Indigenous Peoples and Environmentalists moving to support Jagmeet Singh & the NDP

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NorthReport
Indigenous Peoples and Environmentalists moving to support Jagmeet Singh & the NDP

Grand Chief Stewart Phillip endorses NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh

 

by Charlie Smith on October 17th, 2019 at 8:33 PM

 

  • Grand Chief Stewart Phillip says Jagmeet Singh reminds him of former NDP Leader Jack Layton.

 

  • Grand Chief Stewart Phillip says Jagmeet Singh reminds him of former NDP Leader Jack Layton.

In recent years, Grand Chief Stewart Phillip has been the de facto leader of the B.C. environmental movement.

Sometimes called the People's Chief, the president of the Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs and his wife Joan have been at the forefront of pipeline protests.

They've been regular visitors to the Watch House on Burnaby Mountain, which was created by Tsleil-Waututh Nation members as a permanent visible reminder of their opposition to the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion.

And the Phillips been championing human rights causes for decades.

It’s ‘Joan and Stewart’,” Phillip told the Straight last year. “We’ve been in the trenches since the ’70s.”

So their hearty endorsement of NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh will carry weight with Indigenous and environmentally inclined voters in Canada's westernmost province.

"I believe he's a visionary leader and he's an amazing human being," Phillip says in a videotaped message. (See below.)

Joan Phillip has been so impressed by Singh that she's running as the NDP candidate in Central Okanagan–Similkameen-Nicola. 

"I'm just so proud to be part of a team that's on the way up," Joan says in the video.

 

Her husband points out that a fundamental responsibility of leadership is to be able to inspire people.

"We need somebody that is authentic. Somebody that's real, somebody that cares. And that person is Jagmeet Singh," Phillip says.

At another point, he says: "Absolutely everyone is talking about this man, Jagmeet Singh... The last time we had a leader of that magnitude was Jack Layton. I think that with Jagmeet surging, there could be surprises on election night."

Globalnews.ca✔@globalnews

When asked if he was just writing a "blank cheque" for problems faced by Indigenous communities, NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh asked if the same question would be raised if Toronto or Vancouver had a clean drinking water problem.

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https://www.straight.com/news/1315496/video-grand-chief-stewart-phillip-endorses-ndp-leader-jagmeet-singh

NorthReport
lagatta4

Not to mention Montréal! We had a serious problem with a water main here providing clean water to 1,200,000 people. I haven't heard the whole backstory, but there were several years of corruption here that led to neglect of much crucial infrastructure - I'll try to find out more about this.

NorthReport

Here's how the NDP under Jagmeet Singh has tried to outflank the Greens on environmental issues in B.C.

 

  • NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh boosted his environmental street cred when former MP Svend Robinson was nominated to carry the party banner in North Burnaby–Seymour.

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  • NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh boosted his environmental street cred when former MP Svend Robinson was nominated to carry the party banner in North Burnaby–Seymour.GURPREET SINGH

Last May, NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh suffered a devastating defeat.

His party lost the Nanaimo-Ladysmith by-election to the Green candidate Paul Manly, who ran hard against the B.C. NDP government's environmental record.

In particular, Manly's campaign focused on the John Horgan government's support for the proposed carbon-spewing LNG Canada plant near Kitimat and the Indigenous-rights-trampling and farmland-destroying Site C dam in northeastern B.C. 

Manly, the son of a former NDP MP, won easily.

Nanaimo-Ladysmith should have been a safe NDP seat, given the region's decades of labour history and Nanaimo's role as the hub city for Vancouver Island north of Duncan.

In the wake of this defeat, it was clear that the federal NDP needed to act quickly to blunt the Greens before the general election in the fall.

So what did the party do?

It lined up a cast of environmental heavyweights.

Grand Chief Stewart Phillip's wife Joan was nominated in the B.C. Interior. The Phillips' friend, Chief Bob Chamberlin, is running again in Nanaimo-Ladysmith.

Chamberlin is a high-profile advocate for moving fish farms away from wild salmon migratory routes.

