Soon after the COVID-19 pandemic arrived, parents and grandparents in the For Our Kids network started organizing for a Just and Green Recovery from COVID-19. That work continued through the last federal election, holding our MPs to their election promises for a Just Transition Act; leglislation that could address the intertwined climate, social, and economic crises we are in.
Engaging our political leaders is a key thing we can do for our kids. Politicians aren't used to hearing from parents about climate change. Being contacted by concerned families is unusual, and helps apply pressure for urgent and accelerated climate action. Whether in a For Our Kids team or acting with your family or friends, join in:
Contact your MP
Find your MP here. Email or phone their office. Not sure what to say? Here are some ideas:
- let them know you are their constituent (living in their riding)
- if you've met formally with them before, remind them what you met about
- speak from the heart and share your concern about your kids' future if urgent climate action isn't taken
- ask them to meet with you about your concerns and the need for a Just Transition (and/or to present your Just Transition parliamentary petition - see below).
- If you have never met with your MP before and want some help to prepare, talk to us. We can share tips or connect you with parents that have done this work successfully. You can research your MP and where they stand on climate change and have some questions prepared. You could also watch this video with tips from two mothers about engaging politicians, or check out how this For Our Kids team got a meeting with the Minister of Environment and Climate Change.
- send them mail to follow up: include a note or hand-drawn picture from your child; older kids can add their own thoughts!
Gather signatures on a parliamentary petition
Download Council of Canadian's CLIMATE CODE RED TOOLKIT to get the tools you need to present a parliamentary petition about a Just Transition to your MP.
These are formal petitions that must be tabled by your MP in the House of Commons if there’s a minimum of 25 signatures. The government of the day is then required to formally respond within 45 calendar days. Get 25 friends or neighbours in your riding to sign and then deliver it to your MP!
Here's a tutorial from the Climate Emergency Unit on how to engage your MP with this petition, and how we'll know when we're making progress.
Background on the term Just Transition and Legislation in Canada
Some history and context about the term Just Transition from Climate Justice Alliance: What Do We Mean By Just Transition?
Learn more about the Just Transition Act in Canada from The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives in their paper Roadmap to a Just Transitions Act or their video:
From this 350 Canada Townhall, with guests: Green Party Parliamentary Leader Elizabeth May and NDP Environment and Climate Change Critic Laurel Collins.
From Iron and Earth - a worker-led organization whose mission is to empower fossil fuel industry and Indigenous workers to build and implement climate solutions. They commissioned a poll that shows that 88% of fossil fuel workers are interested in training and upskilling to transition to a net-zero economy: Just Transition for working people.
From the Government of Canada's website: Just Transition.