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‘Fair Deal Panel’ town hall scheduled for Airdrie cancelled due to panellist’s death

The "Fair Deal Panel" hears from an Albertan at a town hall session. Global News

The Alberta government’s “Fair Deal Panel” has had to cancel one of its stops on the provincial tour after one of its panellists died.

In an emailed statement, the government said the town hall scheduled for Thursday, Jan. 16 in Airdrie was postponed after panel member Jason Goodstriker died.

READ MORE: Cost of a fair deal: experts break down Alberta government panel’s mandate

“We have lost an extraordinary person in Jason Goodstriker,” Indigenous Relations Minister Rick Wilson said in an emailed statement on Thursday afternoon.

“He was the sort of person who left a strong impression on me and others around him with his generosity, sharp mind and easy laugh.”

Goodstriker, who leaves behind a wife, children and many loved ones, is being remembered as “the voice of Indigenous gatherings, powwows and celebrations” in both Canada and the U.S., who brought communities together.

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The government said the town hall set for Medicine Hat on Friday, Jan. 17 will still go ahead at the Medicine Hat Exhibition and Stampede Auditorium from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Those who are interested in going are encouraged to register online, as space is limited.

The Airdrie session will be rescheduled for a later date, the government said, but did not give a date or time on Thursday.

The panel is travelling across the province, hosting a series of town halls to hear from Albertans on ways they think the province could have more independence and autonomy within Canada, as well as ways to further provincial economic interests.

READ MORE: Premier Jason Kenney announces ‘Fair Deal Panel’ to advance Alberta’s interests, like pipelines

The panel will be doing consultations and accepting online feedback until Jan. 30. The panel has to give a full report on its findings to the government by March 31.

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