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Green Party Leadership Race Contender: Meryam Haddad

We sent each of the candidates this 23-question questionnaire.

1. Full name:
Meryam Haddad

2. Date of birth:
Jan. 15, 1988

3. Marital status? Children?
It’s complicated. No.

4. Would you describe yourself as religious? If so, what religion/denomination do you subscribe to?
I describe myself as an atheist, but I am born Antiochian Orthodox.

5. Why do you think you’re best placed to be the next Green Party leader?
I am a socialist, an immigrant, a lesbian, and more importantly a millennial, someone who will live to see our extinction if we do not tackle climate change. I have no other choice than to step in and change the path our current politicians have led us down. It affects me directly.

6. What top two problems do you believe the party current faces? And how do you plan to try to overcome them?
A lack of diversity and centralization of governance. We need to advocate what the marginalized communities have been asking for like defunding the RCMP and decolonization, attract talent and support BIPOC candidates in key winnable ridings. We can also decentralize the GPC by having strong regional wings where the members will feel empowered.

“We need to advocate what the marginalized communities have been asking for like defunding the RCMP and decolonization, attract talent and support BIPOC candidates in key winnable ridings.”

7. Why do you think the party failed to win more seats in the last election?
Even though we are the most progressive on most issues, we failed to honour our grassroots values and democratically voted upon policies by having a neo-liberal centrist slogan “Not left, not right, forward together” and were not able to communicate to the population that we are more than a one-issue party. In other words, we were not clear on what we stand for. We also did the mistake to run the last federal campaign from a disconnected office in Ottawa which is another convincing reason for decentralization.

8. What would be your policy priorities if you become the leader?
Building a Green New Deal that leaves no one behind.

9. What public policy issue do you feel is undercovered and deserving of more political and public attention?
Indigenous rights: getting safe housing and clean drinking water to Indigenous communities

10. What makes you happy?
Spending time with the people I love.

11. Tea or coffee? Beer or wine?
Mate! And, currently, wine

12. Favourite thing to do?
Hiking

13. What do you consider your greatest achievement?
The grassroots movement that we have been able to create with this campaign and the overwhelming inspiration coming from the volunteers. #WatermelonRevolution

14. What is an invaluable lesson you’ve learned during this leadership campaign or your time in politics?
Things are not always what they seem.

15. What is your most marked characteristic?
Authentic and outspoken

16. What is your greatest fear?
Not being able to change Canadian politics to address the climate and ecological crisis.

17. What is your greatest extravagance?
Unfortunately, rent.

18. Who is a politician from another political party that you respect?
NDP MP for Winnipeg Centre, Leah Gazan

19. Which living person do you most admire?
My parents.

20. What is the trait you most deplore in yourself? In others?
In myself, anger and in others, dishonesty.

21. What is your greatest regret?
Not implicating myself in politics sooner because our window is getting smaller and smaller every day.

22. On what occasions do you lie?
I never lie.

23. Which superpower do you wish you had?
Time control.

Click on the profile pictures to read their answers.

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