Agnieszka Mlynarz: Why I Want to be Your MPP

June 1st, 2018

Dear Guelph,

On June 7, you have an important decision to make, so I thought I would tell you why I want to be your next MPP.

I came to Canada as an infant refugee from Germany after the fall of the Berlin Wall. My parents instilled in me a passion for social justice and labour rights and taught me lessons about caring for others.

One of the reasons that I became a New Democrat is that I lived through the crisis in education that the Tories created during their eight years in government, and it wasn’t pretty. An NDP government will invest $16 billion to address the backlog of repairs that are needed in our schools and overhaul the education funding formula. We’ll end the faulty and stressful EQAO testing and put that money back in to our kids’ classrooms.

I learned a lot in university, but I also learned about the financial struggles that students face. I learned about having to make difficult choices like choosing between textbooks or groceries. Under our plan, every student who qualifies for OSAP will get a non-repayable grant instead of a loan, and we will retroactively forgive all interest for everyone currently carrying provincial student loan debts.

Like so many young people today, I have experienced the challenges of precarious work at an assembly line for a company manufacturing solar panels and as a farmhand. But struggling with temporary contract work is about more than just ”waiting my turn” for a job suited to my education. It’s about having to decide whether or not I can afford going to the dentist. Or whether I can afford to fill a prescription. New Democrats will ensure that everyone has access to free dental care and prescription care so that people don’t have to make choices which endanger their health.

Guelph has some of the best water in Ontario, and we need to protect it as a public trust. Andrea Horwath and the NDP will establish an Ontario Water Strategy that will prioritize planning for our water needs now and for future generations based on the public interest and sustainable public access to water.

I became a New Democrat because I’ve experienced first-hand the failures of Conservative and the Liberal governments to make life better for Ontarians. I’ve seen our education system be stretched to the limit, wait times at Guelph General Hospital escalate, hydro rates skyrocket and a mountain of broken promises pile up to make life fair for Indigenous people and folks in the LGBTQQIP2SAA communities. I’m tired of switching between governments that only offer bad and worse.

If you elect me as your MPP on June 7, I will be part of a team that will bring change for the better to Ontario. I have life experiences and a perspective that my opponents do not have. I’m running for office because I want to see more of my generation represented in politics. It’s one thing to tell young people to vote; it’s an entirely different thing to listen to their voice. As your MPP, I will use my passion and energy to fight for Guelph’s interests as part of Andrea Horwath’s NDP team.