As a first generation Canadian, I have had many golden opportunities presented to me because of our beautiful country. My parents immigrated to Canada from India in 1971 with only one suitcase (yes, I know it sounds cliché).
As a child, I remember my dad talking about the Liberal Party and how he would always be a Liberal. He would often shush me when his favourite Prime Minister Pierre Elliott Trudeau was on TV. I didn’t know what Liberal meant as a child and I remember once asking him, “Dad I thought we were Canadian, not Liberal?” To which my dad laughed and replied, “Being Liberal is being Canadian my dear daughter” (yes, he would call me dear daughter).
When I began to understand basic Canadian politics as I grew older, I couldn’t help myself from being a part of it. My experience being on Student Council at the age of 16 set me on a path to a Liberal future. From being a young girl listening to Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau, to growing as a professional Liberal woman, I would have never imagined that it would have led to the opportunity to work on an election campaign with another Trudeau Prime Minister in 2015. Now I have the possibility of working with our fearless leader as a National Executive Member. My dad would have been very proud and I’m sure that he is smiling from above.
From someone who did not come from a political family, I was introduced to Liberal values in the most Canadian way, by my father’s respect for our country. The passion for my country and the love for my Liberal family has never waivered and has only grown deeper with time. As a long standing Liberal, I have seen many ups and downs the Party has faced and have even stood shoulder to shoulder with fellow Liberals during some of the most challenging of times. One of the lessons I learned was that we can’t stop engaging with Canadians. We need to listen to one another, keep the conversation going, identify issues and find solutions to resolve them.
Having been a Liberal for 26 years, I know what it takes to win in 2019. I have volunteered on countless campaigns and elections. I have worked in many different positions from National Director of the Women’s Commission to Supporting and Acting Director of the Aboriginal Commission – to VP of a riding, VP of NWLC, Acting President of NWLC – also as a Provincial Candidate for the Manitoba Liberals and much more. I understand what it will take to continue our work into 2019 and beyond. With hard work, national conversations – ensuring that Canadians are heard, we will be successful in October 2019.