Joachim Stroink

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Joachim Stroink
Member of the Nova Scotia House of Assembly
for Halifax Chebucto
In office
October 8, 2013 – May 30, 2017
Preceded by Howard Epstein
Succeeded by Gary Burrill
Personal details
Born (1972-04-24) April 24, 1972 (age 45)
Montreal, Quebec
Political party Liberal
Spouse(s) April Barkhouse-Stroink

Joachim Stroink (born April 24, 1972) is a Canadian politician, who was elected to the Nova Scotia House of Assembly in the 2013 provincial election.[1] A member of the Nova Scotia Liberal Party, he represented the electoral district of Halifax Chebucto until 2017.[2]

Personal life[edit]

Stroink is married to April Barkhouse-Stroink, they live in Halifax with their children Anneke and Zofia. He is a life long resident of Halifax.

Stroink attended LeMarchant-St. Thomas Elementary School and Halifax Central Junior High (then named Cornwallis Junior High School). He attended Queen Elizabeth High School (Halifax) and King's-Edgehill School. He graduated from Saint Mary's University in 1999 with a degree in Geography.[3]

He is an avid outdoorsman enjoying cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, hiking, camping, climbing and various other activities. Stroink is also a skateboarder and has advocated for active transportation and skateboarding related infrastructure.

Community involvement[edit]

He joined a number of successful local businesses in launching a petition to save the Emera Oval after the 2011 Canada Winter Games.

Stroink also served as President of the Learning Disabilities Association of Nova Scotia as a person living with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and severe dyslexia.[4] In 2015, he floundered about on stage for Bridgeway Academy's Dancing for our Stars fundraising event to highlight the struggles of those living with ADHD and Dyslexia.[5]

He was a key figure in the development of the Blue Nose Marathon, named its Race Director in 2004, a position he held for four years, he remains a volunteer at the event.[6] He ran the full marathon in its inaugural year.

Stroink is a founding partner of the Brigadoon Village camp for children with chronic illness. He donated office space in the Trail Shop to help get the camp off the ground. He has been a member of the board and volunteer. As MLA for Halifax Chebucto he has hosted community BBQs during the Quinpool Road Business Association's annual Quinfest event with proceeds going to the camp. His primary involvement since 2014 has been as organizer of Brigaswim, a fundraising event for the camp that involves a marathon swim around Georges Island (Nova Scotia) in Halifax Harbour. Stroink came up with the idea on the heels of the Halifax Harbour clean-up.

He joined other representatives of the Government of Nova Scotia to launch the government's annual United Way fundraising campaign in September 2016 by swimming across Halifax Harbour.[7]

Stroink is also the co-founder of the iconic Not Since Moses run which takes place in the floor of the Bay of Fundy.[8]

Political career[edit]

Stroink is the MLA in the Halifax Chebucto riding in the Liberal government of Stephen McNeil. As MLA he has been active on a number of key government initiatives and issues. For example, Bill 75 and Bill 148 which legislated unionized nurses and teachers back to work.

Stroink has made the development of the Ocean Tech sector a key part of his mandate as MLA. As Chair of the Standing Committee on Economic Development.[9][10]

Stroink spearheaded a project in his constituency inspired by local municipal Participatory Budgeting programs where he sought input from constituents on the development of a community-driven Private Members' Bill coining the term Community Members' Bill.[11][12]

In 2014, when the government changed the Film Tax Credit, an economic development incentive program to promote the province's film industry which failed, Stroink served as an advocate for the government.

