“Oki, I am Nii sti noh tis pi yakii, Dances with all Medicine pipes, my English name is Rebecca Many Grey Horses, I am from the Blood Tribe in Southern Alberta.  I was asked to say a few words of support for Niki Ashton.  I met this young woman recently, and what impressed me was the respect she has for Indigenous people and her determination to understand Indigenous issues.  She is described as a champion for the social issues, I say she is a champion for Indigenous women!  Advocates like Niki are few and far between, I admire her tenacity to support and advocate for the marginalized.   She is outspoken on Indigenous issues and for Missing and Murdered Indigenous women. I ask you as Indigenous people and as Canadians to support Niki Ashton for leader of the NDP. I stand with Niki Ashton!”

– Rebecca Many Grey Horses // Kainai, Treaty 7 Territory

“I support Niki because we need a leader who is willing to say what she means and live those values. I want a leader who listens, and Niki is one of the few in Ottawa who consistently listens to the concerns and takes action.”

– Kat Barnes // Edmonton, Alberta

“Niki is one of those rare people in politics who is truly, deeply a good person with strong morals. She actively works to bring justice to unjust situations. I trust Niki. I would trust Niki with a lot of things, including my party and the country.”

– Reakash Walters // Edmonton, AB

“So Proud to say on Pride Day that I am supporting Niki Ashton for Federal NDP Leader! Many of our members in CUPE Ontario feel the same way – and others are making up their minds – or have decided on others – which is the heart of democracy! But I personally want our party to be a bold progressive voice – to demand more for average folks. Niki is a smart, strong, experienced, progressive woman who I believe will make a wonderful leader for our party!”

– Fred Hahn // President of CUPE Ontario

“Aujourd’hui, j’ai le plaisir de vous annoncer qu’après plusieurs mois de réflexion, ainsi que d’innombrables discussions avec des militantes et militants NPD, avec plusieurs candidats et candidate à la chefferie, j’ai pris ma décision concernant cette course.

Personnellement, la question à laquelle il était essentiel de répondre était la suivante : « Quelle candidat-e était véritablement prêt-e à ramener le NPD dans le 21e siècle ? » Pour ce faire, il fallait avant tout comprendre les leçons de 2015. Depuis les deux dernières années, depuis la défaite de 2015, j’ai passé beaucoup de temps à réfléchir aux causes de notre défaite, c’était un moyen thérapeutique disons, pour moi de soulager la douleur que c’était de voir filler entre nos doigts cette ouverture historique.

Je suis arrivé à la conclusion que si le NPD, ou n’importe quel autre parti de gauche veut former une majorité démocratique au sein de ce pays il faut trois choses : d’abord, une plateforme ancrée à « gauche » qui s’assume qui énonce une vision cohérente, il faut redéfinir et reconfigurer les termes du débat public. On ne peut se contenter d’être un parti des urnes exclusivement, un parti gestionnaire, cloisonné à la Chambre des Communes, il faut que l’on devienne un parti de la rue, de la société civile, des organisations commentaires, des mouvements sociaux il faut être un parti de militantes & militants, fut une époque ou nous l’étions, il faut qu’on le redevienne. Il est essentiel de comprendre que le NPD n’est que le véhicule politique d’un mouvement qui doit le dépasser très largement. Dernièrement, ceci est pour moi la leçon la plus importante de toutes, il faut revigorer les mécanismes démocratiques au sein du parti ! Décentraliser la structure du parti et permettre une certaine autonomie au sein du parti, il faut opposer au centralisme dirigiste, l’asymétrie et la démocratie, qui respecte la diversité et les différences aussi de notre mouvement. Il est impératif de changer la culture interne du parti, de bâtir une vraie culture de débat, de délibération, d’échange. Les congrès se doivent d’être le lieu par excellence de cette démocratie participative. Tout ça pour dire qu’un parti de « gauche » ne peut pas se « faufiler au pouvoir », c’est un travail de profondeur, de terrain, un travail de longue haleine, pas un « one shot wonder » pur produit de l’équipe de comms.

