On Jan. 22, a group of over 50 New Democrat Party members gathered in a room to decide on who they believe will be the next Member of Provincial Parliament for Peterborough. The man that they selected was Sean Conway, a 27-year-old Indigenous musician from Peterborough. Sean Conway won the nomination over Zach Hatton, a 17-year-old community member just finishing up high school.
The nomination meeting began with two acknowledgements, one of the stolen Indigenous land on which the meeting was held and the other of Jenny Carter. Jenny Carter was the last elected representative form the NDP who called Peterborough their home in 1990. There was a sense in the room that this was a time for a pivot to a new, younger generation for the NDP in Peterborough.
Kate Story, a local playwright and actor was excited about Conway’s victory: “If there’s anyone that knows about community it’s Sean.” She was also pleased about the prospect of artists becoming involved in politics stating that she “feels like the role of arts in politics is often ignored.”
Bradley White, president of both the provincial and federal NDP riding associations believes that the NDP will win this election by pushing “Pharmacare for all.” The policy — which has been featured as central to the provincial NDP’s campaign — seeks to provide Pharmacare insurance to all Ontarians. It is estimated that there are over 2 million people in Ontario between the ages of 18-64 that are not insured through their job.
Jennifer French, MPP for Oshawa wants Conway to “keep his enthusiasm, which he undoubtedly has.”
Sean Conway is “ecstatic” about the opportunity to represent the NDP in Peterborough and is “looking forward to getting around, talking to people, listening to people.”