Provincial election will have impact on students

Coming off the heels of a municipal election one year ago and a hotly-contested federal election just last spring, it would be easy to participate in this fall’s provincial contest.

It is absolutely vital, therefore, that students tune into this election. With the
McGuinty Liberals seeking a third-straight term, it is up to you to consider whether the accomplishments made in the last eight years warrant re-election or if it’s time for a new Ontario government. The provincial legislature is responsible for issues that matter to you — health care, natural resources, the environment, welfare and education — things you deal with on a daily basis. Post-secondary education is also a major responsibility for the provincial government.

The McGuinty government has made major investments in education that are not just promises made in a party platform but that have materialized with tangible commitments.

Just last June, the Liberals announced a $72.6 million investment in Wilfrid Laurier University, funds earmarked for the new Global Innovation Exchange building to be constructed in place of the St. Michael’s building.
In this upcoming election, McGuinty has promised a 30 per cent tuition cut for post-secondary students. Hudak’s Progressive Conservatives have announced that they will eliminate scholarships for foreign students while investing in 60,000 new post-secondary spaces. The Ontario New Democrats have not yet unveiled their post-secondary strategy but will be announcing education policy in the “coming days.”

In the next few weeks, take a short break from your readings, your social life and your extracurriculars to review the party platforms and get to know your local candidates. It is an honour, a privilege and a humbling responsibility to select your government representatives.

As young Canadians, too often the needs of our generation are pushed back because we characteristically demonstrate a lack of interest in elections and politics in general. Yet, the recent federal election showed that nothing in politics is impossible — no one would have predicted a NDP opposition in the first weeks of the campaign. Your vote matters and you should cast it wisely.

—The Cord Editorial Board