Winnipeg Free Press - ONLINE EDITION

NDP bait and switch

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The NDP has just launched what it's calling its Fairer Deal for Renters campaign. Flyers and emails (like the one below) are appearing in people's mailboxes directing them to a website where citizens can fill out a brief survey on how to fix the province's rental crisis.

How great is that!? Finally, the NDP is taking action on what's arguably the city's most pressing poverty problem -- our complete lack of decent, affordable rental units. Maybe the NDP is planning to tackle some of the recommendations smart people have made in recent years to fix this! Hallelujah!

Except the campaign is the most offensive kind of bogus. It's just a bait-and-switch push poll designed to pad the NDP's list of supporters. The website does nothing but promote the small tweaks the NDP already made to landlord-tenant rules, and then it asks which of the party's well-established and totally unrelated campaign promises you like best, including several meant as backhanded attempts to demonize the Conservatives.

It's one thing not to care much about poor renters. It's another thing entirely to use their issues as a marketing strategy to build up your pre-election warchest. At best, cheesy. At worst, shameful.

 

Hello XXX,

You may have seen information in your mailbox recently about Manitoba's Fairer Deal for Renters.

Most of us have rented at some point in our lives, which is why I'm proud to be part of a government that introduces new protections for tenants rather than cuts.

Changes include investing in repairs and upgrades to social housing and introducing a new housing tax credit to stimulate construction in the private and non-profit sectors. On top of that, more apartment dwellers will now be protected from large rent increases.

But even with these changes I know there is more we can do. I want to hear what you think our next steps should be.

I'm inviting you to visit FairerDeal4Renters.ca to give us your input and to learn more about our plan for Manitoba renters.

You can fill in a brief survey and let me know how you think we can continue to protect tenants and keep life affordable for Manitoba families, while protecting the services we value most. I look forward to hearing from you.

**PS - Feel free to forward this email on to any family and friends you think may be interested in providing us with feedback on this issue.

Thank you,

Jennifer Howard - MLA for Fort Rouge

Constituency Office: #9-222 Osborne St. South, Winnipeg, MB R3L 1Z3
Phone: (204) 946-0272  |   Fax: (204) 946-0550
Website:
www.JenniferHoward.ca  |   Email:
Jennifer.Howard@YourManitoba.ca         

  

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About Mary Agnes Welch

Mary Agnes Welch joined the Free Press in 2002, first covering city hall and then the Manitoba legislature before moving to her current post as public policy reporter. Before Winnipeg, she worked at the Windsor Star and the Odessa American, a small daily newspaper in West Texas. There, in addition to covering more than 20 counties, she took high school football scores from coaches all over West Texas by phone every Friday night.

Mary Agnes is a graduate of Columbia University’s journalism school. She has been part of two teams of reporters nominated for a Michener Award. In 2011, 2012 and 2013 she was nominated for a National Newspaper Award in the beat category.

She was a Southam journalism fellow at the University of Toronto’s Massey College in 2012-13, where she studied indigenous issues, urban planning and political science. She is also the former national president of the Canadian Association of Journalists and has served on several boards.

She once misspelled "Shih Tzu" in the paper and received 37 emails from angry dog-owners.

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