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  • Writer's pictureRhonda Massad

10 reasons to re-elect Monsef Derraji in Nelligan

Monsef Derraji's first term as the Member of National Assembly for the Nelligan Riding has been about meeting Kirkland, Pierrefonds-West and l’Île Bizard's citizens. You've probably seen him at fundraisers, supporting local community organizations or at community events in the West Island. You might have caught a glimpse of him pedalling on his bike through Kirkland or Cap-Saint-Jacques.

One thing is sure; the MNA has been very busy over the last four years. His track record and responsibilities within the Quebec Liberal Party (QLP) are numerous. His portfolio included mandates as the House Leader of the Official Opposition, the Official Opposition critic for health and the Official Opposition critic for social services. He made his mark with his passionate interventions as a critic for the economy, immigration, and innovation.

In a recent interview with the West Island News, editor Rhonda Massad had the opportunity to chat with Monsef Derraji and his team, where they came up with the top 10 reasons they felt it important to re-elect Nelligan's MNA:

1. Find Solutions to the healthcare crisis in Quebec

With a Ph.D. in public health specializing in healthcare optimization, Derraji understands healthcare and the shortcomings of the current system.He knows the system's intricacies - inside out - and is ready to find solutions.

Today, approximately 1 million people are looking for a family physician. That's two times more than the number of people for 2018. The QLP wants to offer a family physician to all Quebecers who want one.

2. Take care of our seniors.

It is no secret that the population is aging. The QLP want to introduce a seniors' benefit of $2,000 per year to support each person aged 70 and up who wants to remain in their own home. Mr. Derraji volunteered at CHSLD Herron during the pandemic and what he saw shook him to his core. Our seniors should decide where they want to live and do so with dignity.

3. Raise awareness about mental health issues plaguing the population

The last few years have been taxing on the population. Even before the pandemic, Quebecers' mental health was of concern. For this reason, the QLP intends to establish a public psychotherapy program to ensure universal access to support services.. The QLP plans to give additional tools and powers to CLSC workers to better contribute to developing mental health care solutions. Derraji will continue helping local community organizations in the health care sector with better funding opportunities. Finally, the QLP will undertake an emergency outreach plan through social and traditional media to promote positive measures, prevention, and the various available services.

4. Limit the impacts of the rising cost of living

Inflation is on everyone's minds. More than every before, families are having a hard time making ends meet. The QLP wishes to help Quebecers and give citizens more financial breathing room.

"Food banks are an integral part of supporting the vulnerable residents in our community," Derraji reviewed. "There are more families than every in need of support since the pandemic. I intend to continue to work closely with the many organizations that lend a hand in the plight of hunger in the region such as the West Island Mission, On Rock, Neighbours for Neighbours Food Drive."

The set of measures suggested by the QLP include an income tax break representing up to $1,125 per person annually. The QLP intends to abolish the QST on all necessities, such as toothbrushes, toothpaste, body wash, shampoo, and over-the-counter medications. Once elected the PLQ government will support its citizens in times of need.

5. Freeze Hydro Québec's exorbitant rates

The QLP is aware that Hydro Québec's current rates are steep. The CAQ mistakenly linked them to inflation, making Hydro pricing very volatile. The QLP wants to freeze electricity rates while implementing an independent rate-setting mechanism. The party plans to stop charging QST on electricity while the rate-setting mechanism is under review.

6. Abolish Welcome Tax for first time homeowners

Many young families can no longer afford to buy a house. The West Island has always been an excellent environment for young families and is made strong by its community. The QLP understands this and will eliminate the welcome tax on purchasing a first property while fully compensating the municipalities.

7. Repeal the Bill 96

Balance and inclusion should always be at the heart of any piece of legislation. According to Derraji, Quebecers can be in favour of protecting the French language without being in favour of Bill 96.

"The Bill went too far and is hurtful to our community. The QLP voted against the Bill and, should it form the government, will repeal it. The QLP will give students back the right to attend the CEGEP of their choice. The QLP government will dispel any concerns about access to health care and social services," Derraji explained.

Furthermore, it would ensure that all infrastructure project assessments in the health and education networks are considered in accordance with actual needs rather than language. The party would also evaluate the administrative burden imposed on businesses by Bill 96. "We want our businesses to prosper, not be buried in paperwork," Derraji stated. The PLQ would eliminate the 6-month delay imposed by the CAQ on immigrants forcing them to communicate with the government ONLY in French at the six month mark.

Above all, Derraji wants to protect the rights of minorities and English speakers. "At this point, the best way to do this is to remove the notwithstanding clause that has been imposed without guidelines in Bill 96," he explained. Removing this legal mechanism will ensure that the justice system can intervene and determine if the law goes too far and if the human rights encroachments are justified. Of course, in Derraji's opinion, it does.


8. Better mobility solutions for the REM

"It is one thing to have the REM in the West Island; it is another to use it efficiently," stated the candidate. Derraji wants to work with the municipalities to optimize parking options at the REM stations as well as bus routes to and from the stations. This will optimize public transit options for our residents.

9. Protect and preserve the environment for future generations

The QLP wants to include the right to biodiversity and environmental preservation among the fundamental rights protected by the Charter of Human Rights and Freedoms. This train of thought will be at the epicentre of all policies and decisions for future projects. Putting the environment at the forefront of any project in the 21st century is an absolute necessity. Furthermore, we must demonstrate greater audacity and increase this objective to 45% by 2030.

10. Derraji is a member of our community

Monsef Derraji and his family have been residents of the West Island for over 12 years. His children attend school in the area, and his family is involved in the community. He understands the daily challenges encountered by residents and is proud to represent Nelligan.

You can follow Monsef Derraji on Facebook, Instagram or visit him in his campaign head office at 4911 boulevard Saint-Charles, Pierrefonds, H9H 3E4 or call (514) 360-2364.

Paid and approved by Frédérique Lissoir, official agent for Monsef Derraji

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