The long wait is over and today Justin Trudeau introduced his cabinet. For the most part I was pleased with what he tried to do, although I felt that he left out a couple of obvious visible minorities. I guess that certain things take longer to change than others and some old habits are harder to break. I do not know what the criteria was for each portfolio, but I would have to assume that if the vetting process was done fairly then there was not one of the 2 obvious minorities left out of this cabinet that had what it took to head up any of the ministries. I like Justin Trudeau and I think that he has taken an important 1st step, but in my opinion he has just proved that his vision of what a modern Canada looks like does not necessarily include inviting these 2 visible minorities into cabinet, to sit at the table and be heard, or to allow them to help at a cabinet level to help decide how this country will go forward. Having said this however, I can say that I was glad to see that Justin Trudeau,
- Kept his campaign promise to put as many women in the cabinet as men and managed to make their presence in the cabinet more than just window dressing, or a way to appease and quiet activist feminists. I think that through the important positions that these ladies have as ministers finally gives the people of this country no choice but to recognise, accept and come to terms with, that in 2015 there are no men’s jobs, or women’s jobs, there are just jobs. I believe that through his definitive action prime minister Justin Trudeau has put forth and example on hiring practices that will be hard for employers and would be employers of this country to ignore. I am so pleased that all of the women in this cabinet are educated and are representative of experienced reelected politicians previously passed over for cabinet with the Liberal Party of Canada that have over the years brought so much to the table for this party and the new, who bring their enthusiasm, energy, vision and how to turn this country back into a Canada that all Canadians can be proud of and feel a part of and see hope for the futures in going forward.
- Allowed for every province and territory to be represented in cabinet, because I think that if you are going to have a government that is run once again by its cabinet then that cabinet should be representative of the whole country and the voice of the people of each territory and province heard from the politician or politicians they voted for. That Justin Trudeau was able to bring Quebec back into the decision-making process by giving them cabinet ministers was to me long over due and hopefully begins a trend of Quebecers feeling that they are a part of Canada and that the government the politicians they actually voted for are in a position of power to make a difference when it comes to voicing Quebec’s needs and concerns. I am pleased that for once this government will be working as a team with the power back in the hands of the elected politicians, rather in the hands of the unelected bureaucrats in the prime minister’s office.
- Kept his promise when it came to diversification and making the cabinet look more like what Canada truly looks like. South Asians, First Nations, Whites, non heterosexuals. I was glad to see the proof that there is nothing to fear and everything to gain when we open our doors to those fleeing oppression and terrorism demonstrated by the appointment of Maryam Monsef. She fled Taliban rule settling in Canada in 1996 as a refugee and now is Canada’s minister of Democratic Institutions.
Missing From Cabinet were representatives of the Black community: I was and still am as a Black person and a Canadian disappointed, frustrated and to be quite frank saddened to see that with all the talk of making this cabinet representative of what a modern-day Canada truly looks like that there was not one black person named to cabinet out of all those newly elected and the older returning Liberal MPs and I had to pause and wonder why and what message is that sending to Canadians? Is it that Justin Trudeau forgot about them, was this a bad mistake, an oversight and nothing more, or is there something more telling in this lack of representation at the top. Were those doing the vetting and Justin Trudeau himself perhaps thinking that,
- Black politicians elected to be Liberal Party of Canada are not qualified to hold a cabinet post and do not fit into that answer he gave about why he made the cabinet 50% Men and 50% women, saying simply, “Because it is 2015?”
- Black people making important decisions does not reflect what a truly modern Canada looks like and so therefore them being in cabinet did figure as a priority, or something that needed to rectified. Not having Black representation in cabinet to me makes it very clear how far we have come and how far we still have to go, how much things have changed for some and how much things never change for others. I can only hope that part of the changes in the governing style of the Liberal Party of Canada under the leadership of Justin Trudeau Justin Trudeau, will allow him to appoint a minister to cabinet from the visible minorities left out this time around.
To be fair I do not see any oriental representation in this cabinet either and the same questions come to mind as did with Black representation. There is no pleasing all people that is for sure, but I think that when a leader of a political party says things like making cabinet look like the faces of Canada than they should make sure that the cabinet reflects that and does not alienate by leaving out of cabinet such obvious visible minorities as Blacks and Orientals that have not only done so much for this country and in getting him and his party elected. Justin Trudeau has kept his promises up to now, but he has also proven that he and this country have a long way to go when it comes to equal representation for all and who are considered to represent the true face of the Canada’s population.