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Goodbye, Harper! Council of Canadians set to “meet” Harper in Montreal after election call

Montreal ─ With Prime Minister Stephen Harper calling a federal election today, the Council of Canadians and others will be on hand to say “goodbye” to Harper and his conservative legacy at a planned rally in Montreal.

Together with other groups, the Council will be holding a peaceful, upbeat rally outside the expected meeting place for the Conservative rally in Mount Royal riding, which Stephen Harper is expected to attend.

The Council of Canadians is an independent social justice organization that has been urging people to vote in this election and shift the political agenda with its Go Vote 2015 campaign.

Council of Canadians National Chairperson Maude Barlow is calling on Canadians to send the federal Tories packing. Her report, Broken Covenant: How Stephen Harper Set out to Silence Dissent and Curtail Democratic Participation, outlines the damage done to numerous aspects of Canada’s democracy, social programs, health care and environment under Harper’s watch.

“After nine years of job losses, health care privatization, falling wages, environmental neglect and austerity, it's time for change,” Barlow said. “But that will only happen if we get out and vote for it. Though we are upset about the cynicism shown in this early election call to capitalize on quirks in spending rules, we should seize this opportunity to move heaven and earth, as citizens, to define what we want in the next government.”

The Council has been a vocal critic of Harper on issues including water protection, hydraulic fracking, pipelines, robocalls, the Fair Elections Act, health care, Revenue Canada audits of social movements and international trade proposals including the Trans-Pacific Partnership and the Canadian-EU Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement.

“Time’s up: we’ve seen enough,” says Sujata Dey, Trade Campaigner for the Council of Canadians, who will be attending the rally with the Montreal chapter. “This has been an attack on every issue that anyone in the social justice movement could possibly care about. But it is not enough to be angry. There is a real need to get people out and to seize this moment.  This is a watershed election for all of us.”

Where: YM-YWHA Montreal Jewish Community Centre, 5400 Westbury Avenue, Montréal

Map: http://bit.ly/1fQtah6

When: 5 pm

Music by Mon Doux Saigneur

For more information on the Council of Canadians’ campaign: http://canadians.org/democracy

Press contact: Marlo Turner Ritchie. Cell: 514 482-4435