The reign of the Harper government has collapsed. A massive Liberal wave washed across Canada, resulting in the first Liberal Party majority since the 1990s under the tutelage of Jean Chretien. But what does it mean for The Fur-Bearers – our campaigns, goals, and hopes? And more importantly, what does it mean for the animals?
Right off the top we must address the Christmas card – the Trudeau family wrapped up coyote fur, something Justin defended vigorously at the time. This alone ensures that the newly formed Liberal government will not reach out to animal advocates and suddenly shift the direction of welfare, environment, or related policy.
That being said, one of the promises made by the Liberal Party is something we can grab onto as hope for the future: electoral reform. The current first-past-the-post system is what led to the last Conservative Party of Canada majority, despite only having support of 39 per cent of voters. Proportional representation – in whatever form it may ultimately take – will mean greater debate in parliament, more work at compromise between members and parties, and more opportunity for organizations like The Fur-Bearers to present serious issues to our government.
The Liberal platform also contained a promise of more free votes – meaning that members can vote to represent their constituents' wishes, as opposed to the party's agenda.
The end of the election also means we can expect the details on the future digital petition platform that was promised earlier this year, which could potentially change the way petitioning and the public is consulted in the country.
The Fur-Bearers will be very busy in the coming weeks, setting up meetings with newly elected (and re-elected) Members of Parliament across the country. We will also be closely watching the formation of the new cabinet and shadow cabinet to determine how these appointments may influence policy and campaigns.
Tomorrow (October 20, 2015), we will look at the full results and report on the candidates who made the animal-friendly candidate lists as proposed by IFAW and Humane Voters Canada.
Thank you to every single supporter and member who went out and voted in this election.
Work like our growing Living With Wildlife campaign is only possible with the support of monthly donors. Please consider become a monthly donor – for as little as $5 a month – and help us create a Canada that is truly humane.