Issues Worth Fighting For with the
Green Party of Saskatchewan -Originally
prepared as a presentation to the Porcupine Plain High School
- October 31, 2007 by Elaine Hughes, Candidate for Kelvington
- Wadena. While Elaine Hughes changed what she actually presented,
the webmaster asked to be able to post what had been her initial draft.
Thank you for the opportunity to speak with you today and to perhaps
introduce you to the Green Party of Saskatchewan. The Green Party
is not so much about winning seats as it is about giving people
an alternative to the mainstream parties. It offers people the
if they want to engage and become involved - it offers them
the opportunity to exercise their power and take back democracy.
Central to everything the Green Party of Saskatchewan stands for
is one of its founding Principles which states: “Human societies
must operate with the understanding that we are part of nature, not
separate from nature. We must maintain an ecological balance and live
within the ecological and resource limits of our communities and our
planet. We support a sustainable society that utilizes resources in
such a way that future generations will benefit and not suffer from
the practices of our generation. To this end we must practice agriculture
which replenishes the soil, move to an energy efficient economy and
live in ways that respect the integrity of natural systems.”
Looking through this lens, I will address only three of our concerns
1) Loss of rural communities, rural schools, small family farms and
According to the May 2006 Census of Agriculture, we now have 44,329
farms in the province, a 12.4% decrease in the last 5 years. And, we
now have 59,185 farm operators, which is a 10.7% decline in the same
5 years. To think that Saskatchewan once fed much of the world. We
must stop this runaway train!
As a result of these statistics, one of the major issues currently
facing rural Saskatchewan is the loss of our small communities, our
small family farms, our rural schools and our rural lifestyle caused,
for the most part, by the spread of large agribusiness which degrades
the quality of our environment, the quality of our food products, and
the health of local economies. A Green Party of Saskatchewan Government
will support the family farm system of production and will encourage
the Federal Government to also finance the transition to ecologically
sound, sustainable and organic agriculture that supports independent
farms and farm co-operatives rather than large agribusiness ventures.
We need a “Green” vision and leadership to bring our rural
and urban society together to create community-based, sustainable standards
and practices that value the health of our food, land, water and air,
focussed on producing top quality, world class products by methods
that earn recognition from environmentally conscious people around
the world. A Green Party of Saskatchewan Government will promote Saskatchewan
agriculture, industry, products, institutions and communities nationally
and internationally as being certified high quality, environmentally
responsible and economically sustainable. This heritage can produce
that "Quality Saskatchewan" experience over the long term
that will not only entice young people to remain and be part of this
land into the future, but will also attract many others who want to
share in a healthy economy based on a healthy environment that seeks
to support a just and caring society for all of our citizens.
resources belong to Saskatchewan people of today and to all future
but we are losing revenue by giving them
away to large foreign corporations. A Green Party of Saskatchewan would
address this situation through tax reform based on revenue instead
of property, and fair and sustainable royalties levied on our precious
resources, making adequate funds available for maintaining government
programs, including education, health care and roads.
The Green Party of Saskatchewan believes that education is the responsibility
of society as a whole - it is for all members of that society to contribute
to the education of its young people and adults. It also believes that
through the creation of local School Councils, with adequate funding
through tax reform, local decision-making powers, and the participation
of students, teachers and parents, there will be a collaborative effort
to educate our children in vibrant and sustainable communities.
2) Another major issue facing the province at the moment is the threat
to the health of our residents and our environment posed by the expansion
of uranium industry.
As it pushes for increased extraction and export of uranium, for
the construction of a uranium refinery in Saskatchewan, and perhaps
even the creation of the world’s nuclear waste dump in our
back yard, this industry is concerned only about its own bottom line.
And, since Canada is the world’s largest uranium producer,
we are also party to the death and mutilation of millions of innocent
lives wherever the war machine brings its Depleted Uranium bullets.
