NEWS: NDP launches national campaign to expose SPP

As Harper meets behind closed doors, the NDP holds public forums to raise awareness

OTTAWA – Today, the NDP is launching a national campaign to halt further implementation of the so-called Security and Prosperity Partnership (SPP) agenda. The launch will take place at a public forum hosted by NDP MP Paul Dewar (Ottawa-Centre) and will feature leading opponents of the SPP: Rick Arnold, coordinator of Common Frontiers, Gustavo Iruegas, minister of International Relations for the Legitimate Government of Mexico, Anne Wright, former U.S. Army colonel and anti-war activist, and NDP International Trade critic Peter Julian (Burnaby-New Westminster).

“Harper is fast tracking the complete sellout of our sovereignty. We’ve seen this happen with the softwood sellout and the ongoing campaign of privatization of our public services and policies. Like the Liberals before him, Harper is ignoring the will of Parliament and excluding Canadians from the decision-making process. The Conservatives must conduct a transparent and accountable public debate of the SPP process. I am appealing to all Canadians to join the NDP in this fight,” noted NDP Leader Jack Layton.

The NDP has denounced the SPP agenda and process as being anti-democratic and has been fighting it in Parliament since it was launched in the first place by then-Liberal prime minister Paul Martin in 2005. The SPP infringes on Canada’s sovereignty, and has grave implications for Canada’s ability to develop and implement its own policies and directions in such key areas as human rights, water, energy, food safety, health, security policy and civil rights.

The NDP’s public forum tour will kick off today in Ottawa. Other venues are set for Regina, Sault Ste. Marie, Fredericton, and Halifax. More dates will be announced in the coming days.

The campaign will focus on helping inform Canadians about the realities of the SPP agenda and its serious implications for Canada.

“The NDP is working alongside civil society groups and labour unions to increase pressure on the Harper government to stop SPP implementation until there is a meaningful public consultation and a full debate and a vote in Parliament,” stated Peter Julian.