New Democratic Party candidate Colleen Henning has looked to clear up some perceptions among the Lloydminster constituency during her campaign trail.
She said a lot of residents have inquired about the NDP’s stance on oil.
“Some people believe that the NDP is sort of anti-oil or anti-pipeline, which of course we are not, we are actually pro-pipeline, we believe pipelines are still the safest way to get oil to the markets.”
Henning mentioned the party is in favour of balanced energy policy to “tap in” to other clean energy sources in the future such as geothermal.
“We would like to get into other types of energy, so that we can sort of stop the boom and bust cycle in the province when as well as taking care of the environment. We are not in any way against oil. We know that we still need that, and Saskatchewan still needs that.”
On Monday, the Saskatchewan Party called out Regina Elphinstone-Centre NDP candidate Meara Conway for a social media post made against the oil sector in 2018.
The allegedly deleted post referred to the oil sands as “a f—ing nightmare period” and spoke against the Trans Mountain pipeline.
Henning said those following the “sensational” posts online may be confused about the party’s take after these comments.
“She made those comments, some time ago, before she was a candidate. Her thinking has evolved. We all learn and grow and change. She has said clearly that she is on board with the NDP policy now.”
On Monday, party leader Ryan Meili expressed the NDP’s support for the energy industry in the province and that all candidates have agreed to the party policy before becoming a candidate.
Conway also released a comment on Monday stating Meili’s clear thoughts on the support for the oil and gas sector. She stated she was proud of his balanced approach to create more job for energy sector workers.
After door-knocking and phone calls with constituents, Henning said they also spoke on the confidence in the school divisions reopening plans, and concerns with rural healthcare.
Henning said a”chronic” issue in Lloydminster is the lack of doctors for residents.
“We plan to invest in an additional $10 million to address chronic short staffing and recruitment in rural health care. We want to reopen rural emergency rooms that were closed by Scott Moe. We want to invest in rural health infrastructure.”
She states the NDP looks to restore the health care system in Saskatchewan after years of cuts.
“The funding we plan to put in will bring in 100 more doctors 150 more registered nurses 300 more licensed practical nurses, and 500 continuing care assistance in place across the province.”
To boost the province’s economy, Henning also spoke on the NDP’s Sask. First Plan to prioritize hiring Saskatchewan companies and workers first.
“I’ve learned that many people are not aware that the Sask Party has historically made a habit out of giving major government construction projects to companies from outside Saskatchewan. In fact, every one of the 10 biggest projects that were built under the Sask. Party was given to an out of province company.”
She states this will be a big boom in Lloydminster as construction is a significant industry in the city.
The NDP is also committing $5 million to address overcrowded classrooms and $10 million for mental health initiatives in schools, which is an issue Henning has focused on.
The party also looks to create a rural education task force to find what residents believe is needed in their areas.
Henning is running against incumbent Colleen Young with the Saskatchewan Party and newly announced Buffalo Party of Saskatchewan candidate Steve Gessner for the Lloydminster seat on October 26th.