Brantford, ON – Brant Federal NDP Candidate Marc Laferriere has been nominated for the J.S. Woodsworth Award, being presented at Queen’s Park in Toronto on March 21st.
“J.S. Woodsworth is someone I’ve always looked up to and I was surprised and humbled by this nomination,” said Laferriere. “It’s the projects I’ve been lucky enough to be involved with that are worthy of this nomination. That’s where the credit should go.”
The J.S. Woodsworth Award is presented annually in commemoration of the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination. The award is given for an outstanding commitment to eliminating racism and oppression. Woodsworth was an advocate for the working class in Ontario in the early 1900’s, and was the founder of the Co-operative Commonwealth Federation, the forerunner to the New Democratic Party.
Laferriere received the nomination for his work on a multitude of local and national projects. The tipping point for his nomination was his role as a founder of the Brant/Brantford Community Garden Project. The Hazelwood garden in Brantford was the first ever designed as a healing garden between aboriginal and non-aboriginal communities.
Other initiatives that led to the nomination included Laferriere’s involvement with Shannen’s Dream (fairness in education), National Aboriginal Addictions Awareness Week, Brantford’s Mental Health Week, and the LGBT & Allies Task Force, the first Local/Global Peace Festival, his involvement in anti-poverty work and the Seeing Voices Anti-Oppression Community Art Project which Laferriere conceptualized.
“I’d like to take this as an opportunity to thank everyone involved with these various projects and to remind them that communities outside of our own are paying attention to the positive and progressives things we do locally,” said Laferriere. “We need to work together in the spirit of community, partnership and peace. If we keep that in mind it will go a long way to better, more fruitful relationships throughout the riding.”