One of the tasks I undertake at the beginning of every new year is a review the various ways I interact with, communicate and receive comments and concerns from the many constituents within our region.
Over the years I have noticed the communication preferences have changed.
As an example, requests for in-person meetings have declined but telephone calls and emails have increased significantly. More recently I have also noticed an increase in requests for online “Zoom“ meetings.
My goal has always been to provide whatever tools are necessary for citizens to reach me and hold me accountable. This is why I still have a 24/7, 365-day-a-year answering service to return your calls at times convenient to you.
Likewise, I have also made changes to better accommodate for online Zoom meetings.
For 2023, my summer listening tour will continue (which has generated many private member's bills and policy changes federally) and likewise, I will also continue to write my weekly reports, such as this one, and provide an opportunity for input as I have long found this to be a very valuable exercise.
I will also send out printed materials to inform constituents, such as informing them about proposed federal riding boundary changes by the electoral boundary commission. The feedback we received was sent to the commission and we will see how the commission responds in its final report.
Having said all of that, I also like to receive feedback from constituents on their preferred method of communication.
Would you like to see more community town halls or opportunities for one-on-one meetings in person. Likewise, do you prefer online video conferences, or does a phone call suffice? More printed materials, and if so, what kind? Your input is important to me,
On a related note, I would also like to sincerely thank the many constituents who make the effort to reach out and share comments and concerns.
I am often surprised in some cases, where there may be consensus on an issue and other where it appears there should be a consensus but instead there is a wide diversity of views.
Ultimately, your input and concerns are what I take back to Ottawa and, as (part of) the official Opposition, it can lead to opposing or working with the government on various bills and legislation.
My question this week:
By what means do you most value communicating directly with your elected officials?
I can be reached at [email protected] or call toll free 1-800-665-8711
This article is written by or on behalf of an outsourced columnist and does not necessarily reflect the views of Castanet.