GUELPH, Ontario, May 14, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Green Party Leader Mike Schreiner has joined the Co-operative Caucus, making it the first official All-Party Caucus in the province.

The announcement came at the April 30 Queen’s Park Reception, where over 100 business leaders and stakeholders from the co-operative business community gathered to meet and greet the 32 MPPs and several Ministry staff members who attended.

Organized to raise the profile of Ontario’s co-operatives within the provincial government, the annual event at Queen’s Park is an opportunity for the sector to voice the need to update the current legislative environment that constrains co-operatives from developing and thriving to their full potential.

“We are very pleased that MPP Schreiner has joined the Co-op Caucus, reaffirming that the co-operative movement is supported by all parties. He will contribute to our efforts to continue building economic and social sustainability in the province,” says Peter Cameron, Acting Executive Director of the Ontario Co-operative Association (OCA).

The Co-operative Caucus was created in 2015 as part of the Ontario Co-operative Association’s (OCA) strategy to build and strengthen relationships at Queen’s Park, while working towards legislative changes.

With the addition of Guelph MPP Mike Schreiner, the Caucus now has four Co-Chairs representing all parties, including: Randy Pettapiece (Conservative MPP, Perth—Wellington), Chris Glover (NDP MPP, Spadina--Fort York), and Nathalie Des Rosiers (Liberal MPP, Ottawa—Vanier).

Members of the OCA’s government relations committee along with other key representatives from the co-operative business community, meet twice annually over breakfast at Queen’s Park with the Caucus to discuss ideas and find solutions to co‑operative issues that all parties will support.

"Whether it's housing, clean energy, farming or finance, co-operatives make an essential contribution to building a healthy, fair and sustainable society. I am thrilled to be joining this All-Party Co-operative Caucus and to represent a community like Guelph, where co-operatives are at the forefront of positive change," says Schreiner.

At the April 30 Reception, the co-operative sector celebrated the provincial government’s recent commitment to reviewing all the feedback they received from co-operatives through the recent consultation process, and working with our sector to propose amendments to the legislation. They were also thanked for moving the incorporation of co-operatives from (the now defunct) Financial Services Commission of Ontario, to the Ministry of Government and Consumer Services.

FOR MORE INFORMATION

Contact Peter Cameron 1.888.745.5521 x 23 pcameron@ontario.coop

ABOUT THE ONTARIO CO-OPERATIVE ASSOCIATION (OCA) Co-operatives are a different kind of business model that are driven by people, planet and profit. OCA supports, develops, educates and advocates for Ontario’s 1,500+ co-operative businesses. We exist to strengthen and unite the co-operative movement and we believe that co-operatives are the solution to creating stronger communities, which help to build a better world. Visit us at http://www.ontario.coop for more information

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/f96e6b5a-eb7d-4431-941b-6dfae407c8a6