Treaty 1 Territory, Métis Homeland, Winnipeg, MB - Manitoba Liberals say the provincial Throne Speech is lacking urgency on a series of issues that Manitobans are currently facing.
Dougald Lamont, Manitoba Liberal Leader and MLA for St. Boniface, said there are many issues that have been crises for years in Manitoba that should have had firm commitments.
"The new Premier had an opportunity to show Manitobans that she's listening by outlining a change of direction from the previous Pallister government, but instead we're getting more of the same plan to plan," said Dougald Lamont, Manitoba Liberal Leader and MLA for St. Boniface. "And that is simply not good enough."
As one example, the PCs have been talking about creating a task force for backlogged surgeries for months, yet the throne speech made no commitment on a timeline for the 136 000 + Manitobans waiting for surgeries and procedures.
The Throne Speech talks about supporting Indigenous communities but makes no mention of returning the $338 Million of Federal Special Allowance for children in care that was taken and put into general revenue by PC and NDP governments.
Lamont said the ongoing University of Manitoba Faculty Association (UMFA) strike is affecting professors, students, and the economy. Stefanson mentions a new funding model for post-secondary, while not committing to allowing fair bargaining with Universities, or meddling with Crown Corporations.
"The province must assist post-secondary institutions to offer competitive salaries as they are some of the worst paid in English-speaking North-American institutions," said Lamont. "The University of Manitoba is essential to our pandemic recovery."
Another major crisis that lacked urgency and commitment in the Throne Speech is climate change. It is unclear who from the Provincial Government, if anyone, attended the climate summit. Commitments on making Manitoba more sustainable are almost completely missing from the Throne Speech.