Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Candidates Are Already Following Kennedy

Gerard Kennedy on July 25th issued a release pertaining to the safe injection site; in it he "calls on Harper to continuing funding North America's only site." The news release can be found at: . The importance of the date is important because almost a month later Scott Brison and Ken Dryden have come to the same conclusion.

In today's Globe and Mail, an article titled "Dryden, Brison back injection site" by Lillian Au, tells of Brison and Dryden urging Harper to continue to allow the safe injection site, known as Insite to operate. Dryden spouting that "These are people who are in tough shape, have harmed themselves, oftentimes have done harm to others, and the key is to try to find your best answer....The safe-injection site is part of that best answer." Brison adding "Of course, when there's a critical mass of people that need a safe-injection site, that's a top priority."

This is great, that the Liberal Party is forming a consensus, but what does it say with two of the candidates 'following' another a month later?

In Kennedy's release he passionately states that:
"Insite saves lives and is a Canadian social and medical success story. Of the 336 users who overdosed, the experienced professionals at the site performed life saving interventions and helped provide thousands of users with harm reduction strategies to reduce crime and prevent the spread of disease. This is a program that helps protect and support the weakest part of our society. It is a tangible example of practical compassion - something the Harper government should be doing more of."

Another feature that has been duplicated from the Kennedy campaign is Kennedy's address of proactively pursuing equitable participation of women in the Liberal Party of Canada. A first policy of Gerard's was and is to have a goal of 50% participation of women in the Liberal Party caucus. This policy was introduced back in March at every event Kennedy attended, myself being in attendance to a majority of them. At the time he received some misunderstanding and criticism from notable members of the Dion campaign. Some had thought that he meant a mandatory level of 50%; he actually stated clearly that it was a goal to achieve, to move towards in order to promote the talented women of the Liberal Party into the positions they deserve. Now Ken Dryden has put out his own very similar policy.

I cannot say Dryden did not have this policy in mind earlier but I can say he never made it public until now which seems rather questionable. Ken Dryden's vision statement is:
"Liberal Party of Canada caucus with only 21 female members (or 20%) is unacceptable. We must be committed as a party to increasing substantially the number of women who will run successfully for us. This is about increasing the number of women who will WIN. It is also about us as a party winning elections and forming the government, and governing better." I don't doubt that it is Ken Dryden's statement, but I do know however that it is Kennedy's vision.


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