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Bernie Sanders and Jeremy Corbyn Lead Organizers See Opportunity For Change Ripe in Canada; Speaking in Ottawa on Eve of NDP Convention

For Immediate Release

February 15, 2018, Ottawa— The main architects behind the Bernie Sanders and Jeremy Corbyn breakthrough campaigns in the US and UK will be speaking to an overflow crowd in Ottawa today, on the eve of the NDP federal convention, about the opportunities in Canada for a new transformative politics. 

We think of Canada as a progressive country, but in fact it seems the same conditions exist for a people-powered movement,” said Adam Klug, co-founder of the Momentum UK movement, who is speaking at the event. “People, especially young people, soon to be the largest voting block in Canada, want real change on issues like climate and inequality, but in Canada it’s clear to us they are getting politics-as-usual.” 

The ‘Courage the Leap’ event is co-hosted by two groups: Courage and The Leap. Many of the speakers were directly influenced by The Leap’s vision released two years ago, and by Courage’s sustained work to shift the NDP to more progressive policies. Both groups demand real action on climate change and income inequality among their top priorities.

Another speaker at the event, Becky Bond, senior adviser to Bernie Sanders and co-author of Rules for Revolutionaries, said political change can happen fast and decisively, something she and other organizers keep an eye on.

“I see a lot of Clinton in Trudeau, a nominally progressive leader who sells himself as actually progressive. We know from experience that the people, the voters, become dissatisfied when policy promises fall flat and they want more. They want honesty,” she said, adding that The Leap’s vision influenced how the Sanders campaign created a mass movement that appealed to workers and young people.

“In Canada we know the opportunity for transformative political change is real,” said Avi Lewis, co-founder and strategic director of The Leap. “The Leap’s demands were considered too ambitious two years ago, but today they are not just possible, but mainstream. Add to this the growing power of the millennial voter and the disappointment with our current federal leadership and we have the conditions for a new politics in Canada.”

“Electoral campaigns are tightly controlled by a few people with access to power and resources, but working people are starting to organize their own campaigns and create accessible opportunities for political education,” said Nav Kaur, an Edmonton-based organizer and Courage co-founder, who is speaking at the event. “Will the leadership of electoral parties recognize the authentic movement that is building solidarity on the ground? We aren’t asking for permission to move forward with these strategies—it’s happening.”

Speakers at the event, held at the Museum of Nature, include: Emma Rees and Adam Klug, co-founders of the Momentum U.K. movement, Becky Bond, senior adviser to Bernie Sanders and co-author of Rules for Revolutionaries and Marsha De Cordova, a Labour MP and Corbyn’s shadow minister for disabled people.

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For more information, please contact:

Vanessa Tsimoyianis, communications specialist & media liaison at The Leap

cell: (415) 290-3841, email: media@theleap.org