Ryan Meili, the leader of the Saskatchewan New Democratic Party, is taking advantage of a break in legislature to travel the province, and one of his earliest stops this week was in Meadow Lake and surrounding communities on Tuesday, June 5.
He was elected the head of the party earlier this year, and said it's his mission to get to as many communities around the province as possible. He was joined by Athabasca MLA Buckley Belanger.
During this visit, Meili met with residents and leaders of Green Lake, Flying Dust First Nation, Meadow Lake Tribal Council, the City of Meadow Lake and local NDP members.
Some discussion topics he heard about were renewable energy, education, and health care among others.
“As a team, we’re out in rural Saskatchewan making it really clear how important it is,” Meili said. “It’s not only the economic engine, but the community life in this province is very much based in rural Saskatchewan. We want people to know we care and are ready to support them.”
Both he and Belanger said they would like to see an NDP candidate come forward in Meadow Lake.
“It’s been very good to have our leader here,” Belanger said. “People really share with Ryan their experience and their aspirations as a region, and I think it’s really important for our leader to hear that.”
Meili said the overall goal is to encourage health, given his background of family medicine. He said people feel healthy when they have a decent job, a chance for education, access to safe housing, nutritious food, and access to health care support.
“In opposition, I point out the flaws of the current government,” Meili said. “But as a party, we also try to come up with ways to make things better. Whether that’s increasing minimum wage, or working towards pharmacare program, so people don’t have to choose between paying rent and getting the medication that keeps them healthy.”
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