OWEN SOUND — Michael Coteau, the third-term MPP and Ontario Liberal leadership candidate, visited Owen Sound yesterday to meet with local Liberals, and visit the Owen Sound Muslim Association, a mosque which was the site of vandalism this summer.
This summer when the Owen Sound mosque was defaced in a display of hate the community came together and stood guard during evening prayer to show their support. Last night Michael Coteau, a former Minister Responsible for Anti-Racism, visited the Owen Sound Muslim Association to do the same. “We stand united in support of religious freedoms and our diversity,” said Coteau.
Michael later joined local Liberals from the Bruce—Grey—Owen Sound Provincial Liberal Association to discuss their issues and his vision for the province. The meeting was hosted by local B&B owners Bill and Cecile Moses. Former MP Ovid Jackson as well as Grey County Warden Selwyn J. Hicks were in attendance.
“The biggest waste we face in Ontario is the waste of human potential. Doug Ford is in it for tax breaks to the wealthy and big corporations—and cuts for everyone else. I’m in it for children and families, our future,” Coteau declared.
“I learnt my values because of how I grew up: as a working-class, immigrant kid. And because of where: in an Ontario that gave me a chance to make it. I’m driven to fight for those values by replacing Doug Ford, and restoring decency to our politics,” Coteau concluded.
Michael Coteau immigrated to Canada as a child and grew up in Flemingdon Park, a working-class neighbourhood in North York. The first member of his family to graduate high school and university, he started his own small business, worked as a community organiser and head of a national nonprofit. He was elected to the Toronto District School Board three times and served as vice-chair of the board, championing digital tools in the classroom, equity strategies and community use of schools. Coteau was elected three times as Member of Provincial Parliament for Don Valley East, and served in multiple ministries where he was tasked with bringing people together to fix tough files, including supports for children with autism, reforming services for children in care, delivering a successful Pan-Am Games, supporting film and cultural economic development, and implementing an anti-racism strategy. He and his wife, Lori, are raising two young daughters.
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