Canadian Retailer - Holiday 2016 - 10
RETAIL: AT ISSUE
RCC makes sure government hears the voice of retail.
ALL POLITICS IS LOCAL
Making Sure Ottawa Knows that Retail Matters.
BY HUW WILLIAMS, President of Impact Public Affairs
SHOW me a Member of Parliament who doesn't personally know
at least one retailer in their riding. You can't. And let me tell you
why: the retail industry in Canada employs more than 2.2 million
Canadians, with all 338 constituencies across the country having
a strong retail presence. There's an important saying in politics,
and it's one all retailers should live by: all politics is local. This
means that although an MP may be in Ottawa for four or five daysa-week-even if they're an important cabinet Minister-they cannot be successful if they stray too far away from the wants and
needs of the constituents they were elected to represent. This was
clearly shown in the recent election, where several Cabinet Ministers lost their seats and no longer find themselves in power.
A select few industry associations can say that they represent
a portion of every single riding in Canada. For that reason, Retail
Council of Canada (RCC) can count on a receptive audience on
Parliament Hill. Moving from awareness of an issue to generating political traction is the defining characteristic of RCC. No
Federal Government, regardless of its political stripe or beliefs,
can ignore an industry that employs more people than any other.
As I wrote in my book, Government Relations for Canadian
Associations, if an association wants to be successful in an advocacy campaign, they need to connect with the government's
agenda. Associations that swim against that current will be hard
pressed to achieve their government objectives. Changing the
direction of government is always a better strategy than trying
to halt the government's progress. Associations that propose
policy solutions that are inline with the government's direction
have a better chance of creating a win, win, win situation. The
first win is for the government, the second is for Canadians and
the third is for the association's membership. Whenever a campaign can be created to help the ruling party's political agenda,
the more easily success can be achieved.
CANADIAN RETAILER | The Loss Prevention Issue
This is why an association like RCC is so crucial in order to fight for the rights and wellbeing
of businesses, large and small, representing any
and all retail formats in every product category.
RCC's Government Relations team understands
that any issue or legislation to be fought or discussed needs to begin with the fundamentals of
the representative system that we have in place
in Canada. MPs are charged with representing
their constituents in Ottawa, and that includes
a responsibility to support the success of retail
businesses in their ridings. This is why RCC engages MPs on a local level, from coast-to-coastto-coast. When MPs are continuously reminded
about the importance of retailers in their riding,
then they will be more inclined to make policy
decisions in Ottawa that support the success of
the retail industry. It's why RCC and it's Government Relations team are always reminding
them that #RetailMatters.
For more information about RCC's Government
Advocacy work on behalf of retail members,