NDP Appointment Reeks of Patronage

NAIT Board of Governors appointment echoes Tory patronage appointments

Ray Martin’s appointment as Chair of the Board of Governors of the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology (NAIT) reeks of NDP political patronage. 

“This does not pass the smell test,” says Swann. “The NDP are clearly continuing the Tory legacy of posting party insiders to important public positions.”  

The Order in Council, approved on March 7th, appoints Ray Martin as a member and designates him as chair of the Board of Governors of the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology, for a term to expire on March 6, 2020.

Alberta Liberals have been staunch advocates of the creation of an independent appointments commission that would ensure these appointments are based solely on merit and not personal or political connections.

“The NDP has only made symbolic changes to the appointments process, which amounts to advertising the position on the government’s job board,” says Swann, “It still lacks the necessary independence and transparency that only an arms-length organization would afford.”

Swann is calling on the government to put an immediate stop to political patronage by establishing an independent commission to oversee the appointments process.


International Women's Day 2017 Statement from David Swann

Alberta Liberal Leader David Swann made the following statement on the floor of the Alberta Legislature for International Women’s Day:

“Today we celebrate the achievements made in gender equality over the years. Just over a hundred years ago, women did not have the right to vote. Even fifty years ago, the franchise was still being withheld from First Nations women.

“Today women hold one in three seats in this House. While there is still much progress that needs to be made on many women’s issues, this is an encouraging trend, and I look forward to seeing it continue into the future.

“The theme for this year’s International Women’s Day is Be Bold for Change. Across Alberta, Canada, and the world, individuals and organizations are honouring this day by encouraging women to be bold, and by doing so – hopefully with the full support of men – creating real change.

“I particularly want to acknowledge the work of Ask Her, a group in Calgary that is working to encourage greater representation of women in municipal politics. Ask Her recognizes that one of the reasons so few women hold public office is that they are too rarely asked to run. As such, they encourage Calgarians to seek out strong, well-qualified women in their communities and ask them to take leadership roles.

“This year, Ask Her will ask 20 women to run for Calgary City Council. At present only two of the City’s fourteen Councillors are women, a meagre 14%. Ask Her aims to achieve 50% female representation on Council after this fall’s municipal election on October 21st, and they have my full support in this.

“Our province – our country – our society is made better when strong, passionate, and engaged women become involved in their communities and bring their voices to the table. This International Women’s Day, we have much to celebrate in the progress women have made in civil society. I encourage women – especially young women – to continue to press forward, be bold, and take the lead in creating change.”

Emergency Debate on Opioid Crisis

Swann calls for emergency debate to address opioid crisis

Alberta Liberal Leader Dr. David Swann is requesting government business be suspended on Monday for an emergency debate on his call to declare a state of emergency in response to Alberta’s rapidly expanding opioid crisis.

“Every day, another Alberta family loses someone to the scourge of opioid addiction and overdose, and yet the NDP government still refuses to treat this situation with the urgency that it so clearly deserves,” says Swann. “I am calling on my fellow legislators to come together and give the government clear direction on this overarching measure, including substantial new resources, which will have a significant and immediate impact in the battle against opioids.”

“It’s time to put partisanship aside, and have a thorough and thoughtful debate on this terrible crisis that is ending lives and destroying families.”

The call follows the release of the third quarter opioid report from 2016 that showed a deepening of the crisis and a continuing, dramatic rise in opioid-related deaths

A Notice of Standing Order 30 was filed with the Office of the Speaker yesterday afternoon, granting Dr. Swann the ability to present the motion after Question Period on Monday, March 6th, 2017.