September 22, 2017 3:39 pm
Updated: September 26, 2017 3:29 pm

Saskatoon MLA Ryan Meili announces platform for Sask. NDP leadership

The Saskatchewan NDP has lacked a permanent leader for a year and a half, but its fortune is about to change. The race to select a new leader has officially begun. First time MLA and previous leadership contender, Ryan Meili, is off and running. David Baxter reports.

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Ryan Meili, Saskatoon MLA for Meewasin, announced his NDP platform in Moose Jaw Friday.

“I’m running for leader of the Saskatchewan NDP for the same reason I went into medicine: I want everyone to have the opportunity to enjoy the best health they can,” Meili said in a release.

In his campaign platform, Meili outlines several focus points:

  • A healthy economy – Decrease poverty by 50 per cent, support growing Saskatchewan tech industry, enact pay equity legislation, increase minimum wage to $15 an hour
  • Investing upstream – Establish a Ministry of Children to improve early education, implement a nutritious lunch program, restore funding in education and expand on community school model
  • Real reconciliation – Culturally appropriate education and employment training, commit Premier to annual “Closing the Gap” address, re-establish Ministry of First Nations and Metis Relations which would be charged with implementing the calls to action from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission
  • Complete care – Introduce Pharmacare which would provide universal coverage for essential medications, expand access to counselling services and emergency mental health care
  • Rural reconnection – Repeal Bill 63 to give rural school boards autonomy, create a provincial transportation system, improve high-speed internet and cellular service across the province
  • Energy leadership – Create local, renewable power generation for small towns and reserves, establish a separate body from SaskPower that would be charged with energy efficiency, craft incentives for reducing carbon emissions
  • Deeper democracy – End corporate and union donations to political parties, implement candidate rules that encourage diverse representation

On hand for the announcement today were MLA Cathy Sproule and Moose Jaw city councillor Don Mitchell.

This will be Meili’s third leadership bid.

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