Au fur et à mesure de mes discussions avec Niki Ashton il semblait clair que nous surfons sur la même vague politique, nous que nous avions les mêmes idées, les mêmes convictions profondes, mais la chose qui m’as fait prendre position en faveur de la candidature de Niki aujourd’hui, c’est sa compréhension profonde des manquements démocratiques au sein du NPD et des ses propositions concrètes pour bâtir un cadre démocratique qui soit véritablement participatif pour y remédier. Niki Ashton représente le futur de notre mouvement, un futur audacieux, qui n’a pas froid aux yeux et qui ne mâche pas ses mots. Niki et le projet politique qu’elle porte avec elle depuis des lustres, est un projet d’avenir, un projet d’espoir, de justice et de solidarité. Je suis fier aujourd’hui de prendre un pas ensemble avec Niki vers le futur.”

– Niall Clapham-Ricardo // Montreal, QC

“She stands for public control of public services, she is a solid supporter of helping working class families suffering from precarious work, low wages and high tuition fees. She believes in a fair and balanced approach to improving the conditions facing Palestinians and can be counted upon to bring Canada’s foreign policy back in line with the principles of social justice and fairness.”

– Sid Ryan // Former President of the Ontario Federation of Labour

“I am voting for Niki Ashton because truly progressive politics is something you do, not something you talk about.”

– Tarek Loubani , Emergency Physician, Palestinian refugee living in Canada

“My family goes back three generations of NDP supporters. I have always believed in the values the party represents- coming from a family of teachers and forestry union workers, supporting the NDP always made sense. But this is the first time I have cared about who was running for leader and the first year I bought a membership.

In Niki, we have a leadership candidate who represents my generation but whose values appeal to all. Someone with experience, tenacity and principle. Someone who is driving progressive, political change.

For the first time, I have found someone who not only supports the fight for gender equality, but is living the fight herself. I have found someone who represents me. For the first time, I’m inspired.

That’s why I am supporting Niki Ashton.”

– Emily R. White, Vancouver, BC. Photographer

“As a social justice activist for much of my teenage and adult life, it was important for me to pick a leader who I knew as going to connect with the grassroots of our party, and focus on the important work of forming government while sticking the principles that make us all proud to be New Democrats. In Niki Ashton, I found that leader. She is willing to reach out beyond the entrenched inner circle of the party apparatchiks and include activists in policy making; she included me in the building of a mental health platform that was not just focused on what we can do now, but what needs to be done to ensure that the mental health needs of Canadians are appropriately address over the long term.

I support Niki Ashton for NDP leader because I trust her to build an inclusive party that takes on the hard challenges of our time, and doesn’t shy away from the tough fights. I support Niki because she believes in Canadians and the good that we can do when we band together. Niki will build a movement, and that movement will change this country.”

– Ryan Painter, community organizer and mental health activist, Vancouver Island, B.C.

“As a Muslim woman born and raised in Canada, our lives are becoming more uncertain and unstable. I am voting for Niki because she is a fighter for all of us. She is fighting for nationalisation of our resources, reducing militarisation and conflict abroad, and for free tuition. She is fighting for a better future and taking back our party.”

– Aminah Sheikh, Labour and Union Organizer, Toronto ON

“I am very pleased to be here today to offer my support and endorsement for Niki Ashton to be the next leader of the Federal NDP. First I watched her from afar like most Canadians as a citizen.  And now, I have had the opportunity to be her colleague in the House of Commons and as part of NDP opposition caucus.  Up close and personal so to speak.

Regardless of the vantage point.  I am impressed!

Being a leader is a tough job and she is up for it!

Right from the get go in her political career she has stood up for equity and human rights…As an MP for her riding of Churchill-Keewatinook Aski she has advocated for the north, her community, for good jobs, for good education, for equity, fairness and human rights.

She has brought a loud and proud voice to issues affecting the north, the folks she represents.

Bringing attention and a voice to local issues that are effecting real people everyday, that is what I admire most and is my goal too as an MP for Saskatoon West.

