Liberal candidate Ahmed Yousef is currently a sitting councillor in Maple Ridge. (Special to The News)

Liberal candidate Ahmed Yousef is currently a sitting councillor in Maple Ridge. (Special to The News)

PITT MEADOWS-MAPLE RIDGE VOTES

Maple Ridge councillor looks to be Liberal MP

Each candidate was invited to provide a brief biography and answers to five key election questions

ABOUT THE CANDIDATE

Age: 42

Have you held office in past? If so, please specify: Yes, Maple Ridge City councillor

Bio: I am disciplined and energetic.

I have a bachelors degree in political science and a master in international relations.

I was born in Egypt and raised in the U.S.

My introduction to working with the City of Maple Ridge was through an economic development office contract to research, analyze, and present findings and recommendations to mayor and council on home-based businesses.

I’ve lived and worked in several countries, including the U.S.A., Egypt, Kuwait, United Arab Emirates, and Canada.

I met my wife while she was teaching in Abu Dhabi.

We moved to Maple Ridge in 2010. We have twin 11-year-old daughters, and a nine-year-old son.

Since arriving in Maple Ridge in 2010, I have been an active volunteer in the community.

Among the groups I have been affiliated with are Friends in Need Food Bank, KidSport, Scout Canada, Hope for Freedom Mat Program, and Operation Red Nose.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/VoteYousef

Twitter: @Yousef_PMMR

Website: ahmedyousef.liberal.ca

Instagram: @MapleRidgeYousef

Telephone: 236-886-1791

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ELECTION QUESTIONS:

Each candidate for the Sept. 20, 2021 federal election has been provided with these five (5) questions, along with the following instructions.

To help voters make their choice on election day, The News is asking local candidates a series of questions on issues of importance.

Each question MUST be answered: yes (Y), no (N), or (D) Don’t Know. This is not meant to make things difficult. But reality is that if you’re in the House you’d have to vote yes, no, or abstain. The bonus is that each candidate can expand on ANY or ALL of our questions with answers of up to 200 words each that will appear online.

Please note, that due to space limitations, only one of your answers will be included in the print edition of The News on Sept. 16. You get to pick which one. So, you must CLEARLY indicate which expanded answer you want to see published in print. If you don’t specify, we will choose.

1. Would you support a federal vehicle tax based on CO2 emissions?

Yousef: “No, I do not support a new federal vehicle tax based on CO2 emissions as that would be going after individuals using their vehicles to commute to work or for work purposes. The carbon taxes already apply in proportion to environmental impact from CO2 emissions. The past Liberal government and our platform going forward support incentives for Canadians to buy zero emission vehicles. A vehicle tax could delay replacement of older, high CO2 emission vehicles, with newer low emission vehicles. Not every family, business or organization may be able to afford a new zero emission vehicle.”

2. Does your party have a plan to fill the many staff vacancies in the RCMP?

Yousef: “No, there is not a policy plan to fill staff vacancies.

The RCMP leadership needs to be empowered and accountable for delivering on planned commitments and service levels.

Our MPs have an important role to listen and liaise with the community and people serving within the RCMP to identify issues, gaps and opportunities.

My aim would be to advocate for both communities to ensure federal services are funded, appropriate oversight and legislative frameworks are in place for success.

The Liberal Party plans to enhance the capacity of the RCMP, increase resources to protect Canadians, and complete reforms to improve fairness.

These include enhancing the capacity of the RCMP and the Canada Border Services Agency to combat the illegal importation of firearms.

And, increase resources available to our national security agencies to counter foreign interference and to the RCMP to protect Canadians from unacceptable surveillance, harassment, and intimidation by foreign actors.”

3. Would you support the federal government cancelling the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion to fight climate change?

Yousef: “Yes, I would, as we start to phase out fossil-fuel dependency we cannot invest in expansions.

Funds for the pipeline must be redirected to bolster infrastructure for zero-carbon mass transit, incentivize the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions.”

4. Should Ottawa provide cash incentives to parents for fully vaccinating children, including vaccination against COVID, flu, measles, etc.?

Yousef: “No, there are more effective ways for Ottawa to support provinces and communities in rolling out vaccination efforts. Cash incentives could undermine future vaccination efforts by rewarding delays.”

5. Given our inability to make vaccines at the start of the pandemic, should Ottawa double its investment in research, science, and tech startups?

Yousef: “Yes, absolutely! Canada should increase investments in research, support technology innovators, and this is reflected in our election platform.

A re-elected Liberal government will:

• Invest $100 million to study the long-term health impacts of COVID-19, including the effects of “long- COVID” on different groups, including vulnerable populations and children.

Over the last six years, we have made big investments in Canadian research, innovation, and talent.

A re-elected Liberal government will:

• Add 1,000 Canada Research Chairs to help attract and retain top talent at Canadian universities and support graduate research, with a focus on improving gender and racial equity among Canadian faculty, promoting inter-disciplinary research, and reinforcing Canada’s world leading capabilities in life sciences and bio-medical research.”

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