The Saskatchewan Green Party’s leader wants to be the next premier and thinks all parties should get a seat at the table.
With all seats going to either the Saskatchewan Party or the Saskatchewan New Democratic Party (NDP) in the last four general elections, Naomi Hunter wants to bring in proportional representation at the legislature through electoral reform.
FULL COVERAGE: 2020 Saskatchewan Election
“I actually want to see a government where all the parties are in there and working together,” she said.
“I would be that kind of a premier. I want to work across party lines in order to create the best possible society that we can have and a caring and loving government … Saskatchewan people are ready for change. Saskatchewan people are ready for fairness.”
In her first campaign as the Green Party leader, Hunter described their top priority as combating climate change.
“Of course, my biggest concern leading into this election is the fact that we’re in a state of climate emergency here on the entire planet,” she said.
“I want to see Canada and Saskatchewan stop importing oil from overseas. We should, instead, be switching over to clean energy: solar, wind and geothermal … I want to see us moving to 100 per cent renewable energy within a decade.”
“When you go to look after the climate, the Green Party believes in a very holistic approach and we need to look after people while looking after the environment.”
If successful this election, Hunter is also proposing a guaranteed livable income to all who need it in the province, regardless of what the federal government is offering, as one of the party’s top platform points.
“We need a guaranteed livable income in Saskatchewan with COVID-19 having a second wave about to hit. This is something that would make sure that all people were looked after and it would be a safety net that would take care of everyone,” Hunter said.
“And not create a system where there are loopholes where, I mean, we saw it in the federal situation where (Prime Minister) Justin Trudeau had to stand up every day and try to fill in all the gaps of how the (Canada Emergency Response Benefit) wasn’t quite reaching everyone. A guaranteed livable income would make sure to look after everybody.”
To cover the costs of implementing these, the Green Party leader is proposing a higher corporate tax.
“Here in Saskatchewan, the industries that currently could be paying for all of that are getting away almost scot-free. Some of our biggest industries in this province … aren’t paying their fair share of taxes,” Hunter said.
“They’re owned by people outside of this province and I would like to see a wealth tax. I want to make sure that those at the top are paying their fair share and just a one per cent tax on the wealthiest would actually pay for all the social programming and the climate change positions that I want to see happen in this province.”
The Saskatchewan Green Party hasn’t had an elected MLA since its inception in 1998.
Besides the Green Party, NDP and Saskatchewan Party, the three other parties running in the election are the Buffalo Party of Saskatchewan, the Progressive Conservative Party of Saskatchewan, and the Saskatchewan Liberal Party.
Saskatchewan Party Leader Scott Moe and Saskatchewan NDP Leader Ryan Meili will square off on Oct. 14 at 6:05 p.m. in a debate that will be broadcast live on Global Regina and Saskatoon and on globalnews.ca.
The province’s 29th general election is scheduled to take place on Oct. 26.
–With files from Anna McMillan