HAMILTON — Michael Coteau, the third-term Liberal MPP, visited Hamilton on the second day of his campaign seeking the leadership of the Ontario Liberal Party to replace Doug Ford as Premier.
Coteau attended the LGBTQ Advisory Committee of Hamilton’s community update to show solidarity with the LGBTQ community following what he labelled “disgusting acts that took place against Pride participants: an attack on one group’s human rights is an attack on all human rights. We need to stand together and call out hate and discrimination.”
Coteau later joined over 50 supporters for a social event at a pub in Westdale, where he spoke to his motivation for running, saying, “Doug Ford says kids today aren’t worth the cost. That’s his message—Ontario doesn’t value you. I was that kid who was told someone like you doesn’t matter,” said Coteau. “And now, someone like me is taking a stand.
“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.