Riding Associations could get more power, and they'd deserve it

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Leadership Wednesday, December 04, 2013 View Count = 2068

Riding Associations could get more power, and they'd deserve it

Riding Associations (or Electoral District Associations as they are formally known) are essentially party offices on the riding level, and one of the best and easiest ways to get politically involved in your community. You may have heard them referred to recently in light of MP Michael Chong’s Reform Act. Among many reforms, this bill would give Riding Associations the exclusive power to choose their local candidates, over which the party leader currently has more control. In addition, a Riding Association could decide not to run a local candidate at all.

Given that most riding associations have an executive committee and members who take care of all sorts of party business such as organizing policy decisions, helping to coordinate campaigns, and actually doing the work to find candidates who will run in each election, they would be very equipped to take on these new responsibilities.

It is then really no wonder so many Riding Association volunteers have been nominated as
Everyday Political Citizens.

Sharon Sommerville, for example is an active director of her riding association as well as being the association’s Outreach committee chair. On top of that she co-chairs Fair Vote Canada’s Waterloo Region,
and plans political events in her riding.

Nominee: Sharon Sommerville 
Riding: Kitchener-Waterloo 
Read more 

Alan Chattaway is the secretary of his local riding association and an organizer extraordinaire.

Nominee: Alan Chattaway
Riding: Fleetwood- Port Kells
Read more

And there’s also Brian Rice, who not only gives his time to his own local riding association, but shares his expertise across Canada at workshops on effective EDA management (he also makes excellent sartorial choices)

Nominee: Brian Rice
Riding: Vancouver East
Read more

When we sat down with Canadians through our Democracy Talks program, we were told political role models were missing. We’re trying to fix this by highlighting Everyday Political Citizens, unsung political heroes such as campaigners, activists, community organizers, and members of local riding associations like Sharon, Alan and Brian who are working with our political systems to make their communities a better place.

Help us today by nominating a young person in your community who strives to make a difference through politics.

More impressive riding association volunteers:
Scott Kehler
Michele Girash
Vincent St. Pierre
Sohaib Wasif
Marc Laferriere

Everyday Political Citizen Project

Do you know a political role model who works through political systems in an effort to make their community a better place? Tell us about them! 

We’re on the hunt for 308 inspiring people—at least one from each federal riding. Check out our interactive map today to see if your riding is represented.

More on our Blog

Under 18 and already political role models

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NEW SAMARA DEMOCRACY REPORT: Review of MPs' websites: Does your MP's website invite engagement?

Everyday Political Citizen: the jury, the prizes and you!

Political Role Models Are Out There (really!)

On the Samara BlBlog logo representing the letter 'o'g