Alberta Liberals say it’s a bad decision by the NDP Government to drop Associate Health Minister from Cabinet

Alberta Liberal Leader David Khan and Alberta Liberal MLA Dr. David Swann issue this release on the NDP government dropping the Associate Health Minister from Cabinet:

Khan stated, “The health portfolio needs two cabinet ministers. Its nearly half the provincial budget and is too big for any one minister to handle. The NDP Government has made another bad decision by eliminating the position of Associate Health Minister. It sends the wrong message to Albertans.

“We’re facing major issues in health care like EMS Red Alerts, the Opioid Crisis, a bloated AHS bureaucracy, and chronic underfunding for mental health and preventative health. The NDP have failed to adequately address these issues.

“The NDP talk about UCP cuts to health care. But this Government has done little to improve health care for Albertans. Now, they are cutting a key health care voice from Cabinet.”

Dr. Swann stated, “I had a good working relationship with the former Associate Health Minister. I’m very disappointed to see the NDP suddenly eliminate this key position. I will continue to hold the NDP Government to account on the health care file.

“Health care issues are numerous and complex. Clearly this NDP Government is not serious about fixing these issues when it eliminates a frontline health care cabinet minister.”


Alberta Liberal Leader David Khan and MLA David Swann release statement on Eid al-Fitr

Alberta Liberal Leader David Khan and MLA David Swann have released the following statement on Eid al-Fitr:

“Today is Eid al-Fitr, a day that marks the end of Ramadan, the holy month of fasting, reflection and community service for Muslims.

“Across Alberta Muslims will be gathering in Mosques, parks and public spaces to celebrate the end of their month of fasting, spirituality and service to those less fortunate.

“We would like to wish Eid Mubarak to all Muslims today. After a month of fasting and spiritual reflection and replenishment we hope you enjoy your much-deserved celebration.

“The Alberta Liberals proudly count diversity, inclusion and multiculturalism among our core values. We are proud to have Muslims add their cultural diversity to our great province.

“May this Eid al-Fitr by a joyous one for Muslims across the province.”


Alberta Liberals are Cautiously Optimistic about Trans Mountain Deal

Alberta Liberal Leader David Khan and Liberal MLA Dr. David Swann issue release on Federal Liberal Government announcement to buy Trans Mountain Pipeline:

Khan stated, “I’m cautiously optimistic construction will proceed on the Trans Mountain Pipeline project. This represents a significant economic opportunity for Alberta and Canada. A completed expanded pipeline will allow Alberta to safely ship its energy products to new markets and earn a better price. However, there are still many unanswered questions.

“We need more details about how Alberta taxpayers are exposed to possible cost overruns. We also believe the Heritage Savings Trust Fund should not be tapped to pay for this project until there are final numbers and assurances this will not be a blank cheque. We welcome the creation of project jobs and increased provincial revenue. This cannot come at any price.

“We urge Alberta’s NDP Government to withdraw Bill 12. That legislation was an extreme and desperate measure and had the potential for a severe backlash against Albertans.

“Ultimately, it was negotiations by the Federal Liberals not threats by the Provincial NDP that resulted in this deal.

Alberta Liberal MLA David Swann added, “This is a hopeful announcement but there are still concerns about environmental accountability.

“We need annual full cost accounting on the tripling of greenhouse gas emissions in relation to this pipeline and public liabilities for tailing ponds cleanup. We also need to know what the returns will be on any taxpayer equity investment.

“We must be willing to be accountable to Albertans about all environmental and reclamation costs as well as the benefits associated with our oil sands for the good of the people of Alberta and our environment.”


Alberta Liberals were right to vote against Bill 12

The Alberta Liberal Caucus and the Alberta Liberal Party has issued the following release in response to B.C. court action on Trans Mountain Pipeline developments:

Alberta Liberal Leader David Khan stated, “The Alberta Liberals were right to vote against Bill 12 despite our support for the pipeline. All the bill did was provoke B.C. into filing this court action today. The NDP Government has only made this sensitive political situation even worse and Alberta is no closer to getting the Trans Mountain Expansion Pipeline built.

Khan added, “ The B.C. Government is giving the Premier a hard lesson on how to play pipeline politics. The Legislation has not been proclaimed, the regulations are not in place and Premier Notley won’t give a straight answer on when, or under what conditions she will use this Legislation..

