MLA report May 16

Spring has sprung in Alberta, and the winds of change are blowing once again. 

As your MLA, I strive to put the thoughts and concerns of our local families and communities first. Since being elected in 2015, I have made listening to you my top priority. The reason is simple: I believe that no single leader, party, or special interest has a monopoly on good ideas.

It seems that listening has become a lost art in modern politics, and as a result, the disconnect between government and citizens continues to grow. The sad fact today is that most Albertans have lost faith in the failed leadership of Premier Kenney.

 It’s easy to see why. Since he was elected on a platform of grassroots democracy and servant leadership, Premier Kenney has quickly lapsed back into the worst habits of the former PC government. 

 Albertans are smart. They recognize this Premier’s political tactics for what they are. That’s why so many have lost faith in the UCP party’s leadership review, not to mention local nominations. 

 As a two-term MLA and former Minister, I have deep concerns about the conduct of the Premier and his inner circle. I, as an MLA, am routinely asked to put the leader’s interest ahead of you, something that I’ve refused to do. The culture of cronyism, bullying, and hypocrisy is stronger now than ever. Whistleblowers are vilified, and those who dare to question the leader are demeaned. The routine bullying behind closed doors would never be acceptable anywhere in the private sector. 

For Alberta to achieve its true potential, change is needed. Allow me to explain why.

 It’s no secret that I love the unique character of my province. Alberta has been one of the best places in the world for those seeking hope and opportunity.

From the first people who walked, played, and worked this land since time immemorial to the pioneers who arrived by wagon train to those arriving today by jet plane, our province has greatly benefitted from folks seeking a fresh start for themselves and their families. 

 Every generation of newcomers brought unique perspectives that have strengthened our province.

 To succeed in the 21stCentury, we need leadership that understands and values these perspectives and empowers Albertans through grassroots democratic engagement. We need local solutions for local problems. Most of all, we need a government that trusts and respects Albertans to make the right decisions for our families and our communities.

 A centralized, regimented, leader-centric government never has and never will work in Alberta because it runs contrary to our history and provincial character.

In short, Alberta is more than a Jason Kenney province, and if the UCP is to succeed moving forward, it needs to become more than a Jason Kenney party.

 Alberta has given me so much. I am compelled to give back. I have an obligation to put you first, and I will not standby and allow Albertans to be deprived of an ethical, compassionate, human-focused alternative in 2023. 

 To my fellow Albertans: you are the change, and as a force of nature, once those prairie winds start to howl, there is no stopping the winds of change.

As always, we love to hear from you. 

About the author

Leela Aheer

Leela Aheer

Leela Aheer was elected to the Alberta Legislature in the riding of Chestermere-Rocky View. She currently resides in Chestermere and looks forward to using her roots in the community along with her experience in business, and her passion for her community to effectively advocate for her constituents in the Alberta Legislature.

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