By Joan Janzen

I read a joke that read like this … “I petitioned to rename a Canadian province. Their government would have Nunavut.”

You may have noticed a significant increase in the amount of petitions made available on social media throughout the past few years. I know I have personally signed more petitions than ever before. However, when people sign a lot of petitions, they may begin to question whether their signature makes a difference in the long run. Well, according to the Canadian Taxpayers Federation (CTF) those petitions you sign do make a difference.

Last year, a CTF petition to cut off taxpayer support for the famous royal couple, Harry and Meghan, was successful. In Quebec, one of CTF’s petitions led the government to refund taxpayers $1.5 billion in hydro overpayments.

Recently over 200,000 Canadians signed the CTF’s petition calling on our Prime Minister to scrap the lifetime expense account for retired governors general. The CTF delivered this, their largest ever petition, to the Prime Minister’s Office in person. There were so many boxes of paper, the trolley they used for delivery broke. There were eight boxes delivered to the Prime Minister’s door. All that paper helped make the message clear – Canadians agree that retired governors general should not be getting $206,000 annual expense accounts for life. Petitions are an efficient way for Canadians to keep pushing the government to act.

Some Canadians believe there should be a petition regarding the upcoming Olympics. Toronto-based broadcaster Stephen LeDrew asked David Mulroney, former Canadian Ambassador to China, what he thought about China hosting the 2022 Olympics. Mulroney said China uses the games to make the statement that the world is coming to China because they approve of them. He also said that China likes to maintain the allegiance of the public, and the Olympics do that by presenting a spectacular staged event. He said Canadian athletes are used as pawns in order to gain the approval of the world.

There seems to be petitions available for everything … from the Olympics, cutting off taxpayer support of royals, refunding taxpayers, or scrapping retired governors general expense accounts. Canadians simply want their voices to be heard and acknowledged.

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