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Federal Green Party candidate chosen for local riding

July 29, 2021   ·   0 Comments

Written By Sam Odrowski

Jenni Le Forestier has been nominated by the Dufferin–Caledon Green Party to run in the next federal election as their official candidate. 

She currently works with several climate and environmental groups across the riding and has a strong grasp on the what’s having a negative impact on the environment locally.

Le Forestier, who is from Belfountain, noted that her love of nature and desire to protect the environment is part of what led her to run under the Green Party banner.

“I have an appreciation for the biosphere… and also just the biodiversity that we have here, so I’m inspired to try and maintain that,” she said. “I’m a mom, I have a child who’s 11. I’ve looked to what her future might be. If you believe in climate change, and I do, then now is time that we have to get really serious and address the changes that need to happen.

“I think the pandemic has really crystallized that for a lot of people – that now we’re really appreciating nature in a way we maybe didn’t before.”

One of the key issues Le Forestier has been focused on is “Stop The 413”, which is an effort to prevent a proposed 400-series highway that cuts through the Greenbelt, productive farmlands, wetlands, and forests. 

Another important item for Le Forestier is stopping the Erin wastewater treatment plant, which has spurred protests due to concerns around its discharge into the West Credit River negatively impacting brook trout.

“That’s really concerning for everyone downstream, where I live and beyond, down to Mississauga,” she said.

Le Forestier told the Free Press, aggregate issues surrounding pits and quarries in Caledon has been another area of focus for her over the past few years. She’s been working with Gravel Watch, which is a coalition of citizen groups, non-government organizations and individuals across Ontario that advocate on matters relating to aggregate resources.

The primary concern right now with respect to the gravel pits and quarries is that extraction is now happening below the water table, since the Aggregate Resource Act was amended by the Ford government last year.

“When you start going below the water table and you also have lots of other development happening around you, the impact can be felt in water quality and quantity and potential dust and noise,” said LeForestier. “There’s also a risk to biodiversity and a risk to endangered species… so it just kind of all snowballs.”

She added that communities of course need gravel, but the way it is extracted needs to be more sustainable, with a focus on rehabilitation and limiting environmental impacts.

“I’d like to see if one pit is opening or expanding, then one should be rehabilitating and closing, so that we’re not constantly amassing these massive amounts of holes in the ground,” said LeForestier.

When looking at larger issues impacting Canada as a whole, she told the Free Press that water security, clean drinking water, equal access to healthcare, clean energy, and creating a liveable wage are all paramount as well.

Le Forestier noted some of her positive attributes that would lend themselves well to the Dufferin–Caledon Member of Parliament position include her ability to negotiate, communicate, listen, and adapt. 

“I’m very cognizant of the focus that it takes to affect change and policy. It’s not something that, you can do quickly, it’s the long game, and I think musicians are very good at that,” said Le Forestier, who’s a classical musician and operates Belfountain Cottage Music. 

“We have a lot of discipline and focus, and it’s one of the skills that you need to have if you’re going to be in the political ring.”

Le Forestier noted an important aspect of the Green Party is its bipartisan approach, encouraging collaboration across party lines to find common solutions that can effect positive change.

“I think that’s the kind of approach we need,” she said. “It’s really about what’s best for the human being, what’s best for our health and security and common goals and how to live better.”

Going forward, Le Forestier says she’s looking forward to campaigning across the many communities that comprise Dufferin–Caledon and developing connections with constituents.

In the weeks ahead, she’s planning on starting to do some community hikes where anyone can join in and chat with her as they walk the region’s trails.

“I’m looking forward to getting out there and talking to people and hearing what their concerns are and getting a sense of, of where they’re at,” said Le Forestier.

Anyone looking to contact Le Forestier directly can send her an email at jenni.leforestier@gpc.ca  and visit dcgreens.ca to learn more about the Dufferin–Caledon Green Party.



         

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