The Conservative convention held this past May was nothing short of a spectacular event. Hundreds of Conservative supporters, delegates and onlookers arrived in Vancouver from across the country to take part in shaping the future direction of the party. The convention also allowed the opportunity for potential candidates seeking the party’s leadership to put their names forward for consideration and those mulling a potential bid to test the proverbial waters.
Party supporters took the opportunity to discuss the shortcomings of the past 2015 election with surprising optimism. In Stephen Harper’s keynote speech, he acknowledged that the ‘past is no place to linger’. The sweeping changes that followed maintained such a spirit. Delegates representing riding associations from across the country, including a record number of youth, debated and made changes focusing on broadening the Conservatives’ appeal among all Canadians and especially those in urban centers of a more diverse base. A brief overview of the policy resolutions passed focused on the areas of labour, justice, social policy and the economy. Such amendments will be the basis of that will guide the direction of the party into the next election.
Conservatives passed policy resolutions on:
- The right to secret-ballot strike and election votes
- Full, transparent annual financial reporting by unions with not-for-profit status
- Opt-out option for certain union dues
- More financial reporting of union spending on political donations and activism
- No mandatory dues used for political causes
- The belief that mandatory union membership limits economic freedom and stifles growth
- Change the wording of the traditional definition of marriage to include same-sex partnership
- Criminal Code provisions for harassing telephone calls and text messages
- Faith-based organizations can refuse their facilities to those holding contrary views/beliefs
- Consecutive rather than concurrent sentences for those convicted of more than one serious crime
- Optional membership in student unions
- Public-sector pensions and benefits brought into line with private sector