A long-time champion of environmental causes, Svend Robinson, was nominated in Burnaby North–Seymour. He was endorsed by David Suzuki.

And in Vancouver Granville, where environmental issues are particularly important, the NDP nominated young climate activist Yvonne Hanson, who participates in Extinction Rebellion protests.

To further strengthen its environmental and Indigenous connections, the party settled on left-wing Métis lawyer Breen Ouellette in Vancouver Centre over far better known trans activist Morgane Oger and actor, comedian, and director David C. Jones.

And a well-known environmentalist Stephen Crozier was nominated in South Surrey–White Rock, where the party doesn't have a chance.

The NDP made similar moves in other provinces. Éric Ferland, executive director of Foire Écosphère, was nominated in Longueuil-Saint-Hubert after the former NDP MP said he was running for the Greens in 2019.  Ferland is a former leader of the Quebec Greens.

Paul Manly won a landslide victory in Nanaimo-Ladysmith after he and Green Leader Elizabeth May zeroed in on the provincial NDP goverrnment's record on environmental issues.

Paul Manly won a landslide victory in Nanaimo-Ladysmith after he and Green Leader Elizabeth May zeroed in on the provincial NDP goverrnment's record on environmental issues.

The NDP already has environmentally minded B.C. incumbents like bird researcher Richard Cannnings in South Okanagan–West Kootenay, Gord Johns in Courtenay–Alberni, and Peter Julian in Burnaby–New Westminster.

Julian even went on tour in the campaign to tout the NDP's Green New Deal, emphasizing that it would respect agreements and treaties with Indigenous peoples.

The inclusion of Robinson, Hanson, Ouellette, Crozier, Chamberlin, and others on the slate has only strengthened the NDP's green cred in the wake of the by-election loss.

The federal party has also been helped by provincial New Democrats keeping their distance from the federal campaign. NDP-supporting unions have also kept a low profile.

All of this has created room for Jagmeet Singh and the federal party to rebrand themselves as fighters for the environment.

Keep in mind that the NDP's platform proposals would reduce carbon dioxide equivalent emissions to just over 600 megatonnes by 2030.

The Greens' more aggressive platform calls for reductions to below 450 megatonnes, according to a CBC article by Inayat Singh and Andreas Wesley. That's under the target of 511 megatonnes to meet Canada's commitments under the Paris Agreement (30 percent below 2005 emission levels).

Writing in the Straight, science journalist Ziya Tong also found that the Green platform went the furthest in reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

But the NDP is now back in the game on environmental issues by recruiting so many trusted voices to its side.

On Election Day, they'll find out if that's been sufficient to blunt the Green challenge in British Columbia.

https://www.straight.com/news/1315591/heres-how-ndp-under-jagmeet-singh-has-tried-outflank-greens-environmental-issues-bc

NDPP

Perhaps 'the People's Chief' should consider the contradictions arising out of urging recognition of Indigenous sovereignty and unceded lands while simultaneously aligning himself with a settler political party of a continuing illegal and genocidal occupation by Canada.

FNs: Don't Vote For Canada!

http://rabble.ca/babble/election-2015/fns-dont-vote-canada

NorthReport

I watched that presser this morning and I call bullshit on this right-wing corporate media headline as Singh did not say that!

Singh suggests he could use Trans Mountain as bargaining chip if NDP plays minority kingmaker

https://globalnews.ca/news/6050096/jagmeet-singh-trans-mountain-cancellation/

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

This endorsement of Bob Chamberlain is monstrous in environmental circles in BC and could be significant in a tight race.

 

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

NorthReport wrote:

I watched that presser this morning and I call bullshit on this right-wing corporate media headline as Singh did not say that!

Singh suggests he could use Trans Mountain as bargaining chip if NDP plays minority kingmaker

https://globalnews.ca/news/6050096/jagmeet-singh-trans-mountain-cancellation/

It's not as though an FN electoral boycott in that riding would serve any purpose. Nanaimo-Ladysmith is only 9.6% FN/Aboriginal/Indigenous.