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.

Increase Funding for Metta Clinic

Increased funding for Metta Clinic necessary to support transgender youth

Calgary, AB (February 15, 2017): Alberta Liberal Leader Dr. David Swann is urging Health Minister Sarah Hoffman to support transgender and gender diverse youth by increasing funding to the Metta Clinic.

The Metta Clinic at the Alberta Children’s Hospital in Calgary is one of the few resources available for transgender youth in Alberta. The clinic only receives enough funding to operate for one day a month, adding up to a meagre two weeks per year.

The growing demand for the clinic’s services has resulted in wait times for access to care of almost three years, during which time, these youth are at risk of severe mental health challenges, suicidal and self-harming behaviours, and threats of harassment and abuse.

“These wait times are simply unacceptable,” says Swann. “The kind of support that the Metta Clinic provides is exactly what these youth need at such a critical time in their physical, mental and social development.”

“I look forward to a promise of increased funding for this important work in the upcoming provincial budget.”

Alberta Liberals are proud supporters of the LGBTQ community, recently championing the issue of making gay-straight alliances (GSAs) mandatory in schools where students request them.

Swann is now calling on the NDP government to take the next step in improving the lives of Alberta’s transgender and gender diverse youth by increasing funding for this important dedicated clinical support.

Sexual and Reproductive Health Awareness Day

David Swann statement on Sexual and Reproductive Health Awareness Day

Calgary, AB (February 12, 2017): David Swann released the following statement to mark Sexual and Reproductive Health Awareness Day:

“Our sexual health is something that we don’t like to discuss, yet is an important part of our overall well-being. Healthy sexual attitudes through open discussion and greater understanding of sexual consent at earlier ages are critically needed.

Safe sex practices are very much needed to prevent unwanted pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections and there is no shame in seeking out medical treatment.

“We need more open attitudes to healthy sexuality in our province, but the first step comes from reducing the stigma.”