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ADCOCK: Promising change with the Liberals

With video: Liberal infrastructure plan will grow the economy, says Jessie Adcock
Jessie Adcock Liberal
Jessie Adcock is running for the Liberal Party of Canada in the riding of Port Moody-Coquitlam.

AGE: 42

OCCUPATION: chief digital officer, city of Vancouver (currently on unpaid leave)


The Port Moody-Coquitlam riding is as geographically large as it is economically and socially diverse, stretching from the estate homes of Anmore to the suburban enclaves of Ranch Park and River Heights and apartments along North Road. But Liberal candidate Jessie Adcock said she thinks she has a message that resonates with a range of voters.

"I am hearing that we need to restore the reputation of Canada," said Adcock, adding that she believes her party will meet that goal with a plan that will grow the economy and build up the middle class while also supporting seniors and protecting the environment.

Adcock, who has worked in both the public and private sectors on digital issues, believes she has skills that could be used to help modernize and transform the government and make it more accessible to the public.

"In 2015, we have technology that helps all aspects of our life and has changed the way we do things. I think that one way we can leverage that is to create a fairer system of government," Adcock says.

As a mom of a nine-year-old daughter, Adcock says she understands what families are facing and believes the Liberals have a better plan to replace the current expanded Universal Child Care Benefit, which is taxed, with a Canada Child Benefit, which would not be taxed but would be income tested.

"It would lift 315,000 kids out of poverty," Adcock said, adding that the Liberal plan to implement a "middle class" tax cut — reducing the rate from 22% to 20.5% on incomes between $44,701 and $89,401 — would give Canadians a break. To pay for it, however, Adcock acknowledge that the top 1% of incomes would pay more.

Many critics have assailed the Liberals for projecting three years of deficits before balancing the budget but Adcock maintains that the planned deficits would actually be investments because the money, up to $10 billion a year, would go to a new infrastructure program that would create jobs and improve public transit, build affordable housing and seniors' facilities, and invest in green projects such as clean tech and digital initiatives.
"It's not an operating deficit, we're talking about a capital investment in our future," she said.

It was during dinner last Easter that Adcock decided to throw her hat into the ring. At the time, she was expressing concerns about her daughter's future when the idea of running for the Liberals occurred to the Anmore resident.
"The view I have of the world through her eyes is not up to the view Canadians have always have, and if we keep this going, the next generation will be worse off."

She also dismisses strategic voting to prevent vote-splitting among progressive parties. "I'm concerned we have game-ified voting," she says, noting people should vote for the party that best represents their views and pointing out that Liberal leader Justin Trudeau has promised to end the current first-past-the-post electoral system.

Adcock credits her mom, a Punjabi immigrant, for instilling in her an appreciation of Canada and the opportunities for participation it provides. Her mother volunteered for the Liberal Party and Adcock has been a card-carrying member herself at various times since she started going to university and working as a lifeguard at Rocky Point pool.

"She instilled in us those values and remind us every day how lucky we are to live in Canada."