Media advisory - Anti-racism forum to explore importance of elections, electoral reform for racialized communities

    TORONTO, Sept. 13 /CNW Telbec/ - Political engagement and Toronto area
candidates in the October 10 provincial election will be the focus of an
anti-racism forum presented by the Rainbow Committee of the Canadian Union of
Public Employees (CUPE) Ontario this Saturday in Toronto.
    York West NDP candidate Antoni Shelton, a former Executive Director of
the Urban Alliance on Race Relations and current Executive Assistant at CUPE
Ontario, will talk to participants about what the October 10 referendum on
electoral reform and Mixed Member Proportional (MMP) mean to racialized
workers and communities. Shelton is waging a hard fight to win the York West
seat, which is home to the Jane-Finch community where he grew up.
    Shelton will be joined in the forum's afternoon session by provincial
candidates including Mohamed Boudjenane (Etobicoke North), Yvette Blackburn
(Scarborough-Agincourt), Shalia Kibria (Mississauga-Erindale) who is also a
CUPE candidate, and others. In the morning session, Yvonne Bobb-a candidate in
previous elections-will be part of a panel discussion on what it takes to
succeed in politics and advance the equity agenda. Panelists include
June Veekcock, who has a long history with the Canadian Coalition of Black
Trade Unionists, and Winnie Ng on the politics of the broader labour movement
and Asian communities.

    Date:      Saturday, September 15, 2007

    Location:  CUPE Local 4400 office
               1482 Bathurst Street (north of Bathurst & St. Clair,
               west side)

    Morning:   10:00 - 12:00 p.m. Panel discussion

    Afternoon: 1:15 - 2:00 p.m. Antoni Shelton, candidates

    "It is no longer acceptable that the Ontario Legislature is desperately
lacking in representation from racialized Members of Parliament," says
Yolanda McClean, Chair of CUPE Ontario's Rainbow Committee. "The best way that
our communities can build power and bring about the support, attention and
change that's needed to make them stronger, is to work on the campaigns of
equality candidates and vote for MMP."
    "CUPE Ontario is proud to host this forum as part of our extensive
campaign to get voters engaged in the October 10 election," adds Fred Hahn,
CUPE Ontario Secretary-Treasurer.

For further information:

For further information: Valerie Dugale, CUPE Communications, (647)
225-3685; Yolanda McClean, Chair, CUPE Ontario's Rainbow Committee,  (416)
885-6395; Fred Hahn, CUPE Ontario Secretary-Treasurer, (416) 540-3979

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Canadian Union of Public Employees - Ontario Regional Office

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