Jared Dodds, News Reporter
With the federal election fast approaching, Etobicoke North Liberal candidate Kirsty Duncan is deep into her re-election campaign.
The former Minister of Science and Sports and Persons with Disabilities appears in the lead to reclaim her seat with under a week to go.
Duncan first claimed her position in Parliament in 2008 when former Liberal MP Roy Cullen announced he wouldn’t be running for re-election.
She was a professor at the University of Windsor before she got the chance to give back to her community.
“I’ve served this constituency for the last 11 years,” she said. “Our focus is on serving our community, and we go above and beyond, whatever the families need.”
Duncan thinks it is crucial to make sure she is an active member of her constituency, so she does everything she can from working at clothing banks to just talking to the people.
“We knock on doors every few weeks for the last 11 years,” she said. “No one wants someone who shows up every 4 years.”
Duncan is running on the Liberal party platform focused on climate change, stronger gun control and strengthening the middle class.
When asked about Liberal party leader Justin Trudeau, she had nothing but kind things to say about her former seatmate in the House of Commons.
“When he was running for leader people used to come ask me to tell them about him,” Duncan said. “I said on those long votes, some up to 24 hours, what do you think we talked about? The answer was policy.”
She said their focus on policy was about everything from seniors to climate change, but she has a special place in her heart when it comes to caring for students.
“Before I ever ran, I served on the Toronto Foundation for Student Success, which is a breakfast program,” Duncan said. “I’m really excited, in the last budget we’ve [the Liberal Party] have committed to a nation breakfast program.”
“Hungry children can’t learn,” she said.
Duncan said the Liberal party’s goal of a strong middle class and affordability was especially important in Etobicoke North.
“For the last 11 years I’ve advocated for affordability, for making life better for our families,” she said. “We brought in the Canada Child Benefit, it’s helping nine out of 10 families across the country, but here in Etobicoke North it has lifted over 25,000 children out of poverty. That is huge for our community.”
Duncan is preaching a variety of different programs to help establish the middle class, from the first time homebuyer incentive to increasing the Canada Student Grants.
When those final ballots are counted, she hopes she will continue to be able to serve her constituents in what she calls the greatest honor of her life.