Spring sitting ends with Green opposition standing up for Islanders as Dennis King’s PC government flexes its majority muscle and avoids accountability
Charlottetown, PE – The spring sitting of the legislature concluded today as Dennis King’s super-majority government rushed to close the House and start their summer vacation.
“Despite the Premier’s attempts to avoid accountability and dodge Islanders’ concerns, the Green caucus held Government’s feet to the fire and challenged its inaction on a number of issues – including Islanders’ access to healthcare, building more affordable housing, protecting farmland and our shorelines, making sure public infrastructure like hospitals and schools can keep up with our growing population, and building a safe and inclusive province,” said Third Party Leader Peter Bevan-Baker.
In the wake of the third-party review of UPEI, the Greens passed legislation that will bring Island post-secondary institutions under the Ombudsperson Act. Currently, the provincial Ombudsperson does not have jurisdiction over post-secondary institutions. This important and timely legislation will allow the Ombudsperson to review decisions, recommendations, or acts relating to public post-secondary institutions on PEI, which include UPEI, Holland College, and Collège de l’Île.
During the spring sitting, the Green Caucus also passed a number of motions including:
- Calling on government to improve long-term care and adopt the national standards for long-term care;
- Supporting the 2SLGBTQIA+ community through tangible actions, including by ensuring organizations like Pride PEI, PEERS Alliance, and PEI Transgender Network have stable, predictable and adequate multi-year operational funding and improving access to gender-affirming care and reducing out-of-pocket costs related to out-of-province care;
- Establishing a first right of refusal on multi-unit residential buildings to help protect affordable housing for Islanders;
- Improving government’s recruitment and retention of healthcare workers and;
- Calling on government to update the Child Protection Act, including incorporating the recommendations from the Child and Youth Advocate into the Act.
The Green Caucus led the charge on questioning government spending during budget debate, presented real policy solutions to the problems facing Islanders, and brought forward concerns from Islanders across the province. The Greens are showing that you don’t have to have the most members to be the most effective voice for Islanders in the Legislature.
“It doesn’t matter how many times you say you are going to hold government to account if you don’t actually do the work,” said Third Party House Leader Karla Bernard. “Islanders expect opposition to not just shout in Question Period, they want opposition MLAs to bring forward ideas that will make a positive difference in their lives and the Green caucus did just that.”