Federal NDP leader Jagmeet Singh makes campaign-style stop in Edmonton

Jagmeet Singh in downtown Edmonton on July 18, 2021. Julien Fournier/Global News

Jagmeet Singh made an appearance at the Edmonton Downtown Farmers Market Sunday afternoon as part of the federal NDP leader’s Alberta tour.

It’s part of a three-day road trip across the province that began with a visit to Calgary on Saturday.

After his stop in Edmonton, he will meet with Confederacy of Treaty 6 First Nations Grand Chief Vernon Watchmaker and the Metis Settlements Treaty Council.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Conservative leader Erin O’Toole have both visited Alberta in July.

On Sunday, Singh was asked if his campaign-style visit also signaled an upcoming federal election.

“I don’t think we should be going to an election, we should be getting people the help they need,” Singh said. “I want to get back to work. Let’s go back to Ottawa in September and continue to help people out. If [Justin Trudeau] calls one, we will be ready to go.”
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Singh told reporters that his party’s jobs plan would invest in a diversified economy in Alberta, infrastructure and support for energy-sector workers.

“In Alberta, things were bad before the pandemic for energy and resource-sector workers,” Singh said. “We’ve seen there are ways to retrofit industrial and commercial buildings, which would put those workers to work. We know remediating oil wells also creates job opportunities.”

If elected, Singh said investing in childcare would be a priority for the federal NDP to help women impacted by the pandemic get back to work.

As well, Singh noted local calls for health care support — promising if elected his party would increase federal health transfers to provinces.

Singh also discussed Alberta’s referendum on equalization. He said he would be open to ensuring Alberta gets a “fair transfer.”

Singh was joined by Edmonton Strathcona MP Heather McPherson, the party’s lone MP in Alberta.

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