Election Campaign Day 31: Leaders Talk Climate, Child Care, Vaccine Choice and Cheaper Cellphone Fees

By Isaac Teo
Isaac Teo
Isaac Teo
Isaac is a reporter based in Toronto.
September 14, 2021 Updated: September 15, 2021

With less than a week left before election day, party leaders continued to promote their platforms on the campaign trail on Sept. 14. From the Liberals’ climate policies to the Tories’ childcare promises and an NDP plan for cheaper cell phone and internet services, here is a roundup of the top campaign announcements of the day. 

Liberals

At a campaign stop in Richmond, B.C. on Sept. 14, Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau reiterated the party’s environmental policies including banning single-use plastics and continuing to put a price on pollution across Canada.

Trudeau also defended himself in relation to media reports his book was republished by a Chinese-state-owned publishing house in 2016, after he became Prime Minister. 

In response to a reporter’s question whether he had sought approval from the federal ethics commissioner before his memoir was published in China at a time when he was seeking a free trade deal and extradition treaty with the country, Trudeau said he played no role in the deal.

 “All the handling of the international editions of my book was done entirely by the publisher,” he said.

“All of the profits from that book go to the Canadian Red Cross,” he continued. “I don’t see a single penny and I have nothing to do with where it gets translated or sold.”

When pressed whether that meant Trudeau was indeed cleared by the federal ethics commissioner, Trudeau responded that the commissioner “has cleared all my sources of income, many times.”

According to the Globe, Trudeau’s publisher HarperCollins struck a deal with Yilin Press of Nanjing, China, which is owned by Jiangsu Phoenix Publishing and Media, a state-owned enterprise that takes orders from the propaganda department of the Jiangsu provincial Communist Party committee, to republish Trudeau’s 2014 memoir “Common Ground” in Chinese under the title ‘The Legend Continues.”

Conservatives 

Conservative Party Leader Erin O’Toole pledged to increase child care affordability in an announcement in Russell, Ontario on Sept. 14.

If elected, O’Toole will convert the Child Care Expense deduction into a refundable tax credit that will cover up to 75 percent of eligible child care expenses for lower-income families. 

“We will leave it up to parents to decide what form of child care works best for them instead of only helping some families,” he said in a video posted on Twitter the same day. 

NDP

NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh promised to cap cellphone and internet fees while campaigning in Toronto on Sept. 14.

The NDP plan includes mandating that telecommunications companies provide unlimited wireless data options at lower rates and remove data caps for broadband internet. 

The plan would also introduce a Telecom Consumers’ Bill of Rights to “protect Canadians from unfair wireless and internet sales and services practices,” and “put an end to gouging for good.”

People’s Party 

During a campaign stop in Fort McMurray, Alberta on Sept. 13, PPC Leader Maxime Bernier told attendees that his party has been wrongly portrayed as “anti-vaccine” by media outlets.

“We respect everybody, and the mainstream media, they were quick to say that ‘Oh the PPC, they’re anti-vaccine, anti-mask, anti-everything,’” he said. 

“No. We are for freedom, so we are for freedom of choice. Everyone must … decide if they want to have the vaccine or not.” 

Bernier also posted on Twitter the same day that his party “will oppose vaccine passports, and other authoritarian measures imposed by provinces.”

Green Party

Green Party Leader Annamie Paul held a press conference with local candidates in Charlottetown, PEI on Sept. 14.

She championed the successful legislation the Greens initiated in PEI through collaboration across party lines, including the Climate Leadership Act and the Poverty Elimination Strategy Act, as part of the party’s “ground-breaking” accomplishments. 

Paul also spoke about the need for cross-party cooperation and collaboration to address the climate change policies her party is advocating. 

Isaac Teo
Isaac Teo
Isaac is a reporter based in Toronto.