Canada election 2015: Meet your Kitchener Conestoga candidates
Conservative, Liberal, NDP and Green candidates participate in live panel
In the run-up to the election on October 19, CBC Kitchener-Waterloo will be hosting the candidates in all of Waterloo Region's five ridings for panel discussions on issues affecting the community.
Thursday we heard from the Conservative, NDP, Liberal and Green candidates in Kitchener Conestoga in our panel discussion on CBC Radio's The Morning Edition with host Craig Norris.
Harold Albrecht - Conservative
"Locally our government has renewed our post-secondary infrastructure institutions, invested in economic engines like Communitech Hub and helped our farmers diversify their products and find new markets," said Harold Albrecht on CBC Radio'sThe Morning Edition with Craig Norris.
Albrecht said the Conservatives want to invest in research and development projects to keep the farming industry innovative and competitive, with a focus on food security.
"Food and food processing is the second largest industry in our country and it's important that we recognize that."
Albrecht said the main issues that concern him are supports for families, balancing the budget and keeping Canadians safe at home and abroad.
James Villeneuve - NDP
"As a construction worker and president of my local union, I see the loss of manufacturing in our area affects all levels of the economy," said James Villeneuve during the panel discussion.
"It affects more than just the people who have lost their jobs."
That's why, Villeneuve said, NDP initiatives like the innovation tax credit for small and medium businesses are vital to Kitchener Conestoga residents.
Villeneuve also cited the NDP's food strategy that he said would assist farmers, and said it would be more effective than the subsidies currently offered to farmers.
Tim Louis - Liberal
"Kitchener Conestoga, out of all the ridings, is really diverse. We're really rural and urban at the same time," said Tim Louis during the panel discussion.
"The families I speak to, they're concerned just like everyone, about jobs and infrastructure and healthcare ... but also for farmland protection and sustainability."
Louis said the Liberals are in the best position to fit the needs of the riding, with its plan to invest in infrastructure and the environment.
"We're offering a strong platform for change that will help families," Louis said.
Bob Jonkman - Green
"As a rural riding, the farmers generally tend to have a green outlook already," Bob Jonkman said during the panel.
"These people are already thinking green thoughts and practicing green practices, so I'm finding that there is a lot of sympathy toward the Green vote in the rural areas already."
Jonkman said the Green Party would bring open and transparent government to Ottawa, putting an emphasis on sustainability, be that in farming, manufacturing or the energy sector.
"I don't feel I have been well represented by my government, so this is why I'm running for the Green Party now, to make that sort of change."