The New Democratic Party of Prince Edward Island
Past and Present
The New Democratic Party has a long and significant history on Prince Edward Island dating back over 80 years to 1936. It was then federal MP Ted Garland that inspired the formation of the CCF club in Bedeque, followed up in 1943 with a concerted Island tour by the national party to have candidates in place. History was made 8 years later when Hilda Ramsay ran as the first ever woman candidate on PEI. This is proudly remembered in our biennial Hilda Ramsay fund raising event.
The NDP PEI was founded at a convention in Charlottetown on 25 November 1961, only three months after the formation of the federal party. Leader Tommy Douglas addressed the meeting and Ian Webster was elected provincial president and Lorne Perry vice president.
Throughout the party’s history great electoral strides have been met. It was in 1971 that Hillsborough’s David Hall had the strongest support, leading to Hall becoming the provincial party’s first leader. In 1996, with Dr. Herb Dickieson as leader, the party took 7.8% of the vote leading to his seat in the legislative assembly. A significant event being the first ever the third party representation in the house.
Currently, the party is ready to make headway under the new leadership of Joe Byrne. Byrne, elected at the April 7, 2018 leadership convention, brings a life of social democratic values needed to chart the party to a prosperous future.
The NDP PEI follows key ideas an principles of social democracy. These can be defined as:
- Prioritize the production of goods and services to the social needs of individuals;
- Modify monopolistic entities through economic and social planning;
- Develop social ownership, where appropriate and feasible;
- Foster co-operative social development, through fairness and equality;
- Encourage social harmony to bring about the potential of citizens in both an individual and a collective basis.
The New Democratic Party of Prince Edward Island holds firm to the belief that the dignity and freedom of the individual is a basic right that must be maintained and extended. We are proud to be associated with the democratic socialist parties of the world and to share the struggle for peace, international co-operation and the abolition of poverty.