Six questions with Jacob Wynperle, candidate for Meadowbrook-Strathcona District

Jacob Wynperle, candidate for the Meadowbrook-Strathcona District in the City of Kingston 2022 Municipal Election. Submitted photo.

Editorial note:

Across the province, Ontarians are getting ready to cast their ballots in every city, town, and county as the 2022 Municipal Election is fast approaching. With election day on Monday, Oct. 24, 2022, Kingstonist has reached out to all candidates within the City of Kingston to create profiles allowing voters to find a brief overview of each candidate in one place. As response comes in, more and more candidate profiles will be added here, which you can access through our Municipal Election 2022 section (with the tab on the homepage), or through our ‘Candidate overview landing page.’

With 45 candidates in total for Kingston City Council alone – and with only one district acclaimed (Countryside District will once again be represented by Gary Oosterhof) and six districts without an incumbent – our goal is to provide as much information as possible leading up to the elections. Thus, we will endeavour to collect response from as many Kingston candidates as possible, with the hope of providing similar coverage for Loyalist Township, Frontenac County, and the Town of Greater Napanee moving forward. All relevant links will be available under the Municipal Election 2022 tab.

For more general information on election process in Kingston, including details on electing Board of Education Trustees, ensuring you are registered to vote, etc., visit the City of Kingston Municipal Elections webpage.

Candidate profiles are being published on our website in no particular order.

New to the political scene, Jacob Wynperle is a student at Queen’s University and came to Kingston in 2020. He is running in the Meadowbrook-Strathcona district for the 2022 municipal election, as part of the ‘People’s Platform for Kingston.’

Originally from Grimsby, Ontario, Wynperle said that, in his spare time, he studies social and political issues and helps organize tenants and feed the unhoused with the Katarokwi (Kingston) Union of Tenants.

When asked for a “fun fact”, Wynperle shared that he plays drums in a band.

How would you describe your personal political ideology and/or affiliation?

I question the knee-jerk habit to attempt to align municipal candidates with one or the other electoral party in order to look legitimate. I am a student, and a tenant—I am running with a coalition of students, tenants, and working people who believe that the Liberal Party, Conservative Party, and NDP have all played a role in creating the economic crisis facing working people today.

I would describe my ‘political ideology’ as a representative and agent of the mass of working people and students who are slowly being priced out of existence in our city—I have no allegiance to anyone or anything else.

What made you want to run in this municipal election?

The cost-of-living crisis in Kingston is why I put my name forward. The current Council and Mayor are all continuing to employ ‘supply-side’ solutions to try to solve this crisis, when that is the same logic that got us into this problem in the first place. Kingston doesn’t just need more housing of any sort, we need housing people can actually afford—public rent-geared-to-income housing.

The Mayor and Council have stuck stubbornly to the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) definition of ‘affordable,’ which is 80 per cent of market rate. Since most of them are homeowners themselves, some even landlords, they are far out of touch with the mass of working people and what their ‘affordable’ would actually mean. I am running so that I can reflect on Council the perspective of the majority of residents of Kingston, and to fight back against the well-represented rich of this city.

What are the three most common issues voters are bringing up to you as you campaign?

  1. Housing/Cost-of-living crisis.
  2. Homeless/unhoused population.
  3. Conditions of roads and volume of traffic .

What three issues are most pressing/important to address locally, in your opinion?

I would argue that the issues that can be, and must be addressed locally, are:

  1. The abolition of homelessness.
  2. The expansion of public rent-geared-to-income housing.
  3. The expansion of public transport and making it free.

What is the most pressing issue in your district?

The most pressing issue in my district—and in the city—is affordable housing. If I sound like a broken record about this problem, it’s because the more people I talk to, the more dire I realize the situation is. It’s also the keystone issue upon which so many other issues of this city rest—health care, policing costs, climate change, transportation—they’re all affected by the success or failure of housing policy.

What do you feel sets you apart from other candidates?

What sets the slate of candidates on the People’s Platform for Housing (sic) apart is that we ourselves are tenants, students, and working people—we are the ones being most negatively affected by the current crises and we have a vested interest in helping others who are disproportionately affected. We are not homeowners, we are not career politicians, we aren’t coerced or owned by developers—we have proven track records of providing material support to oppressed populations. And, by electing us together as your mayor and Council, we have the opportunity to make immediate and dramatic changes to the way this city does business, even in the face of opposition from the privileged elite.

For more information on Jacob Wynperle, candidate for Meadowbrook-Strathcona District in the 2022 municipal election, visit the People’s Platform for Kingston website, Facebook or Instagram pages.

With files from Cris Vilela.

2 thoughts on “Six questions with Jacob Wynperle, candidate for Meadowbrook-Strathcona District

  • Impressed by your comments. You are right, we need more affordable housing which the private sector will never build when a demand for high end (most profitable)still exists. Only the public sector will build for those who cannot afford more. Your fight ‘affordable housing’ helps some but not many and only if the private sector can be forced to build it. Local governments have few resources, cannot run a deficit and what it needs is huge transfers from provincial and federal government supporting co-operative and other forms of ownership. What is happening in Ontario is that the current government sees the problem only in the number, not the type, of units built so more and more large subdivisions or high density buildings are the answer and the private sector is more than willing to oblige as the latest 19 & 23 story building in Kingston downtown and the proposal to turn an urban forrest and wetland into 1600 units of which only 100 can be ‘affordable housing’.

    Keep advocating and developing your alternatives. You have a lot to offer, seem sincere and really as never before need more people to speak truth to power. Bill Jennings( logged in as my wife)

  • Regarding acclaimed candidates, why do we not have an option to NOT vote for them? It is not democratic to permit an unopposed candidate to step into their seat without knowledge of what fraction of citizens do or do not support their position.

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