Throne speech looks to the future
Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 01/12/2021 (546 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
Last week, Manitoba’s Legislature resumed for a throne speech that outlined the government’s priorities for the coming year. It was a rare and historic moment as a female lieutenant-governor read a speech representing Manitoba’s first female-led government, in a Legislature overseen by a female clerk.
An Indigenous drummer welcomed Lt.-Gov. Janice Filmon, who subsequently read the prepared speech for about 30 minutes, giving Manitobans a preview of Premier Stefanson’s style and priorities.
There was much good news for local residents who will be able to engage a premier and government listening and acting on a number of important issues. For the first time in months, the Legislature galleries welcomed reduced-capacity guests including grand chiefs sitting with the premier’s family. Reconciliation featured figuratively and visibly in the opening moments of the throne speech.
Predictably, challenges surrounding COVID-19 featured, too. A new nursing shortage strategy was announced with a goal of 400 additional nursing seats and job offers for every nursing graduate, plus extra programs for northern communities. Surgery and diagnostic testing backlogs were a stated priority, and a commitment was made to “modify, enhance and implement a renewed seniors’ strategy” which includes “every recommendation of the Stevenson review.”
Social issues including family violence, mental health, disability supports and homelessness also received commitments to action.
Economic growth aligned with local education and international recruitment must continue, along with efforts to improve international credential recognition and grow Manitoba’s provincial nominee program. Other commitments were signalled for infrastructure projects, including an intent to secure agreement on Winnipeg’s North End Water Treatment Plant.
You can review the entire speech from the throne at www.gov.mb.ca/thronespeech/index.html
As I listened, I thought of the people I know and serve, of individuals, families and businesses for whom the priorities and actions of our government over the coming year will make a real difference.
Conservatives are often thought of as fiscally minded only and. certainly, financial matters are critical to the proper running of any government. But good conservative governments do not only need good fiscal policy but good social policy, too. That balance was laid out in last Tuesday’s throne speech, a balance I hear as I talk with hundreds of residents in our area. Such balance is no easy task, and the throne speech’s closing words are a call to humility and hard work:
“I leave you now to the faithful performance of your many duties and trust that in meeting them, you may have the guidance of Divine Providence in all your deliberations.”
May that be so, and may the people of our area and province be well served by these efforts.
I certainly pledge to do my part. If you have questions about government resources or programs, please call me at 204-289-4545 or email firstname.lastname@example.org, my staff or I would be honoured to assist you in any way we can.
Rossmere constituency report
Andrew Micklefield is PC MLA for Rossmere and the government whip for the Province of Manitoba.