Alberta NDP leader Rachel Notley. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh)

Alberta NDP leader Rachel Notley. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh)

Alberta NDP leader Rachel Notley: We’re ready to work for you

That’s what I want Albertans to know as the Alberta NDP forms the largest Official Opposition in Alberta’s history. My party has 38 MLAs eager to represent all Albertans and hold the government accountable while also continuing to propose new ideas and solutions, as Albertans asked us to do.

Strong, diverse, and talented, our Opposition will advocate for Albertans, urban and rural. Our priorities are your priorities.

We will push for better health care, especially in rural Alberta, where service closures are far too common. We will raise the alarm on the continued rise in emergency room wait times in our cities, and call for a better plan to stop more physicians from leaving the province, and leaving their patients.

We will push to hire more teachers and support staff. Right now, Alberta children are trying to learn in the most overcrowded classrooms in Canada — that jeopardizes our future and it must change. We will also call for an immediate rollback of the post-secondary tuition increases that are planned for this fall. Failure to act on these priorities will make it harder for Albertans in smaller communities to earn the skills they need.

And we will go further to save Albertans money, pressuring the government to cap out-of-control utility bills and address the crisis developing in housing and rent. We have already seen record-high food bank usage and household debt. In the face of record inflation, we cannot allow inequality to continue to grow.

We believe rural Alberta will be best served by having a diversity of representatives, but it is also clear that we have more work to do to reach rural Albertans and present them with a plan that speaks to their priorities.

In the coming months and years, our new Caucus will reach out to rural Albertans about what matters to them: creating good-paying jobs in strong, rural communities, growing our agricultural opportunities, protecting our mountains and headwaters, and fixing rural health care.

We’ll travel this province pillar to post, seeking to earn your trust by listening to your ideas and your hopes for the future.

It’s time to start solving problems and delivering better government across the province.

My number one priority is to do the work Albertans have asked of us. That is our intention as a Caucus and that certainly is my plan, as Leader. Albertans will have the strongest and most effective Official Opposition they’ve ever seen.

You deserve nothing less.

Rachel Notley is the NDP leader and current Alberta Legislature leader of the official opposition.