The Green Party
of Saskatchewan is the only party which opposes the expansion of
the uranium and
nuclear power industry. The future health
and social impacts on industry workers and all people of the world,
as well as the contamination of our environment for hundreds of thousands
of years into the future, far outweigh the short-term, short-sighted
financial gains from this dangerous, highly subsidized industry. The
sure and steady path for us, and for the world, is for simple and clean
technologies such as wind, solar, geothermal energy, along with energy
efficiency and conservation, to run our homes, businesses and computers.
And, for our trains and cars and planes, the cleanest and most plentiful
source today is that of Green Hydrogen - produced using non-fossil
or non-nuclear fuel. All of these technologies will provide plenty
of good decentralized employment worldwide; there is no way that a
complicated and dangerous technology like the nuclear industry can
compete with them.
3) Health care is a priority to everyone.
The Green Party
of Saskatchewan recognizes that an effective health system requires
a healthy environment - clean
air, water and food for all residents. We need to focus our efforts
illness and restoring the voice of local communities in the decision-making
process on matters which affect them directly. A Green Party of Saskatchewan
Government will support preventative health care considering social,
economic and environmental factors. It will also create a democratic
participatory process for an effective community voice in determining
health policy at the local level through boards that are 100% elected;
will support the introduction of more community health centres, pharmacare,
alternative medicine, dental care and home care; will ensure adequate
funding is available to maintain the five principles of Medicare; and
will support the transition to a salaried team of health personnel.
The Green Party of Saskatchewan is opposed to the privatization of
health care services.
We are wrong if
we continue to think that we can ‘manage’ nature:
remove more trees than we plant; drain wetlands or divert rivers to
where we want them; saturate the soil used to grow our food with poisonous
chemicals to kill weeds or pests, and fill our air with pollutants
that cause cancer and other killer diseases.
Without change, the end result of our ‘business as usual’ activities
will be to download the enormous health and financial burden of the
environmental damage onto future generations. Corporations are worried
only about their own bottom line. In order that they continue to
accumulate wealth, they and their political friends want privatization,
deregulation (heard about TILMA?), centralization and continental
integration (heard about the secret plans being made, as we speak,
by the continent’s largest corporations for the North American
You and I have
work to do: help get the message out that the Green Party’s
vision offers a chance for a better Saskatchewan for ourselves, our
We desperately need a real change in government. By electing Green
Party candidates to the Legislature in Regina, we can begin the fight
to take back our democracy and fight for a world which will support
and protect our very lives far into the future.
So far, this is the only planet I know of which supports life.
For the complete Green Party of Saskatchewan Platform 2007, go to:
Green Party of Saskatchewan at: http://www.greenpartysask.ca/
These are the talking
notes Elaine settled on to bring to the presentation:
Issues Worth Fighting For with the Green Party of Saskatchewan - Porcupine
Plain High School - October 31, 2021
Thank you for asking me to speak with you today.
I will tell you briefly what the Green Party of Saskatchewan stands
it's different from the other parties, and how you can get involved
Everything the Green Party of Saskatchewan stands for can be wrapped
one sentence: "Human societies
must operate with the understanding that we
are part of nature, not separate from nature." In everything we
our food, cook our food, drive our cars, operate our computers - we
put nature first. We have to learn to do those things in ways that
protect our water, air and soil, and prevent ourselves from getting
The Green Party will work to save our small family farms, help them
healthy food without using harmful chemicals, and help them raise animals
outside in the fresh air and sunshine where they are meant to be.
The Green Party will work with business people, First Nations, farmers,
teachers, parents, and young people to help build strong communities,
through changes in the tax system, provide funding to maintain roads,
keep your schools open and to provide more health centres close to
The Green Party is the only party which believes that uranium mines
closed. It will continue educating people about how uranium can make
workers, and people who live near the mines, sick, and how it harms
around the world when it is used in wars.
To learn more about the Green Party of Saskatchewan and how you can
involved, please go to: http://www.greenpartysask.ca/