In the lead up to the 2021 Canadian federal election, CJRU reached out to each candidate running in the Toronto Centre riding.
After being one of the Green Party's longtime candidates, Peter Stubbins decided to change party affiliation and join the Animal Protection Party of Canada.
The party grew out of the Animal Alliance, a non-profit group focused on animal advocacy that wanted to run federal candidates. As one of the relatively new parties, the Animal Protection Party will be running about 20 candidates federally across Canada.
"They [Animal Protection Party] wanted to get their messaging out because they're disillusioned, like myself, with the Green Party's messaging," said Stubbins. "The Green Party won't talk about, for instance, the effect of animal agriculture on greenhouse gas emissions."
He is focused on ecological issues affecting Canada, and believes that the decisions made in city ridings like Toronto Centre greatly affect all other parts of the country as well.
Stubbins declined to run for the Greens in the 2019 federal election, left the party about six months prior to the leadership of Annamie Paul, and now runs against Paul in Toronto Centre.
Stubbins said his decision was based on the Green Party's shift from being "neither left or right" [of the political spectrum] and dedicated to environmental issues to becoming more "identarian" as a social justice party and "losing their voice on ecological issues."
Stubbins' platform focuses on seeing issues through an ecological perspective, and finding a balance between environmental responsibility and providing for the riding's residents and students.
These issues include affordable housing for all age groups in the city. Stubbins said universities should offer more housing opportunities for the influx of international students to decrease the burden of finding rental spaces in the open market.
On a national scale, Stubbins wants voters to think about Canada's biodiversity and climate change that directly affect Toronto Centre, including diversifying renewable energy sources and lowering emissions. Further, he said it is critical for the government to help Indigenous communities through education and supporting First Nations entrepreneurs.
Stubbins was the Green Party's first ever candidate elected to a level of government in 1988, and ran in the North Simcoe riding prior to joining the Animal Protection Party.
He graduated from the University of Toronto with an honour's degree in life science in 1979 with a focus on environmental studies and completed a physiotherapy degree in 1984. at U of T.
Listen to Peter Stubbins' full interview here: