Alberta economist provides perspective on misleading info in government budget consultation materials

For immediate release · October 22, 2020 11:04 AM

EDMONTON - The Alberta government has begun consultations for the next provincial budget, set to be released in February 2021. A key part of the consultation is a survey which asks Albertans to respond to several questions about budget priorities. However, the background information given for the survey and the consultations as a whole contains information that is either given without context or out of context in order to direct the thinking of respondents to the answers the government wants to receive.

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New charter school shows government taking care of private interests at expense of public education

For immediate release · October 09, 2020 11:31 AM

EDMONTON - The Alberta provincial government has given the green light to the first new charter school in 13 years after the Black Gold public school division shuttered a rural elementary school in June 2020.

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Alberta Seniors Deserve Better this International Day of Older Persons

For immediate release · October 01, 2020 10:00 AM

This October 1st marks the 30th anniversary of the International Day of Older Persons. This year, as we contend with the ongoing upheaval caused by the COVID-19 global health crisis, we must also bear witness to the suffering caused by the long-standing failures of our seniors’ care system. 

Seniors have suffered the greatest impact of the COVID-19 pandemic worldwide, and Alberta is no exception. To date 97% of COVID-related deaths have been Albertans aged 60 or older, including 165 residents in continuing care. In July, the Royal Society of Canada found that 81% of COVID-19 deaths nationwide were residents of long-term care homes—a rate far outpacing other countries. Further, the worst impacts have occurred in for-profit facilities, which have been found to have had “more extensive outbreaks and more deaths” than public facilities. COVID-19 has exposed the many shortcomings of our seniors’ care system, borne of decades of privatization and the inequity that perpetual cost-cutting has wrought. What we are seeing now was decades in the making.

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Provincial government still refusing to fund improvements to classroom conditions and safety as students head back to school

For immediate release · September 03, 2020 9:40 AM

EDMONTON -  Despite last week’s announcement of $262.8 million in federal funding to help re-open Alberta schools safely, public education advocates are still ringing the alarm about conditions in Alberta’s classrooms. The 2002 Alberta Commission on Learning (ACOL) set targets for school class sizes that the province has consistently failed to meet.

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New handout to corporations will worsen province’s already-severe revenue shortage

For immediate release · June 29, 2020 1:41 PM

As a part of the Alberta government’s economic recovery plan, the province’s corporate tax rate is being cut by two percent, from 10 percent to 8 percent, as of July 1. Premier Kenney justified the move as a way to increase economic activity and create jobs, neither of which have been proven effects of such a change.

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Choice in Education Act a big win for private and wealthy interests, a loss for the rest of us

For immediate release · May 28, 2020 4:03 PM

EDMONTON - The Alberta government has introduced its much-anticipated Choice in Education Act, which entrenches public subsidies of private schools in legislation and facilitates expansion of charter schools and home schooling. The changes represent a further fragmentation of the province’s delivery of education and come as funding cuts continue to devastate public schools, with growing class sizes and diminishing levels of classroom supports.

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Public transit is an essential service and requires public investment

For immediate release · May 20, 2020 4:13 PM

EDMONTON - While Don Iveson, the mayor of Edmonton, has retracted a statement that suggested that public transit might not operate in the city throughout the summer, two advocacy organizations are still ringing the alarm about the chronic underfunding and cuts to public services that have resulted in this dire situation.

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UCP budget deepens cuts to public services as tax gap worsens

For immediate release · February 27, 2020 4:26 PM

The Alberta government has released its provincial budget, which continues the previous budget's direction of significant cuts in nearly every area of public services, while ignoring the gap between Alberta and every other province in tax revenue generated.

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Throne Speech full of government spin to justify cuts and handout to the wealthy

For immediate release · February 25, 2020 3:51 PM

EDMONTON - The Alberta Throne Speech was delivered today, and it contained several problematic or misleading statements related to public services and spending, including that the government plans to “protect front-line services” by maintaining or increasing spending on core services “to record high levels.”

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“Albertans deserve quality health care” is the rallying cry aboard the People’s Bus

For immediate release · February 13, 2020 1:23 PM

EDMONTON - Today, dozens of concerned Albertans are gathering on The People’s Bus, chartered by Friends of Medicare and Public Interest Alberta. The bus will be travelling from Edmonton to Calgary, making a stop in Red Deer, to canvass the constituency of the Minister of Health, Tyler Shandro. The groups are concerned about deep cuts and privatization the provincial government is imposing on Alberta’s health care and seniors’ care systems. 

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