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As I said in Part 1 of this special look back 2014 has been an incredible and successful year for us in Brantford-Brant.

2015 will be an extra-special year. We’ll have an election, and people are ready for change. Everywhere I go, I talk to people who are eager to make that change happen.

Every morning this past week I have woken up to e-mails from people contributing to the 2015 campaign and doing so before 2014 is over so they can get up to 75% back in tax credits when they do their taxes in the New Year.

This has a huge impact on helping us get out positive message out to the Brantford-Brant community and will help us run the best federal campaign we have ever seen locally.

If you want to support the work we do LOCALLY and get back up to 75% of your donation on your upcoming taxes click the link here: https://secure.ndp.ca/riding13/index.php?riding=35013&language=e

The work of 2015 will be built on a very solid foundation of efforts over the last several years.  Here are some more examples from 2014 as we list the second half of our top 10 local initiatives of the year:

 

6. Candidate Search and Nomination Meeting Prep.

We’ve spent 2014 doing our due diligence around issues such as an inclusive candidate search process.  We’ve planned a proper nomination meeting because we believe in the importance of he local party voice over the central party office. We need your help to make it a success. Please come out to Rossini Lodge on January 20th so we can nominate a candidate for 2015’s federal election..  Click HERE for more details on that event.  We’ve also put together an election planning committee filled with talented local people and voices who know how to organize in Brantford-Brant so that we can hit the ground running minutes after the candidacy is made official.  We are ready and so is the community for positive, organized change that puts our community first. In 2014 while there was so much we we’re doing out in the community it was local volunteers who also made sure our t’s are crossed and our i’s are dotted behind the scenes to make sure things go smoothly and above the board.

 

7. Listening at your doors and in the community.

5000 doors.  That’s how many I have been at personally this year – there are many others on the local team who have been as well spreading a positive message on a variety of issues while also listening to the vast concerns of the riding.  This is unheard of in a non-election year. On top of that we’re training volunteers to be ready when the election is called.  Add to that countless non-partisan community events and initiatives we’ve attended, sponsored, had booths at or have been asked to speak at and it becomes clear who has the momentum on the ground.  Being active in the community is the only way to hear what politicians and political organizations need to if they want to make change on the issues at hand.  If you would like to be a part of our volunteer crew please join the e-mail list here: http://visitor.r20.constantcontact.com/manage/optin/ea?v=0010viYvlVaEbiGqGXt_4tovPxT_GtQK7Q8r90Gq0fQSnn1t0BBBRVuJMo3nngnwlwz

 

8.  A National Food Strategy.

No other party has one – and it is a comprehensive piece of the 2015 plan.  In 2014 Brantford-Brant New Democrats got serious about food.  Farmers feed cities to be sure and sustainable agri-business is a key component of the make-up of our riding.  This year Welland MP Malcolm Allan released a food strategy that will help family farms, food security, our economy, our environment and our health care system.  Food is such a key component to all those issues and Brantford-Brant was happy to take part in a series of local consultations to provide input for the strategy that is winning acclaim across the country.  Furthermore our local fight this year for proper GMO labelling has seen a lot of momentum with over 150 local residents joining us in activism on this issue.

 

9. Organizing for our Environment.

Whether it is supporting the County of Brant’s fight against an aggregate pit that puts source water at risk, participating in community clean ups or organizing for the return of federal protection to the Grand River – the local Brantford-Brant NDP continued its strong history of activism on local environmental issues.  We spent Jack Layton’s birthday getting signatures to bring back the Climate Change Accountability Act which was killed in the Senate and improve access to public transit.  Later in the year we also had the pleasure of hosting our Deputy Leader and Environment Critic Megan Leslie for a day of meetings with local students and environmental organizers from across the city and county on these very same issues and many others concerning our environment.  It was heartening and enlightening to meet with so many community members who not only care about these vital issues but put effort into actually protecting our environment for future generations.

 

10. Policy that proposes not just opposes.

Sometimes parties attempt to stay away from taking stands on issues or going on the record with specifics.  Over the last year we’ve been pushing policy back into the spotlight with specific plans around a national childcare plan that would help working families and the economy, a $15 dollar an hour minimum wage for federally regulated industries.  And locally we have been talking straight with voters in long-form editorials, letters, media appearances or speeches on a variety of issues such as partisan mailings, anti-bullying, the issues in our Senate, voter suppression, door-to-door mail delivery, temporary work agencies, food and agriculture policy, human rights, palliative care, veterans affairs, dementia, national pharmacare, harm reduction strategies, crime policy, mental health, foreign affairs and more – you can see some of the best examples of this at brantmarc.tumblr.com.  Be it nationally or locally, love it or hate it, we don’t run from policy – we embrace it and promote it to the best of our abilities.

 

And we hope you see the value in that and consider helping us increase our ability to get the message out there.  Again consider a donation before midnight tonight — December 31st — to help us build on our momentum and win in Brant.  It all helps and you are eligible for a tax rebate for up to 75% your contributions.  $400 will only cost you $100 when you do your taxes, $100 costs you only $25 and likewise a $10 contribution only costs you $2.50 but helps us buy 4 signs for the next election or provide hot coffee for our dedicated volunteers or any one of dozens of resources the local campaign will need.  With your help towards the local campaign – we win in Brantford-Brant.

If you are able to donate for the 2014 tax year please do so locally at https://secure.ndp.ca/riding13/index.php?riding=35013&language=e and if not please consider contacting us to volunteer, take a sign or joining us on January 20th, 2015 for the official start of the campaign at the #ImReady2015 Nomination Meeting Event.

Thank you for an amazing 2014 and best wishes for what is ahead for you and yours in 2015.  Happy New Year Brantford-Brant!