Saskatchewan, our home, is a province that has always given me so much hope. I meet inspiring new people here every day. So many of you, members of the SGP, are individuals who I’ve been inspired by. You’ve told me your stories and expressed how you feel a connection to our shared Green Values that link us with other Provincial Green parties, the Green Party of Canada, and the Global Greens movement.
Our province has a lot of pressing issues unfolding right now. Poverty, one of the most pressing, is a crushing reality for so many. Our message of a Guaranteed Liveable Income resonates with everyone I talk to. As I listen to people, this issue in particular, really gets to the heart of what we want to see in our society, that is, everyone living with dignity and ending homelessness and poverty.
We live in a province where studies have shown we are well suited to move forward with solar and wind technology for our energy needs. Instead the SaskParty government, with the tacit approval of the NDP opposition, are moving ahead with plans to bring in experimental, expensive and risky Small Modular Nuclear Reactors (SMR’s). The Saskatchewan Green Party is the only political party in this province voicing strong opposition to this plan. We continue to push for real climate action at this critical point in time.
Our Healthcare is being privatized piecemeal by the sitting Provincial government, our medical system is crumbling, and rural healthcare is in crisis mode. Prime Minister Trudeau just met with all the Canadian Premiers regarding federal healthcare funding to the provinces. While Trudeau is promising an increase in federal healthcare transfers to the provinces by $196 billion over the next 10 years, only about one-quarter of that is previously unexpected money, the rest was actually already promised and budgeted for.
It’s worth pointing out that besides funding issues, Saskatchewan’s Healthcare problems also revolve around a lack of doctors, nurses, and specialists. The list of people I personally know who don’t have a family doctor right now is truly horrifying. So we need to see a plan for this money to source people we need in our province, and bolster Public Healthcare. We need strong Green voices in the Legislature holding this SaskParty government to account and to ensure that these increased federal funds will not make their way into the hands of private healthcare corporations.
These are just a few of the many issues besetting our Province right now. As we continue to mobilize and prepare for the 2024 Provincial election we’re looking for like-minded individuals to help us turn things around in this province. If you feel moved to get involved and help with policy development, being a candidate or financial agent, or volunteering in other ways, you are needed! Please reach out, there are many ways your volunteer time can be put to good use.
On the issue of election readiness, we do need to inform you of a recent decision by Elections Saskatchewan to increase the nomination fee from $100 to $500 per candidate. We get these fees back after an election upon successful completion of each candidate's financial campaign paperwork, however, this is a significant jump in the funds needed to prepare for the election. If you are able to help by way of renewing your membership, making a monthly or one-time donation, or otherwise helping to build our 2024 election account, your financial support would be greatly appreciated at this time.
On the topic of fundraising, we are looking for a Fundraising Coordinator to organize events such as suppers, garage sales, art auctions, etc. to help the party with our fundraising needs to meet the demands of the upcoming election period. If you feel this falls within your skill set or you would be interested in sitting on the fundraising committee but not being the lead, you are also needed. Please reach out to volunteer.
I am grateful for the community we have together and I look forward to connecting with all of you. I’m always happy when you reach out by email, phone or social media. Thank you for being part of this movement for change.
Naomi Hunter, Leader of the Saskatchewan Green Party