On the the national stage in Ottawa where I have worked along side her, I have been most impress with her work advocating for younger people…younger than me..which is a few people, and fighting for their right to NOT have to look forward to a future of work that is precarious, low waged, no security, no benefits.  Work that doesn’t allow you to plan for a real future.

In Niki I see a smart, caring, fierce principled leader.

I really like the how she proposes to work in partnership with communities and community-based organizations who are working on the front line of this issue day in and day out.

Communities more often than not have the answers.  They just need a government that understands that and understands how to really be a partner for change.”

– Sheri Benson, MP for Saskatoon West

“I am endorsing Niki Ashton for the next Leader of the federal NDP!

I have spent the last few months reviewing policy proposals, watching the debates and contemplating the candidates’ past work. After careful reflection, there is no doubt in my mind that Niki is the best person to lead our party forward.

I originally joined the NDP in 2014 because of two key issues: the environment and Indigenous rights. It is of my opinion that Niki is the strongest candidate on these issues. I trust her to push for a carbon-free green economy while advocating for the full implementation of the United Nations’ Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. 

Acting as Vice-President of Communications for the New Democratic Youth of Canada for the last 14 months, I have gotten to know and work with Niki and her team. I stood next to her as she waited to speak in favor of a policy proposal at the 2016 NDP Convention that would have required parties to run an equitable representation of candidates. I watched as she led a countrywide tour to address the rise of precarious work in the Millennial generation, the first MP to do so. She has been a consistent ally for young Canadians across a wide range of issues, and I know that she will always keep our generation, and those that follow, at the forefront of her political agenda.

Niki is a strong intersectional feminist who understands that to achieve change in this country, we have to challenge the system as a whole. She will lead the fight against corporations and big-business while advocating for marginalized Canadians. Niki will inspire a whole host of Canadians who have been disinterested by the political system. She will raise taxes on the wealthy and push for tuition free post-secondary education and the public ownership of services.

Niki Ashton makes me proud to be a New Democrat and I can’t wait to help elect her as the next Leader of the NDP, and the next Prime Minister of Canada!”

– Alex Gold-Apel, Vice-President of Communications for the New Democratic Youth of Canada, Montreal, Canada

“Niki has been steadfast in her fight for social, economic, environmental and racial justice. Her genuine commitment to delivering  structural change echoes that embodied by other progressive movements across this country and around the world.

Niki’s support for frontline communities is both unwavering and unmatched and as a young person, I know  she will fight for me, my future and for all of us.

In a time of unparalleled and intersecting crises, we simply cannot afford the politics of business as usual. This is not the time for cautious centrism. We need a bold vision, one rooted in grassroots social action. I’m voting for Niki because I know she will deliver that vision.

– Geneviève Nevin, Victoria BC

“I’m very happy to endorse Niki Ashton for leader of the New Democratic Party. The next NDP leader needs to understand not only our history, but also our present moment, and where we’re heading. Niki gets that our party’s socialist legacy is no burden but an asset, as free market orthodoxy and carbon-intensive colonialism collapse around our ears.
All over the world, working people and youth are asserting their indignant hopefulness, our refusal to submit to a burning, unequal planet; Indigenous peoples across the globe are demanding an end to dispossessions, displacements, and brutalities old and new. Niki understands that if our party has a future — hell, if our society has a future — it lies in acknowledging, honouring, and participating in these movements. After decades of being told that we were powerless to create a more equal, democratic, inclusive, kinder country, we’re waking up from the greedy delirium of neoliberalism to the realization that we have choices — that in fact, democracy means nothing if we don’t.
Niki understands that it’s not the NDP leader’s job to impress right-wing newspaper pundits. She’s saying loud and clear, without apology, that she stands with working people; the young; racialized communities; sovereign Indigenous nations; LGBTQ2S communities; climate justice fighters; people living with disabilities; peace activists; feminists; Francophones; trade unions, and more — and you know what? It’s music to my ears.”
– Charlie Demers, Comedian and Writer, Vancouver BC
 

“I stand with Niki Ashton!”

– Andrea Canales, Women’s Advisory Committee – City of Vancouver, Vancouver, BC