UCP’s resolutions reveal Jason Kenney’s true colours: he is no friend to working Albertans
EDMONTON - Jason Kenney promised jobs and an improved economy, but the resolutions going to this year’s UCP AGM show that he’s more interested in refighting old ideological battles designed to undermine working people and distract from his horrible track record as Premier of Alberta.
“Jason Kenney’s party is not interested in helping working people. Resolutions to be debated at the AGM of Kenney’s party are a hodge-podge of old conservative policies designed to suppress wages, benefit the wealthy, cut and privatize services and distract from the terrible job Kenney is doing as Premier. What’s worse, if enacted, these policies will simply heap more pain on top of the misery that Alberta’s working people are already experiencing as a result of the recession brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic and global oil-price collapse,” says Gil McGowan, president of the Alberta Federation of Labour (AFL).
McGowan made his remarks while releasing the resolutions to be debated at the annual general meeting of the United Conservative Party. The AFL obtained a copy of the resolutions in advance of the October meeting.
“There can be no economic recovery if working people fall further behind,” says McGowan. “But that’s exactly what will happen if the UCP enacts the policies outlined in these resolutions. Alberta’s labour market is one of the worst in the country with 230,000 fewer jobs now than when Kenney took office. But instead of giving working people hope for the future, these resolutions lay out a political approach that would suppress wages, limit workplace rights and gut the public services that working Albertans rely upon.”
“For example, instead of supporting good-paying jobs, Jason Kenney’s party wants to turn Alberta into Alabama-North with right-to-work laws designed to suppress wages, benefits and job security by weakening unions,” says McGowan.
“But that’s not all. Instead of stable pensions through the Canada Pension Plan, Jason Kenney’s party wants to pull the money that Albertans invest for their retirements through CPP and put it under UCP government control. And, instead of universal public health care, Jason Kenney’s party wants a privately-funded and privately-managed healthcare system that rewards the rich with queue jumping, while the rest of us are denied faster access because of our income.”
McGowan says that Alberta’s unions are fighting for working people, but he says that their AGM resolutions show that the UCP is fighting AGAINST workers.
“Alberta is going through an undeniably tough time right now, but Jason Kenney and his party are advancing a tone-deaf agenda that ignores literally all of the challenges currently confronting our province. If you just read these resolutions, you’d never know that our province is in the midst of a pandemic or that we’re struggling as a result of tectonic shifts in global energy markets or that our system for collecting revenue for public services has been exposed as a dysfunctional mess. The resolutions address literally none of these issues. Instead of hope and a plan for the future, the UCP appears intent on doubling down on a mean-spirted ideological agenda that is entirely divorced from reality and which would only make a bad situation for Albertans worse.”
Director of Communications, AFL