If you’ve been having trouble sleeping lately, I don’t blame you. Politics in Alberta feels pretty daunting right now.
But there’s too much at stake to give up. The Council of Canadians has a plan that will help get the best outcome for people and planet in this provincial election, all while laying the groundwork for a just transition in Alberta – but we won’t be able to pull it off without you.
We have seen a 38% spike in hate crimes from the far-right who experts say are likely emboldened by racist rhetoric from the United Conservative Party (UCP), led by Jason Kenney, and even Trump-style fake news and calls to “Make Canada Great Again.”
And while Kenney’s UCP hasn’t released an official platform yet, what he has said on the pre-campaign trail has been harrowing.
The UCP have promised to:
- Launch “100 days of Repeal” to reduce “all regulations” by a third right after the election.
- Cut healthcare funding by 25%.
- Freeze the minimum wage increase and roll it back for certain groups of workers.
- Sell off large swathes of Crown Land in Treaty 8 to private industry.
These would all move us further from the socially, environmentally, and economically just society you and I are fighting for.
But while they are closer to these goals, Rachel Notley’s NDP have also not stepped up to provide a real plan for a transition to renewable energy. They have doubled down on the boom-bust economy of the oil sands instead. With the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change warning we have just 12 years to avoid the worst of the climate crisis, we need to be pushing hard to make adequate climate action politically possible in this province. Whether Alberta is ready or not, the rest of the world is moving on from oil.
So, yes, we have a massive challenge ahead of us! But with your help, here’s how the Council of Canadians and supporters like you throughout Alberta can start to tackle it:
1. Coordinate a big “get out the vote” push: We are mobilizing to provide ride-sharing and voter information packages to make sure as many people can get to the polls as possible. We’ll focus on youth, newcomers, and other groups who on average face more barriers to getting to the ballot box.
2. Craft a bold, cross-movement coalition ready to fight: We are building a coalition to fight for a just transition in Alberta and push the centre of discourse towards the bold progressive policies we need to start transitioning to an economy that works for all of us. By uniting the progressive movements in Alberta working on climate, health care, water, Indigenous rights, anti-racism, labour rights and more, we’ll be able to shift the discourse and mobilize for the best outcome in this election and beyond. We have already started to build an exciting coalition of partners, including the John Humphrey Centre for Peace and Human Rights, Migrante Alberta, and Climate Justice Edmonton.
3. Publish an accessible party report card: We’ll compile each parties’ platform based on what you tell us your priorities are! We’ll use the results from these SHIFT 2019 workshops and surveys to decide the criteria for the report card, and then make sure they are broadly distributed to make sure people know exactly what they’re voting for.
If you like the sound of this plan will you chip in a donation today to help kick it into high gear? You’ll be helping to counter the deep pockets of oil industry lobbyists and big party donors who want nothing more than to make sure everyday Albertans act against their own interests this election.
And we need to move fast. The writ to open this election could be announced any day now.
I know it can be really difficult to imagine an Alberta where real climate action and social equality are on the table. But I really believe it is possible. Whenever I speak with fellow Albertans in person about the need to transition to a fairer renewable economy, what that transition could look like, and how we can protect workers through it, they are overwhelmingly open to it.
And the first step is driving voters across Alberta to the ballot box in record numbers. Can you donate now to help make it happen? No contribution is too small and will make a very real difference.
Thank you for all you do to build a better future for Alberta and beyond.