Candidate Announcement

At an event yesterday morning in advance of the Green Convention, Elizabeth May announced Amita Kuttner as the 2019 Green Party of Canada candidate for MP of Burnaby North – Seymour. Amita was also appointed critic for Science and Innovation Policy.

The following is a transcript of Amita’s speech:

“As a way to acknowledge that we stand here today on unceded Indigenous land, I challenge everyone to consider our society and its basis and breakdown underlying assumptions. Colonialism is ongoing.

I am honoured to become Science and Innovation policy critic for the Green Party of Canada, and candidate for MP in Burnaby North – Seymour.  This area and its communities are dear to me, as I grew up here, in fact… I grew up right here. I walked down that hill every day. I played in that forest.  I trusted, as every person should be able to, that my family was safe. But my mother was killed and my father changed forever by an avoidable and human-caused natural disaster.

So, what do I hear when someone asks me my opinion on the Kinder Morgan pipeline? I hear them asking me if we should be willing to risk the lives of the people living on Burnaby Mountain. The existing tank farm alone endangers lives. In discussing climate change, I can’t push off consequences as far-fetched, instead I think of the people losing their homes and lives to fire and flood here in BC.

But I am more than my history. I am a scientist, a dreamer, and a pathfinder. I study our vast and limitless universe, in particular I have the great joy of studying black holes, and I have internalized that what we have here on our planet is beyond precious. I also see that the world is changing fast, and we simply aren’t prepared. There is an urgency to the problems we are facing that isn’t being addressed in government.

I am here today because I cannot stand to watch countless people lose their homes and families to increasingly terrible natural disasters. I am here because emerging technologies such as Artificial Intelligence are about to flip our lives upside down. I am here because we risk losing our relevance and our agency in a society divided by inequality

With our current direction we will see hugely increased income inequality as jobs are automated. But immense opportunity also lies before us, we can choose to ensure technology works for all of us; and we must be careful to not leave one another by the wayside.

We need climate action that prepares communities. We need tech policy that protects us. We need legislation based on facts and evidence.

More than anything, we must dare to dream. We can think outside regular boundaries and work to create a just and equitable world for everyone. It is time we admit that our system, though it has gotten us many comforts, is unacceptable. What are we doing with the gift of our lives, and do we want to do?

In this endeavor for positive change, and the creation of a beautiful and just future, we will not fail, as we have no other choice.

The time is now. Dream with us. Become empowered. Let us make the future our own.

Thank you.”