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Write a letter to the editor to include Greens in the debates!

Write a letter to the editor to include Greens in the debates!

The Ontario broadcast consortium - CBC, CTV, Global, TVO, CPAC, and CHCH - has excluded the Green Party of Ontario from participating in the televised debates, including the final province-wide debate on May 27. It's not too late to change their minds, but we must act now!

Write a letter to the editor of your local paper using this easy-to-use tool! If enough letters appear in newspapers across Ontario, we'll send a loud message to the media that we expect more in our democracy! 

Background

The fact that an unaccountable media consortium is denying voters the opportunity to hear the ...

The Ontario broadcast consortium - CBC, CTV, Global, TVO, CPAC, and CHCH - has excluded the Green Party of Ontario from participating in the televised debates, including the final province-wide debate on May 27. It's not too late to change their minds, but we must act now!

Write a letter to the editor of your local paper using this easy-to-use tool! If enough letters appear in newspapers across Ontario, we'll send a loud message to the media that we expect more in our democracy! 

Background

The fact that an unaccountable media consortium is denying voters the opportunity to hear the ideas that Ontario's fourth party has to put forward should be of concern to all voters.

Both Andrea Horwath and Kathleen Wynne have expressed public support for having the Greens included in the debates.

Fair Vote Canada supports having the Greens in the televised debates not just because it's fair, but because their inclusion is directly related to making progress towards acheiving proportional representation for everyone.

Consider this:

a) In Ontario, the Greens have the strongest position on proportional representation. 

Green Party leader Mike Schreiner is on record stating he would make proportional representation a condition of supporting a minority government.  In Ontario, should the Green Party hold the balance of power, their strong position on PR would help drive the issue forward. This can happen - a situation just like this occurred in BC last year.

b) Having Mike Schreiner in the debates increases the chances that proportional representation will get more air time during the debate.

With two out of the four parties at the table supporting PR, the odds are better that proportional representation will come up at least once - and be harder for the other parties to ignore. After 4 years of a 38% majority government in Ontario, the real risk of another one of a different stripe, and the heightened awareness of proportional representation federally, we need more voices to get proportional representation on the radar in Ontario. 

c) Research shows that proportional representation most often follows the emergence of a diverse, multi-party system.

Multi-party systems aren't the result of proportional representation - they often come first.

Research shows that the higher the “effective number of parties” a country has – a term which classifies the number of parties in a legislature by their effective power – the higher the probability that country will switch to proportional representation. In fact, the likelihood that a country will switch to a proportional system rises to 61% when a country reaches 4 effective parties.

A few more good reasons to include the Greens in the televised debates: 

  • Greens have enough support to receive a per vote subsidy- funded by Ontario citizens - a recognition that they represent enough Ontarians that its in everyone's interest for their ideas to be heard
  • Greens have acheived as high as 8% of the vote 
  • Greens ran a full slate of candidates in the last three provincial elections and
  • Greens have been included in debates in BC and federally - without having won a first seat

It's not about the Green Party or any party in particular - it's about a better democracy.

A democracy where voters learn they have more choices.

A democracy where the media allows voters to hear diverse solutions to policy issues that affect all of us. 

A democracy that moves us along the path to a fair electoral system where no matter what party we vote for or where we live, our votes translate into seats and we can elect the representation we want. 

As Martin Regg Cohn noted in the Star this week:

For too long, the so-called network consortium has consorted behind closed doors to arrange ad hoc debates to its own tastes, instead of displaying transparency and fidelity to democracy. Ontarians deserve an open discussion about election debates, so that voters are free to make their own choices — without TV networks deciding on their behalf who is and isn’t worth considering.

It's not late too late for the Broadcast Consortium to reconsider - but they need to feel the public pressure from all of us - not just the Greens. 

Please write a letter to your newspaper today.

 

 

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Write a letter to the editor

Write a letter to the editor of an Ontario newspaper asking that the Greens be included in the televised debates. Find your newspaper by typing the name. Don't forget to include your address and phone number at the bottom of the letter so the newspaper can contact you if they would like to print it!

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Make sure to put your address and telephone number at the bottom of the letter or the newspaper will not contact you.

Write in your own words, from your perspective.

Most newspapers don't accept letters more than 200 words - shorter can be more effective. Please include your full name, address and phone number so the newspaper can contact you if they wish to print your letter. A few suggested points:

 

  • We expect our media to give Ontarians the opportunity to hear from the leaders of all four major parties on the ballot
  • Greens have enough support to receive a per vote subsidy- funded by Ontario citizens - a recognition that they represent enough Ontarians that its in everyone's interest for their ideas to be heard
  • Greens have acheived as high as 8% of the vote 
  • Greens ran a full slate of candidates in the last three provincial elections and
  • Greens have been included in debates in BC and federally - without having won a first seat
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