Dufferin Board of Trade to host federal election debate Sept. 8

September 3, 2021   ·   0 Comments

By Paula Brown, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Local federal election candidates will square off in an upcoming debate hosted by the Dufferin Board of Trade (DBOT), as they vie for the position of Dufferin-Caledon MP.

The debate, which is in partnership with the Dufferin Federation of Agriculture and the Canadian Federation of University Women (CFUW) Orangeville & District, is scheduled to be a two-hour event broadcasted and streamed lived on Sept. 8 at 7 p.m.

The debate will be moderated by DBOT treasurer Doug Harkness, and will address questions brought forward by the community.

“Our main goal is to help local businesses thrive and one of the ways in which we help them thrive is through advocacy. We act as the voice of businesses in Dufferin County and bring concerns of our local businesses to those in power whether it be municipal, provincial, or federal leaders,” said Diana Morris, executive director of DBOT.

“We find it important to ensure that the needs of the business community are front and centre during an election and we also find it important that we give the candidates the platform that business leaders, and members of the general public can hear from the candidates; and make informed decision before they vote.”

“Our community needs to vote, it is imperative that everyone gets out and votes, and it makes sense to vote educated. To know the local candidates, to know their policies, their platforms, and their views so that you can vote for whom you truly believe will do the best representing our riding at the federal government.”

The DBOT hosting an election debate has been a long standing tradition in the community, and in previous years they’ve been held at local high schools in Orangeville and Shelburne, with an attendance of around 300 people.

Morris said given the social distancing restrictions, the local non-profit made the switch to a fully online debate.

As part of their goal of informing residents on the various candidates, DBOT is also sharing completed bios of each candidate on their website and will also have a meet and great booth for the general public at the Think Local Market at Fiddle Park in Shelburne on Sept. 14.

Voters will take to the polls for Canada’s 44th federal election on Sept. 20. The federal election comes after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (Liberal) met with Gov. Gen. Mary Simon in mid-August, to request the dissolving of Parliament, which was approved. Canada’s next federal election was originally dated for October 2023.

Candidates vying for Dufferin-Caledon MP include: Conservative MP Kyle Seeback, Liberal Lisa Post, Green Party’s Jenni Le Forestier, and People’s Party of Canada’s Anthony Zambito.

Morris said Seeback, Post, and Le Forestier have confirmed attendance at the debate.

Questions asked during the debate will be those submitted by the general public, and will be pre-sorted to ensure a multitude of topics are covered. The deadline to submit a question is Monday Sept. 6.

The election debate will take place on Sept. 8 at 7 p.m., with a link provided shortly before the event for those streaming.

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