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New tool launched to shine light on ethnic media coverage of election issues

Andrew Griffith, left to right, Mirems Editor-In-Chief Silke Reichrath and President Andrew Machalski pose for a photo in Ottawa on Monday June 17, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld

OTTAWA — A new tool launching today will help voters learn what federal issues are resonating in ethnic media and the potential effect on voting in this fall’s election.

Andrew Griffith, a former director general with the Immigration Department, has partnered with Mirems — a firm that monitors and translates stories from over 800 ethnic media outlets.

Together, they created a website called Diversityvotes.ca, that ties comprehensive statistics about Canada’s minority communities with ethnic media stories.

Griffith says the data will provide riding-by-riding context about who is consuming multi-lingual news stories and quantify how their opinions could influence individual races.

Andres Machalski, president of Mirems, says he hopes the initiative will allow new and native-born Canadians to have a better understand the political issues being discussed and how they resonate among different ethnic groups.

The two creators say it could also shine a light on politicians or parties that target messages to individual minority groups in the hopes of winning votes in the October election.

The Canadian Press