The second episode of the Canadian Socialist Action webcast is here with a discussion on ‘Socialists in the 2022 Municipal Elections’ with Daniel Tarade, Andrea Pinochet-Escudero, Sean Orr, and Danny Drew.
Please join our live webcast on Thursday, October 6th at 7 PM ET, or watch the recorded presentation anytime on the Socialist Action YouTube Channel.
Daniel Tarade immigrated to Canada as a child refugee from Bosnia and Herzegovina. Inspired by the discovery of Insulin and his brother’s experience with type 1 diabetes, he committed himself to changing the world for the better as a scientist. Daniel obtained his PhD from the University of Toronto in the Department of Laboratory Medicine & Pathobiology in 2021. The process revealed that we can’t simply science our way out of the systemic issues plaguing society. Daniel committed to organizing in the streets and in the workplace against exploitation and oppression of all forms. He is a proud member and union steward in CUPE 3902 and ran for Secretary-Treasurer at the 2021 Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL) convention. Today, Daniel lectures at both the University of Toronto and Toronto Metropolitan University in the life sciences and is running for Toronto District School Board (TDSB) trustee in Parkdale-High Park (Ward 7) with the Municipal Socialist Alliance.
Andrea Pinochet-Escudero is running for Park Board with VOTE Socialist Vancouver. She was raised by a single mother who came to Canada as a refugee. Andrea has worked in shelters, in drop-in centers in the Downtown Eastside, and is currently working in transitional housing in Mt. Pleasant supporting women who have become homeless because they have left abusive relationships. She advocates waterfront social housing, expanded recreation and free programs for youth, children, and everyone making less than $60,000 a year, more pools, more density, and more social housing in West Pt. Grey – including density of services and amenities – and for a movement for justice being built together.
Sean Orr is running for City Council with VOTE Socialist Vancouver. He is a writer, musician, artist, student, dishwasher, and activist living and working in the unceded Coast Salish territories of Vancouver, B.C. Known for his acerbic wit and fiery rants in his Scout Magazine column Tea and Two Slices as well his on-stage antics as frontman in the hardcore band Needs, Orr is the son of Northern Irish immigrants who instilled in him a fierce humanism. From the housing crisis, a failed drug war, the long history of racism, and climate change, to hold the media and politicians accountable – Orr brings a raw yet informed energy to everything he does. At City Council, he will be no different.
Wali Abro became a Canadian citizen last winter, having immigrated from Pakistan nearly 10 years ago. He subscribed to the clichéd image of Canada: that it was fair, compassionate, and built in partnership with the Indigenous peoples. That image was quickly shattered.
Now, he’s fighting for the Canada that was promised. Wali has long been an advocate for electoral reform, holistic social support, and decolonization. He is an active community volunteer, keeps close to the grassroots, and is a passionate activist for Indigenous rights from Turtle Island to Palestine.
He is taking his fight forward by running, as part of the Municipal Socialist Alliance team, to be Councillor for Ward 14 – Toronto-Danforth on a platform that features immediate housing for people experiencing homelessness or precarious housing; improved public safety by significantly de-funding the police and investing in community well-being; and rebuilding Toronto’s infrastructure with climate change and population growth in mind.
Danny Drew is a non-binary activist running to be mayor of Guelph. Born and raised in Oshawa, they moved to attend the University of Guelph in 2009, graduating with a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering. Danny worked in a wide range of jobs, always encouraging co-workers to exercise their rights and push for unionization. Currently seeking to win rights for thousands of workers via reclassification, they’ve supported many striking workers on picket lines.
Danny is a steadfast ally of Indigenous Land Back and Black Lives Matter – actively resisting the rising tide of fascism. Danny’s focus has always been poverty relief; offering labor, organizing capabilities, and vast quantities of recovered supplies for those in need. At the onset of the COVID pandemic, Danny co-developed a renter’s union and helped to operate a Food Not Bombs project. In the municipal arena, Danny pledges to fight tooth and nail for every possible concession from the Capital and its state. That includes a high-powered harm reduction strategy involving: reformed social housing systems and relations, expanded and improved public transit, increased funding for mental health and drug user support programs, worker co-op and community land trust formation and expansion, and a drastically altered and reduced police force. Danny, as part of the Municipal Socialist Alliance, campaigns for a Workers’ Government to increase class consciousness, and spur unionization, mutual aid, and local self-organization.
The Socialist Action webcast is hosted by Elizabeth Byce. Elizabeth is the federal treasurer of Socialist Action, a member of the NDP Socialist Caucus steering committee, a past secretary of the Toronto and York Region Labour Council, and a retired member of the Canadian Union of Postal Workers.
We acknowledge that this webcast is being recorded on Indigenous lands across Turtle Island, known as North America. That includes the unceded territory of the Mississaugas of the New Credit, the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation as well as the traditional territory of the Huron-Wendat and Haudenosaunee peoples, in the place called Toronto. We join in the fight for justice, recognizing that there can be no real reconciliation without restitution. That entails seizing the assets of the big resource corporations and returning them to the commons.