Paula Bigger (candidate, and former Minister of Transportation), Richard Savidant (volunteer and event organizer) and Shirley Pierce (Advocacy Program Officer for Prince Edward Island) at the Summerside Branch all-candidates meet and greet during the recent provincial election.
April saw two provincial elections – one in Alberta on April 16 and the other on Prince Edward Island on April 23. Both provinces elected conservative governments, raising the national count of conservative provinces across the country to seven out of ten. On May 16, voters in Newfoundland Labrador will also head to the polls.
For all these elections, the National Association of Federal Retirees developed top priorities and key questions for candidates in consultation with local volunteers. These documents, along with the latest issues of Sage magazine, were delivered to candidates in these provinces to raise awareness on the issues and on the Association.
In Alberta, Advocacy Program Officer Brian Emdin worked with our volunteers across the province to deliver our message to candidates. Lou Levesque, President of our Lakeland Branch, stood up at his local all-candidates meeting to ask if the parties would commit to maintaining the Coverage for Seniors Program (Alberta Blue Cross) and provide universal, accessible coverage that is not income tested and premium free. In Edmonton, Branch President Ross Gillespie took off his Federal Retirees hat and participated in a different way, serving on election day as a Deputy Returning Officer for Elections Alberta.
On Prince Edward Island, Advocacy Program Officer Shirley Pierce was able to quickly rally a team to deliver packages to all candidates in the province and organize two meet and greet events. Thanks to the hard work of the team, both events were incredibly successful, drawing a crowd of candidates to participate and many more members to hear from them.
In Newfoundland, Advocacy Program Officer Winston Fiander is leveraging his relationships with the Newfoundland & Labrador Coalition of Pensioners, Retirees and Seniors Organizations and the Newfoundland and Labrador Public Sector Pensioners Association to ensure Federal Retirees members can participate in a variety of townhalls hosted by the groups across the province. Members have been provided with questions to ask candidates at these events, or if they encounter them elsewhere on the campaign trail.
With a federal election coming up on October 21, 2019, Federal Retirees are preparing a campaign to continue to put issues important to seniors on the political agenda. Make sure you hear about what’s happening first by signing up for e-mail updates here.