Statement from Alberta Liberal Leader Swann on International Women’s Day:
Today is International Women’s Day, a recognition as important now as when first celebrated over a hundred years ago.
This year Canada’s theme for International Women’s Day is ‘Women’s Empowerment Leads to Equality’. Empowering women through freedom from violence, education and financial independence enriches all of society and can make the transition to equality that much quicker.
As a doctor and then MLA, I have had the great fortune to listen to many uplifting stories from women who have empowered themselves to overcome immense obstacles. Sometimes empowerment is through education, sometimes through community support and sometimes through sheer, dogged determination.
International Women’s Day also reminds us that the obstacles shouldn’t be so immense.
Sometimes it is our institutions which create obstacles. Just this month we saw the City of Edmonton appoint only one woman out of 13 general managers. In the boardrooms of Canada, too, gains made towards equality seem stunted. To be fair, there has been improvement, with many fine women in executive positions. Still, Justin Trudeau set the example for all of Canada when naming a gender equal cabinet.
On behalf of myself and the Liberal Opposition, I wish you all the best on International Women’s Day.
Alberta Liberal Leader David Swann commends the Alberta Medical Association for initiating discussions on reducing health care costs
David Swann commended the Alberta Medical Association for its willingness to explore new options for Alberta’s health system.
“This is historic,” said Swann after a phone call with the Alberta Medical Association president Dr. Carl Nohr. “The AMA has come forward to initiate discussions with the Health Minister on how doctors can be part of the solution to the current crisis in the Alberta Health System.”
Dr. David Swann, a physician himself, co-chaired the recently released Alberta Report on Mental Health and Addictions. In preparing the report, Dr. Swann and the panel engaged in months of consultations with Albertans regarding the health system and how it could be fixed. While the panel was focused on mental health and addictions, there was considerable overlap regarding Alberta Health System as a whole.
“There is absolutely no doubt that the Alberta Health System is close to failure in many areas,” Swann stated. “Primary care is of particular concern. The fee-for-service model promotes volume not quality and does not provide the incentives for team based and preventive health care. Changes to our primary care system are essential to improving access, quality and cost effectiveness.”
“A health system which costs less money, provides better care and offers its employees a positive work environment is definitely possible,” Swann concluded. “It’s been done in other parts of the world and Albertans working together can do it here.”
Calgary, AB (March 1, 2016):
Alberta Liberal Leader David Swann is appalled that Alberta Works is turning away large numbers of people in need due to a lack of staffing.
“I’ve heard from constituents about being turned away by Alberta Works, not because they were ineligible but because Alberta Works is understaffed,” Swann said. “News reports yesterday confirm this and I’ll be looking for Minister of Human Services Irfan Sabir to get personally involved.”