Farm safety bill spurs death threats against Alberta premier
EDMONTON — Alberta’s premier and some NDP MLAs have been targeted with violent threats over their controversial new farm safety legislation.
Rachel Notley’s government saw Bill 6 pass in the legislature on Thursday; it will become law on Jan. 1, 2016.
Michael, who uses the Twitter handle @fight_punk, posted a screen grab of some blunt threats against Notley and tweeted it at the RCMP. He told Global News the comments originally appeared on the CTV Lethbridge Facebook page but were later deleted.
Global News is not revealing his identity out of concern of possible reprisals.
Alberta RCMP said they are aware of the comments but are not investigating.
Alberta sheriffs are responsible for the premier’s protection and it’s up to them to contact police to request an investigation, the RCMP said.
“It’s like anyone else: if you were receiving nasty tweets, it’s not until you decided to take action and contact police that we would step in,” said Cpl. Hal Turnbull with RCMP strategic communications. “So, it’s not just a question of the RCMP standing up and saying, ‘We think there’s a risk.’ ”
Notley spoke about the threats Thursday as she addressed the media after one of the most fiery legislative sittings in Alberta’s recent history.
“There’s no question there were a very small group of people opposed to Bill 6 who took their opposition too far,” said Notley. “But at the end of the day, I feel very proud about the record our government demonstrated this fall in the session.”
In October, Notley said she was aware of ongoing death threats being made against her.
Wildrose leader Brian Jean, who has been a vocal opponent of Bill 6, condemned violent social media comments in a Facebook post on Friday.
“These kinds of comments cross all bounds of respect and decency and have absolutely no place in our political discourse,” Jean said.
On Thursday, Energy Minister Margaret McCuaig-Boyd, who comes from a farming family, broke down in tears during the final Bill 6 debate in the legislature. She said the violent discourse brought about by the debate had created a climate of fear.
“I myself was somewhat concerned to go home last week. I do know now what it’s like to be cyberbullied, I do know what it’s like to have threats.”
– With files from Erika Tucker
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