Born and raised in Toronto, Linda is committed to fighting for the things her neighbours care about as a member of the Toronto NDP team.
All the income gains of the past thirty years have gone to the top 10 percent, particularly the top 1 percent. Meanwhile, the incomes of everyone else have stagnated or declined.
This stark rise in inequality has produced devastating, far-reaching consequences for our society. It has left millions of Canadians in poverty, reduced opportunities for young people, undermined our democracy and stifled our potential as a country.
Linda and the Toronto NDP team will fight to strengthen minimum wage laws and pensions, and protect public healthcare.
The housing crisis is acute. There are currently more than 87,000 households on the waiting list for subsidized housing in Toronto.
Cuts to social housing have caused a severe shortage of affordable rental units in Toronto Centre, where over half the residents are renters and rents have skyrocketed.
And it's only going to get worse. The Conservatives are cutting another $500 million from social housing, including the elimination of longstanding funding for co-operative housing.
Linda will work with the Toronto NDP team to increase funding for affordable housing and develop a national housing strategy.
Nearly 1.4 million Canadians are unemployed. Yet the Conservative government has gutted the Employment Insurance program over the past year, making it harder and harder for the unemployed to access benefits.
This is a serious problem in the riding, where so many workers have part-time, casual or temporary jobs. They pay into the EI program, but rarely qualify for benefits. In Toronto, only 25 percent of laid-off workers receive benefits, creating real hardship for the rest.
Both the Liberals and the Conservatives have contributed to making the EI system inaccessible. Before the Liberals began their cuts in the 1990s, the system provided benefits to more than more than 70 percent of laid-off Canadians.
Linda will work with the Toronto NDP team to fight for an overhaul of the EI system so that workers can receive badly-needed benefits as well as re-training opportunities.
Education is an important public good, and evidence shows that countries do better when they invest in post-secondary education and reduce barriers to enrolment.
Yet both Liberals and Conservative governments have done the opposite, significantly increasing tuition fees over the past few decades.
Graduates are now burdened with an average of $27,000 in student debt, making this the first Canadian generation to face diminished prospects than their parents.
Linda and the Toronto NDP will fight for increased federal funding to make post-secondary education affordable and protect its central role in our democracy.
The Conservatives have dismantled the environmental review process, stripped the National Energy Board of its regulatory powers, shut down environmental research operations and muzzled scientists.
Canadians are being shut out of key debates over the future of our environment including a proposal that would allow hazardous tar sands oil to move through Toronto.
Linda and the Toronto NDP will work hard to protect our land, air and water not just for today, but for generations to come.