Alberta Minute: Freedom Convoy, Ambulance Shortages, and Protecting Due Process
Alberta Minute - Your weekly one-minute summary of Alberta politics.
This Week In Alberta:
While the Legislature is not scheduled to return until February 22nd, there are some committee meetings this week. On Tuesday, from 9:00 am to 12:00 pm, the Select Special Child and Youth Advocate Search Committee is scheduled to meet, but no agenda has been posted yet. On Thursday at 9:00 am, the Select Special Committee to Examine Safe Supply will meet. No agenda is posted for that meeting yet either.
Today is the final day of the National Governors Association annual meeting which began on Friday. Premier Jason Kenney attended the meeting with the intention of discussing national energy security, trade and cross-border supply issues, and the vaccination mandate for truckers. We wish he’d focus his attention on restrictions in Alberta too - he can repeal those at any point!
- The Provincial government postponed their plan to make people pay in order to prove their innocence in traffic court, a plan that would have ultimately rolled back the fundamental rights of Albertans. While this temporary reprieve is good news, we've launched a petition to make them drop the plan altogether. We understand that there are some inefficiencies in the justice system, but you don’t fix those by removing access to justice altogether!
Last Week In Alberta:
The freedom convoy rolled through Alberta, joining up with other groups of truckers en route to Ottawa. When they arrived in Ottawa, the convoy participants held a protest focused on ending a vaccination mandate for cross-border truckers, as well as putting an end to vaccine mandates in general across the country and internationally. Protests in Ottawa are ongoing, with Parliament due to return today.
- Contract negotiations between the government and the United Nurses of Alberta have ended and a new collective agreement has been ratified. Nurses will come under the new contract immediately as it is retroactive to 2020. Nurses will receive a 4.25% wage increase over 4 years and a lump sum payment of 1% to cover hours worked in 2021.
- It was announced that the government will create an emergency medical services committee to combat ambulance shortages in Alberta. Multiple cities including Red Deer, Calgary, Edmonton, and Fort McMurray have faced EMS difficulties this year including periods where no ambulances were available for emergencies. The committee will make some short-term suggestions, as well as report back in May with a new service plan for EMS.
The Alberta Institute doesn't accept any government funding and never will. We think you should be free to choose, for yourself, which organizations to support. If you're in a position to contribute financially, you can make a donation here.
If you're not in a position to donate, we understand, but if you appreciate our work, you can help by spreading our message. Please forward this email to your friends, follow us on Facebook and Twitter, and help make sure every Albertan knows what's going on in our province.