Hundreds of students will say “iVote-jeVote” at large gathering with party leaders

Posted on Tuesday, March 25, 2014

University of Ottawa students are anything but apathetic when it comes to politics. Hundreds of them will turn out to hear federal party leaders Thomas Mulcair (NDP), Justin Trudeau (Liberal) and Elizabeth May (Green), as well as MP Michael Chong (Conservative), speak about the importance of youth participation in the democratic process.

This panel discussion is the first event organized as part of iVote-jeVote, a new initiative by the Faculty of Social Sciences Jean-Luc Pepin Research Chair to counter the drop in voter turnout in Canada, especially among 18 to 24 year olds.

“This alarming trend not only weakens the quality of democratic discourse and debate in Canada, but undermines the public consensus required to support governance,” says Kevin Page, chairholder and former parliamentary budget officer. “I have a responsibility to engage students both at our institution and beyond in the federal political process.”

The iVote-jeVote initiative brings together youth with different perspectives — the non-voters, the apathetic and those who already vote or are politically active — and encourages them to discuss political engagement with political leaders.

“The Faculty of Social Science's end-goal is to foster a sense of citizenry, interest and engagement in our students and graduates,” says Dean Marcel Mérette. “Kevin Page's work with the Jean-Luc Pepin Research Chair is an example of our faculty's power as a laboratory of ideas. This event will make the world of politics accessible to a generation that could be more engaged.”

Kevin Page is committed to continuing this dialogue between voting age youth and political leaders. He encourages other Canadian colleges and universities to join iVote-jeVote and hold their own campus events.

For event information (time, place, etc.), see the media advisory.

For additional information or to register, visit www.ivote-jevote.ca.

Watch the discussion live on CPAC. Follow the event on Twitter (@ivotejevote) and join the conversation: #jevote and #ivote.

Information for media:

Kina Leclair
Media Relations Officer
University of Ottawa
Cell: 613-762-2908
kleclair@uOttawa.ca

Caroline Milliard
Manager, Media Relations
University of Ottawa
Cell: 613-240-0275
caroline.milliard@uOttawa.ca

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