Liberal MLA Dr David Swann stated, “I stood alone as the only MLA to vote against Bill 12 , the Preserving Canada’s Economic Prosperity Act in the Alberta Legislature. Clearly it was the right decision. This Legislation may push gasoline prices to $2 a litre in B.C.but it will come at a painful price to this province. Bill 12 will cost Albertans jobs, reduce revenue and further damage our economy.”

“Instead of skipping out on the Premier’s conference in Yellowknife, the Premier should have attended and worked with BC Premier Horgan and other Premiers to resolve the problems holding back construction of the Trans Mountain Pipeline.”

Khan stated, “Alberta’s political brinkmanship may look tough but it will not get the Trans Mountain Expansion project built.”’

‘It’s time Premier Notley stopped threatening B.C. That strategy is not working.”

David Khan and David Swann are available for interviews.


Alberta Liberal MLA David Swann and Alberta Liberal Leader David Khan oppose Bill 12 calling it a bad strategy that will hurt Albertans and not move forward the Trans Mountain Pipeline

Edmonton, AB – May 16, 2018Alberta Liberal MLA David Swann will vote against Bill 12 Preserving Canada’s Economic Prosperity Act. 

Both MLA Swann and Alberta Liberal Leader David Khan have voiced criticism of Bill 12 previously calling it a plan that will hurt Albertans and not move the Trans Mountain Pipeline project forward.

Swann stated, “Restricting our exports is simply a bad strategy. It will cost Albertan’s jobs. It will reduce Alberta revenue. It will hurt Alberta’s Oil Patch. It will damage Alberta’s credibility. It will strain Alberta’s relations with the rest of Canada.

“This will do nothing to get the Trans Mountain Pipeline built.

“Bill 12 grants the NDP Government far too much power. Alberta’s Energy Minister will have unrestrained authority and there is no proper appeal process to challenge her decisions. This is not democratic.”

Khan stated, “Turning off the energy taps will not turn on approval for the Trans Mountain Pipeline.”

“Pushing gas prices up to $2 liter in B.C. will not get a shovel in the ground for the Trans Mountain Pipeline. Punishing British Columbians risks a backlash against Albertans.

“The NDP can’t build up the case for this project by tearing down the rest of Canada.”

Khan stated, “I stood against this strategy in March and I stand against it now. Albertans need more from their Premier than a desperate strategy that cuts off our nose to spite our face.”

Liberal MLA David Swann will vote against Bill 12 in the Alberta Legislature


Alberta Liberal Leader David Khan and MLA David Swann call UCP Convention step backward for Albertans

Alberta Liberal Leader David Khan and MLA David Swann are calling the UCP’s founding convention and policies a step backward for Albertans:

Khan stated, “I am disturbed by the policies passed threatening GSAs and the ability for youth to get access to important medical procedures coming out of the UCP convention this weekend.

“Alberta Liberals fought hard for the implementation of GSAs in the Fall of 2014 with MLA Laurie Blakeman pushing Bill 10.”

MLA David Swann added, “We were the first party to introduce to create and protect GSAs and we’ll keep fighting to protect a student’s right to access them.

Khan and Swann say “We find the policy supporting a requirement for parental consent for medical procedures offensive.

“A minor should not be denied access because of their parent’s beliefs.

“It should be the child’s decision to make.”

Khan concluded, “I fought against Jason Kenney in the Calgary-Lougheed by-election despite the odds because this is 2018 and his agenda takes us back to 1978.

“Alberta Liberals have the bold forward-thinking policies to give Albertans a better tomorrow.”

Khan and Swann are available for interview by phone or Skype. Dr. Swann is also available for interview at the “INS” in the Legislature at 1:15 pm.


Liberal MLA David Swann and Liberal Leader David Khan release statement on Mental Health Week

Alberta Liberal MLA David Swann and Alberta Liberal Leader David Khan have released the following joint statement on Mental Health week:

“We are lending our voices to Mental Health Awareness Week with thousands of Albertans in the “Get Loud” campaign. “Getting Loud” means normalizing Mental Health and addiction issues. We should deal with these issues as we would any other medical condition. Stigma around Mental Health impairs people’s ability to openly and honestly talk about these issues. It also hampers them seeking needed treatment and solutions.

Albertans around the province are working to end stigma. We are fighting for better Mental Health policies. That includes new emphasis on peer support and counseling for mental distress and addictions.

