The riding was split off from three different constituencies over the years, with mostly Conservative representation. But in the newer district, Liberal incumbent Jennifer O’Connell has been representing the riding for the past four years.
She says after being a city councillor as well as the sitting MP, when it comes to politics she know what her community needs.
“You really have to listen and know the issues and you have to know how to get things done,” O’Connell says. “I’ve been able to advocate for my community and I’ve actually been able to deliver results.”
One of the candidates looking to unseat O’Connell is Cyma Musarat representing the Conservative Party. Musarat, who owns a local construction company, says the Liberal Party isn’t doing enough for the region. She’s lived in the city for the past year and hopes she can bring her voice to Ottawa about the desperate need for jobs in the area.
“I want to create an economic stimulus in Pickering-Uxbridge. We need to create more jobs, and create conditions so that more businesses come here and existing businesses flourish,” Musarat says. “I want to be able to create a future for our families.”
Green Party candidate Peter Forint has lived in the region with his family for 20 years. He says the time is now for the government to tackle environmental concerns.
“We’re different than all of the other parties. We are not whipped; we are not puppets of the prime minister. We as Green MPs will make sure the prime minister reports to parliament and not the other way around.”
NDP candidate Eileen Higdon is no stranger to the campaign trail. She has run in several elections and even served as a councillor for Pickering for one term. She says – raising a family – she’s disappointed she can’t offer more.
“I cannot offer them the life I’ve had in Canada. I find that very very sad. I’d like to stand up and say we have made some serious errors in the past, but it’s time to reckon up and solve some of the big issues.”
Representing the People’s Party of Canada is former Conservative MP Corneilu Chisu. He represented the Pickering riding in 2011 for one term before choosing to join the People’s Party this year.