Dear New Democrat, Welcome to 2018! Best wishes to everyone for a fruitful and healthy year. Are you, like me, finding it hard to believe that we are almost halfway through the first month of the new year? How quickly time passes is, I believe, one of life’s great mysteries. So, let’s seize the opportunity and get involved rather than letting time pass us by.
Our small but mighty Caucus office has started preparing for the House of Assembly that opens again on February 26. We continue to work in our districts on a host of important constituency issues. We continue to collaborate with people and organizations from the non-profit, labour, small business, and academic sectors on initiatives important to the people of this province. We continue to champion our NDP values: to fight for economic, environmental, and social justice equality for all Newfoundlanders and Labradorians.
2018 Leadership Convention
In addition, we are working hard to prepare for our upcoming Leadership Convention to be held in St. John’s April 6-8, 2018. At that time, we’ll discuss and refine policy, debate resolutions presented by our members, as well as elect a new leader.
You now have the details about the process for the nomination of candidates for leader. I encourage you to get involved in the discussion about who would be an excellent person to take over the leadership reins at this crucial time. Who do you see as leader? Is there someone you would like to encourage to run? What are other party members thinking? In April, we will be a year and a half from the next provincial general election. Convention will be the time for us to articulate our vision as we prepare to show Newfoundlanders and Labradorians why we are the party best placed to build a fair, equitable, prosperous, and sustainable province. During convention, we will be discussing many important issues facing the people of the province with emphasis on defining direct actions that we can take to make our ideas for positive change a reality. I encourage you to attend and be part of the visioning and strategizing that will occur at this critically important event.
Federal Convention next month
Another important event being held early this year is the federal convention which takes place in Ottawa Feb. 16-18. Today, January 12, is the last day for the Early Bird Registration. Registering today will save you $50 whichever category you are in. This convention will be the first opportunity for members of the party throughout the country to work with the new leader, Jagmeet Singh, to refine the NDP vision for Canada. What a great way to become directly involved in change, and to become further inspired to work together, in advance of our own related process to be held in our province two months later.
Important moment for the party and province In April we won’t only be electing our new leader – we’ll also be electing our new provincial executive. Our women’s caucus and youth caucus will also be meeting at the convention to provide their unique lens to the issues facing the people of the province. We will be electing representatives from each caucus to our provincial executive committee so they too can help set the direction of our party moving forward. The April convention also marks the beginning of a period of very important election-planning work as we start preparing in earnest for the fall 2019 election. Suffice to say that there are many ways for interested volunteers to become involved with election planning. Clearly, April is an important time for the NL NDP. Most importantly, it is a time where you can decide how you’d like to get more directly involved with our party to make a meaningful difference. This is an important moment in our history as a party and as a province. You can be a part of shaping our future direction and make your voice heard. Coming to the convention could be your first step. Be on the lookout for further communication from the provincial executive about opportunities for involvement. You’ll be hearing much more in the coming weeks. I am encouraged by the new life I am seeing in our party – membership increasing, younger people getting involved, and a growing sense of urgency for change being widely articulated. I look forward to the coming months as we work together for the people of our province.
Lorraine Michael Leader, NL NDP