Residents of New Westminster who want to learn more about the Initiative to End the Harmonized Sales Tax (HST), get involved, or just sign the petition will get their chance on Saturday April 17, between 10:00 AM and 12:00 noon at Canadian Autoworkers Union Hall at 326 12th Street.
The official initiative petition will be available for New Westminster residents to sign anytime between 10:00 AM and noon. Beginning at 10 o’clock, local organizers for the campaign will provide an overview of the initiative and train people who want to volunteer to collect signatures for the campaign. After the training, canvassers will head out into their neighbourhoods to collect signatures door-to-door.
“We know people in New Westminster are anxious to have their say on the HST,” said local campaign spokesperson Tania Jarzebiak. “But there are some very strict rules governing the initiative and we wanted to take the time to make sure we do it right.”
“We need to collect at least 4300 signatures from folks who are on the voters list in New Westminster by July 5 – and we hope to make a good start on Saturday,” she added.
The HST will shift $1.9 billion in taxes from corporations onto consumers, will hurt working families and small businesses, and lead to thousands of layoffs in key industries. Opposition to the HST continues to grow, and petition launches in communities across BC have been a huge success. In Fort St John, for example, canvassers collected 1,800 signatures in one day.
“The HST has struck a nerve with people in New Westminster. We’re outraged at the BC Liberal government’s deception and lack of consultation,” Jarzebiak noted, “Judging from the amount of calls and e-mails received so far, we’re going to have an active and successful petition campaign in New Westminster.”
Area businesses have expressed interest in hosting the petition, and organizers are developing a schedule for volunteer canvassers to be in place to collect signatures. More information about locations and times will be made available once the schedule is confirmed.