public system has to be greatly reduced and the resources re-tasked to front line health services.
How would your party address the need for job creation in southwestern Ontario?
Restore free enterprise. Ontario businesses are too heavily state controlled by over-regulation. The markets, operating on the bases of supply and demand, should determine prices and wages. Even with those changes, businesses will only stop leaving and start returning here when it once again becomes economically viable for them to operate here. A big first step in achieving that would be to make energy costs affordable again, which brings us to your next question…
How would your party bring down hydro prices?
Repeal the Green Energy Act and Cap and Trade. Tear up the agreements and stop further enriching wealthy foreign multinationals via the GAF (Global Adjustment Factor). Stop selling electricity to the United States for pennies on the dollar of productions cost, at an annual loss to Ontario taxpayers and ratepayers of over a billion dollars. All we’re doing now is providing energy welfare to bordering states so that they can entice businesses constituting our manufacturing base to move there (but don’t bring the formerly employed Ontario workers with them) where they can operate on nearly free energy from Ontario. The Ontario Court of Appeal has ruled that governments can terminate such contracts without recourse; so, the contracts can be torn up but the present government and most other parties lack the spine to do it. We would deal with a federal backstop carbon tax, if imposed, by reducing or eliminating commensurately the Ontario portion of tax on gasoline. Beyond that, we would free energy production and distribution from the shackles of government monopoly and open it up to free enterprise competition. A company like Hydro One, paying the exorbitant multi-million dollar annual salaries of its bloated administration, would not be competitive in a free market system. It would have to get competitive or die.
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Carlie Forsythe is the Liberal Party candidate running in the Elgin-Middlesex-London riding. May 30, 2018. (Photo submitted by Carlie Forsythe)

Carlie Forsythe is the Liberal Party candidate running in the Elgin-Middlesex-London riding. May 30, 2018. (Photo submitted by Carlie Forsythe)

Name: Carlie Forsythe

Party affiliation: Liberal Party
Profession: Presently serving on Fanshawe Board of Governors and the Junction Climbing Centre key-holder.
Hometown: St. Thomas
What is the biggest issue in this election?
The major issue for the campaign is CARE over CUTS. I am keenly aware of the issues of the campaign and what is at risk. We have a growing economy and the lowest unemployment rate since 1991. The positive progress needs to continue. That is why I decided to stand and fight for the residents of this riding. As Past
President of the Fanshawe College Student Union, I was known for getting things done. I understand what is at risk in this election. The progress made in government programs for children, youth and seniors in key areas are worth the fight. That is why I decided to stand up and lean in to advocate and fight for those needing a strong voice at Queen’s Park. I believe I am that voice and will fight for what I believe is right for the citizens of our community.
What is the biggest challenge in Ontario education?
After the critical downturn in the world wide economy, Ontario has been the first to build a new focus and attention to the changing world economy by pivoting into growing the skill trades the current economy needs. At Fanshawe College, I was integral and included in the new programs food processing, agriculture innovation, communication, green energy tech, health care for a changing population, construction trades and more. In addition, financial aid programs sensitive to the student population needs were also innovated and introduced under my leadership. Investment in these programs will make a better economy for tomorrow with graduates ready to tackle the changing world economy faster and better. The understanding of this crucial dynamic is important for me and to the residents of Elgin-Middlesex-London. Also, the Liberal government has understood the need for Early Childhood education with the introduction of free child care for those who qualify will help better equip young children to enter school ready to learn.
How would your party address the challenges in our health care system,
particularly long wait times and hospital overcrowding?

Health Care is an ever evolving need in Ontario. The Liberal party has already announced the addition of 3500 new nurses for the province, historic investments in mental health funding, home care for seniors and much more. Liberals are known for their commitment to funding local hospitals to cut wait times and work with the organizations delivering the critical services and care to make our health care system work toward best practices. There is more work to be done. I hope to continue that work as the strong representative of Elgin-Middlesex-London and a Liberal government.

How would your party address the need for job creation in southwestern Ontario?
The best indicator for job creation is the power the small business community creates meaningful and dynamic employment for the region of south-western Ontario. I have witnessed the innovation in food production and farming in the amazing rural and small urban communities across the riding. I have spoken with many who would like to see continued innovation in initiatives put forward by the current Liberal government to ensure job creation grows.
In order to keep the progress moving forward, investments in local infra-structure must continue with a Liberal government that has made investments across the riding in roads, bridges, water systems, broad band, etc., with a plan to continue building communities. This allows local municipal government to get the much needed driven community projects completed on time and on budget.
How would your party bring down hydro prices?
When I come home, I want to know that I can flip a switch and have the lights come on, that my food and water is safe, and, that I have clean air to breathe. All are part of a provincial power program that addresses the long term needs of our energy system that many previous governments have not completely addressed. The Liberals have started to address the issues of investments and understand the need to have programs such as the Fair Hydro Plan that has made energy bills 25% lower on average for families, small businesses, farms and low income families. It addresses the need to bring down the cost of electricity. I will fight for those who are now paying less on average than many other communities in similar jurisdictions who have faced long term lack of investments in the upgrading and modernizing power systems. This program, as with the others the Liberals have introduced are at risk. This is why I am fighting for CARE over CUTS. I am fighting for the residents of Elgin-Middlesex-London and will be your advocate at Queen’s Park with a needed voice with a new perspective. It matters who you vote for in this election.
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