The NDP Government spends less than 5% of Alberta’s Health budget on Mental Health. Alberta Liberals believe more should be done. We believe addressing long waitlists for children and youth is a priority.

Investing in preventative medicine like mental health will not only help Albertans but save our health care system and society money in the long run as well.

“Get Loud” for ourselves, our families, and our friends.


Alberta Liberal Leader David Khan and MLA David Swann demand more action on Legal Aid, court wait times

Alberta Liberals David Khan and David Swann have released the following statement in response to today’s announcement from Alberta Justice:

Alberta’s Justice Minister announced the government is introducing more duty counsel services at first appearance bail hearings to reduce court backlogs.

Both Khan and Swann say this will help as a limited step forward – but ultimately this is a grossly inadequate solution.

“We are supportive of the move but it does not address the real issues. The NDP Government lacks a comprehensive strategy to address systemic problems with court wait times.”

Khan stated, “This only addresses first appearances. There is too much self-representation in the courts which slows down trials, clogs up the system and denies disadvantaged Albertans a fair and equitable hearing.

“The Government should be heeding the advice of Criminal Defence Lawyer Association (CDLA) and providing an immediate 40% funding increase for Legal Aid as part of a 65% increase over the next four years. We also need to see income thresholds for support raised. Too many Albertans who need this service aren’t even eligible to receive it.

“The Government also needs to be implementing other strategies for reducing court wait times, such as reviewing the efficiency of the “file ownership” system for Crown Prosecutors, implementing a universal province-wide trial scheduling system, enforcing timely release of disclosure, appointing and funding more provincial court justices, and pressuring the federal Government to fill Superior Court Judge vacancies.”

Swann added to Khan’s remarks “This Minister is not listening to all sides on this issue. I am hearing from defence lawyers in Alberta that they are not being properly consulted. Justice is about balance and that means bringing all stakeholders to the table to find solutions to these problems.

“The Minister also needs to get serious about addressing the backlogs and systemic issues at the Calgary Medical Examiner office which have led to lengthy turnaround times for death investigations.”


Alberta Liberal MLA David Swann and Alberta Liberal Leader David Khan are calling for support to the Siksika Nation as they face state of emergency with flooding crisis

Alberta Liberal MLA David Swann and Liberal Leader David Khan are calling for action from the NDP Government on the Siksika Nation state of emergency flooding crisis:

Alberta Liberal MLA David Swann says the NDP Government should immediately reach out to support the Siksika Nation as it is facing a crisis today and not wait for proposed changes to the Emergency Management Act in the fall.

The Siksika Nation has declared a 7-day local state of emergency as it struggles with massive overland flooding and limited resources to deal with the crisis.

Siksika Nation chief and council says there is a risk to people, property and infrastructure.

At an emergency meeting Tuesday, Chief Joseph Weasel Child said 30 homes are affected by flooding and up to 300 kilometers of the 500 kilometers of road on Siksika land are under water.

Weasel Child added “the crisis is now” and is concerned about river flooding once the snowpack melts.

“This is the worst I have seen in my life on the nation,” he said.

Alberta Liberal Leader David Khan says “Siksika Nation needs help now – not later this year.”

“Waiting for the report will be too late to assist the Siksika Nation which has suffered a series of disasters including the flooding this week, wildfires in October and the massive Southern Alberta Flood in 2013.”


Alberta Liberal Leader David Khan and MLA David Swann react to Bill 12

Alberta Liberals David Khan and David Swann have issued the following release on the NDP Government’s proposed legislation to reduce natural gas, crude oil and refined bitumen exports to B.C. through licensing:

Khan and Swann spoke on Bill 12 saying, “Pushing the price of gasoline to $2 a litre in BC won’t build the Trans Mountain Pipeline. It will build a backlash against Albertans.”

David Khan stated, “This is divisive strategy that will harm Alberta with job losses, reduce provincial revenue and will not get this pipeline built.

“Bill 12 grants extreme new powers to the NDP Government that will them to unilaterally force industry to reduce exports without any accountability. That is undemocratic.”

Dr. Swann criticized Bill 12 saying, “The lack of details in this legislation is disturbing. The NDP Government wants extraordinary powers to interfere with the oil and gas industry but won’t provide specifics or limitations on those new powers.

“There is no proper arm’s length appeal process. The NDP Energy Minister will act to both cut export licenses and renew export licenses. The NDP Government drafted this legislation for its political convenience – not for the good of Albertans.”