In 2015, Halifax area businesses spoke out when faced with commercial tax increases they deemed unfair. Stroink joined Labi Kousoulis, MLA for Halifax Citadel-Sable Island and Minister of Internal Services, in calling on Municipal Affairs Minister Zach Churchill to make changes to the tax system. The call was supported by Municipal officials and resulted in amendments to the HRM Charter that allowed changes to the Halifax Regional Municipality's commercial tax system.[13]

In 2015, the International Agency for Research on Cancer, an arm of the World Health Organisation, reported that Glyphosate, a common herbicide, was probably carcinogenic to humans. The use of the herbicide is controversial in Nova Scotia, nonetheless the Government of Nova Scotia approved Glyphosate spraying in 2016.[14] The controversy prompted Dr. Robert Strang, Nova Scotia's Chief Medical Officer of Health, to comment on the issue indicating, in his view, that spraying would have no impact on human health.[15] Despite Strang's comments, the issue remained controversial with opposition MLAs opposing the use of the herbicide in the province. Stroink challenged opposition MLAs for opposing the use of the herbicide after having approved its use in previous years.[16]

He has also been an advocate of the Select Nova Scotia campaign encouraging people to buy local and actively supporting the expansion of the program.

Gender equality[edit]

Both in and out of the legislature Stroink has been an advocate for gender equality. He has publicly supported the United Nation's He for She campaign calling on men across Nova Scotia to participate actively in the struggle for gender equality.

Stroink called on members of the Nova Scotia legislature to donate to the campaign on Pay Equity Day in 2015.[17]

Zwarte Piet controversy[edit]

In December 2013, Stroink, who is of Dutch descent, came under controversy after being photographed sitting on the lap of a man in black face dressed as Black Peter (Zwarte Piet) at a local Dutch Christmas party. He apologized for the incident.[18]

Support for retaining the controversial character remains strong in the Netherlands though there has been a significant shift in public opinion. The number of Dutch residents supporting a change in the tradition has been shown to be growing in a recent government poll.[19]

Electoral record[edit]

Nova Scotia general election, 2013
Party Candidate Votes % ±
     Liberal Joachim Stroink 4,352 49.87
     New Democratic Party Gregor Ash 3,376 38.68
     Progressive Conservative Christine Dewell 874 10.02
     Independent Michael Marshall 125 1.43

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Nova Scotia votes: Riding-by-riding results for Halifax region". Metro, October 8, 2013.
  2. ^ "Leader Gary Burrill wins Halifax Chebucto, 'returned to the New Democratic Party'". Metro. May 31, 2017. Retrieved 2017-06-09. 
  3. ^ Eight Saint Mary's Alumni Headed to Province House Saint Mary's University
  4. ^ http://www.ldans.ca/board.html
  5. ^ https://dancingforbridgeway.com/joachim-stroink
  6. ^ [1].
  7. ^ http://thechronicleherald.ca/novascotia/1395275-photos-harbour-swimmers-kick-off-united-way-campaign
  8. ^ http://thechronicleherald.ca/novascotia/1302989-not-since-moses-run-chance-%E2%80%98to-be-free%E2%80%99-for-a-day
  9. ^ http://nslegislature.ca/index.php/committees/committee_hansard/c9/ed2014feb13
  10. ^ http://nslegislature.ca/index.php/committees/committee_hansard/c9/ed2016feb25
  11. ^ http://joachimstroink.com/democracy-in-action/
  12. ^ http://thechronicleherald.ca/novascotia/1324316-public-invited-to-help-draft-mla-joachim-stroink%E2%80%99s-bill
  13. ^ http://thechronicleherald.ca/business/1265525-quinpool-road-businesses-blast-%E2%80%98ridiculous%E2%80%99-tax-increases
  14. ^ http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/nova-scotia/herbicide-spraying-forests-glyphosate-northern-pulp-1.3760549
  15. ^ http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/nova-scotia/herbicide-spraying-forest-glyphosate-clear-cut-1.3746628
  16. ^ http://www.trurodaily.com/news/local/2016/8/25/ndp-fear-mongering-liberal-says-4624908.html
  17. ^ http://nslegislature.ca/index.php/proceedings/hansard/c96/house_15apr14/#HPage3656
  18. ^ Joachim Stroink apologizes for Zwarte Piet blackface photo. CBC News, December 2, 2013.
  19. ^ http://www.dutchnews.nl/news/archives/2016/11/support-for-changing-zwarte-piet-is-growing-ministry-survey-shows/