Brant Riding voters don't have to be political insiders with deep pockets to have access to the leader of Her Majesty's Loyal Opposition.
Tom Mulcair, the leader of the federal New Democrats is coming to Brantford next Tuesday, March 18th for his third town hall style meeting in the community and he wants to hear your thoughts.
The event brought to you by the Brant NDP Federal Electoral District Association is free of charge and will take place at the Sanderson Centre in the heart of Downtown Brantford. Doors open at 7 p.m. and a question and answer period will begin at 7:30 p.m.
In contrast to the last time Prime Minister Stephen Harper came to town Tom Mulcair's visit will be quite different.
"For some reason the PM refused to take questions from the local press. We heard from a great many people that they were disappointed in that style of politics, where message control trumps public good - we're happy to do things differently and will be fielding questions from the press and the general public," said Brant NDP Federal President Neil Macdonald.
Mulcair and Brant NDP federal candidate of record Marc Laferriere will be listening for residents thoughts on local issues related to federal policy and answering questions from the audience as well.
"I'd really like to extend an invite to everyone - especially those who normally vote Conservative, Liberal or Green to come and hear what we have to offer," said Laferriere. "There is so much information out there to sort through, so many opinions online and in the media but it is great when people have an opportunity to kick the tires of a party leader and create their own opinion."
"Town halls like this are the very definition of grassroots political community building. It's not about controlling the message, it's about learning and getting to know the community and answering questions about the hopes and frustrations of local residents," Laferriere said. "And all of this consultation helps us build our Federal policy platform in 2015."
New Democrats have also been organizing Pan-Canadian consultations on Bill C-23 - something the governing Conservatives have refused to do. New Democrats have dubbed the bill the "Unfair" Elections Act. Mulcair is planning to address this issue at the town hall as well as issues related to everything from jobs and health care to international trade and the economy.
Mulcair will also speak to the NDP's plan to rein in gas prices and other affordability issues of local importance.