Six questions with Joseph Dowser, candidate for Kingscourt-Rideau District

Joseph Dowser, candidate for the Kingscourt-Rideau District in the 2022 City of Kingston 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.

Joseph Dowser is the current Chair of the Kingston Area Taxi Commission (KATC), works in restaurant operations and management, and said he is ready to represent residents in the Kingscourt-Rideau district on Kingston City Council.

As resident of the district, Dowser enjoys the outdoors, visiting museums, assisting friends with projects, advocating for tenants who do not have a voice, and helping those in need.

Originally from Mississauga, Dowser shared, “I come from a family that practically started in the original Taxi Industry in Toronto Township (now known as Mississauga) and I basically grew up in one. My grandfather was close friends with Hazel McCallion, other politicians, and public members, so I would say my interests in serving my community is part of my DNA!”

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

My views are an amalgam of the best of the main political parties. I support those who cannot support themselves and champion responsible spending on council. In terms of the environment, I believe each child in Kingston should have a tree – our community is almost deforested. And I believe we should be building more towers in Kingston and use the density to revitalize Kingscourt-Rideau. My views around the horseshoe at Council will be made based on the best decisions for Kingston residents and not those of a particular political perspective.

What made you want to run in this municipal election?

As a resident of the “Heights,” I have become frustrated with how this significant part of Kingston seems to be neglected and ignored. Many of our residents are marginalized based on their street address. Too many residents in our community continue to struggle and we need a strong voice on council to champion their concerns. I want to be their voice, and that is why I am running.

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

  • Seem to have the last roads in Kingston to be cleared of snow or be repaired
  • Garbage on the streets and our parks are old
  • No one seems to care about the Kingscourt-Rideau part of the City – ignored and forgotten

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

  • Renters/Tenant Rights – we need to build more affordable rental apartments and homes.
  • Clean, Safe Parks, and Natural Greenspaces – very few new trees are planted in our district while many are cut down. We can grow while preserving the environment.
  • Roads, Sidewalks, and Increased Services – we have sidewalks and roads in need of repair and maintenance. Kingscourt-Rideau needs and deserves a fair share of infrastructure investment and maintenance. “We are tired of being last on the list…”

What is the most pressing issue in your district?

Feeling respected and heard when residents raise concerns – so many ask me why they should bother to vote when nothing seems to change – I tell the I am not a career politician and will commit myself to serving full-time and they are supportive.

What do you feel sets you apart from other candidates?

Many things set me apart from other candidates, but most importantly, I am a proud resident of the Heights, I share their same lived experiences, and know the struggles we face in our community.

I will also treat this important position as a Full-Time job and commitment, this is not a part-time “hobby job,” or side-hustle. My focus will be on the residents and community of Kingscourt-Rideau, putting District 7 interests first.

It is important that our voices and our values are heard at Council from someone who resides in Kingscourt-Rideau, someone who comes from the people and is for the people.

For more information on Joseph Dowser, candidate for Kingscourt-Rideau District in the 2022 municipal election, visit his website or Facebook page. He can be reached over the phone at (613) 817-4756 and by email at [email protected].

With files from Cris Vilela.

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