On the evening of November 7, Brock Young Liberals organized and hosted an ‘MP Social’ , welcoming members of Parliament in the Skybar Lounge of Isaac’s Bar and Grill.
All Brock students were welcomed to come and meet with the local Minister of Parliament members; Pam Damoff from Oakville North-Burlington, Chris Bittle from St. Catharines, and Vance Badawey from Niagara Centre.
Students were encouraged to ask questions, participate in casual discussions and be a part of an event that highlighted the importance of two major issues, equality and youth involvement in politics.
“I think it is extremely important for the entire body of students at Brock to meet our elected representatives because it is important for youth to be constantly in communication with government,” said Matt Campbell, President of Brock Young Liberals, “and [also] for our politicians to keep in touch with the needs of University students.”
Although the event was mainly a way for students to socialize with the MPs, the three special guests did speak briefly in front of the crowd.
“Even though I’m not the MP of this area, I really do love Brock,” said Damoff, stating that her son had attended and graduated from Brock. “It’s great to see you all here. It’s especially great to see some young ladies here because one of the things we need [in our government] is more women getting into politics on every level and I hope you consider running [to be a Member of Parliament] and if you don’t succeed the first time, run again!”
“You are our future leaders but quite frankly, you are our current leaders too.” said Badawey, stating that he was impressed with the student turnout and that he was inspired by the young generation that will one day replace the MP’s “I want to say congratulations to everyone for being here,” he stated, “the more you participate, the more that opportunities will come your way and I can pretty much guarantee you that at least one of you will be where we are today in the future.”
Bittle, who recently partook in a public meet and greet with Justin Trudeau in Downtown St. Catharines, said that “we haven’t seen these sort of numbers with the Brock Young Liberals in years so it’s incredible, but we have a great new leader, a great new Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, and we are ready to accomplish whatever comes our way.”
Bittle shared that Trudeau “listens to the right people” and that has encouraged him to reach out to others, such as university students, that can share their thoughts and ideas and be a part of significant discussions. “‘You are the leaders of today’ as Trudeau has said many times,” said Bittle, stating that the government needs students to be part of these conversations.
Campbell said that he could not have been happier with the amount of students that were present, stating that he believes that “this [was] the largest amount of people that have showed up in a long time” to a Brock Young Liberals event. “It was also nice to see student leaders and students from all walks of campus show up to this.”
“By all means, stay involved,” said Badawey to attendees, “because our country depends on you.”
“The Brock Young Liberals are a chapter of the Young Liberals of Canada and the Ontario Young Liberals and represent both the federal and provincial party,” said Campbell.
“Our club’s goal is to engage and inform students the values of the Liberal party, take part in social activities with fellow Young Liberals, discuss liberal policy, host policy events, have visits from MP’s, help with community initiatives and volunteer with local elected officials or by-elections, host debates with the other political party clubs on campus and attend Liberal conventions and young Liberal functions.”