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Frustrations, fumbles and dropped balls

How to juggle life in 2021

TOMORROW! 
We've all done it. Walked to the storefront and realized we forgot our mask - and then comes the sense of frustration, when it feels like the sky is crashing down on us. Everything feels new and none of it is comfortable. It feels like we’re dropping all of our balls.

It's not just you, it's all of us.

Grab your beverage of choice, and join us virtually on April 7th with Dr. Jody Carrington for an evening focused on how to juggle.. metaphorically... all of the demands on us in 2021.

April 2021
7
Register today for this very special event!
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Dr. Jody Carrington is a renowned psychologist, sought after for her expertise, energy and approach to helping individuals, teams and organizations solve their most complex human-centred challenges. A bestselling author and revered speaker, Jody focuses much of her work around reconnection - the key to healthy relationships and productive teams.

Her approach is authentic, real and often hilarious. She speaks passionately about resilience, mental health, leadership, burnout, grief and trauma - and how reconnection is the answer to so many of the root problems we face.

We hope you can join us for a light-hearted chat, filled with some laughs and hopefully a refreshing new perspective on managing stress and dropped balls one year in to the pandemic.

Disclaimer: Dr. Jody sometimes uses colourful language which may not be suitable for all audiences

Being HeadStrong Webinar 

With MP John Barlow

HeadStrong is a collaborative effort focused on supporting people and businesses through the escalated stress and anxiety of the COVID-19 pandemic.

About this Event:
Let's be HEADSTRONG TOGETHER!

Please join us for this Free Webinar where Member of Parliament John Barlow will be interviewed.

To learn more about our support program, please click:
https://www.headstrongprogram.com/

 

April 9th, 2021
12:00pm MT 
REGISTER
Our community was impacted by grass fires this past week in the district of Willow Creek just east of Highway 2.

Over 5,000 hectares were damaged by the blaze, but thanks to the quick action of our community members and volunteers not a life was lost.

Thank you to all of the volunteers and firefighters, the farmers who jumped in to provide equipment to form a fire break, neighbours who provided helping hands and business owners who provided food, drinks and gear.

Our thoughts go out to those who lost their homes and whose land was impacted.

It was a dry winter and so far a dry spring leading to risky conditions for grass fires. Alberta has already issued a number of areas with fire bans (see here: https://www.albertafirebans.ca).

Please exercise extra caution this time of year and if you are unsure of your regulations, please reach out to your local fire department.
No family should ever feel unsafe
MP John Barlow
No family should ever feel unsafe in their home, but rural crime remains a critical issue across Alberta and certainly in Foothills.
 
My Conservative colleagues and I have brought forward several initiatives on rural crime including a study at the Public Safety Committee, established a Rural Crime Task Force and locally I partnered with MLAs, municipal councils, First Nation communities, RCMP and rural crime watch groups to share ideas.
 
However, our efforts are being stymied by nonsensical legislative changes by the Liberal government.
 
This has never been more evident than with the recent tabling of Bills C-21 and C-22. The first bill is an infringement on the rights of law-abiding firearms owners, while C-22 actually reduces sentencing on violent gun crime.
 
In contrast, Conservatives tabled alternative legislation (C-238) to target actual gun crime and smuggling to strengthen the criminal code. Liberals voted against that bill, showing they are not serious about stopping dangerous criminals from accessing illegal firearms.
 
How does this make any sense? Why are the Liberals ignoring the data and experts when it comes to addressing rural crime, gangs and gun crime?
 
The Liberals are misleading Canadians when they claim Bill C-21 will curb gun crime because we know that is simply not true. This will not keep firearms out of the hands of criminals and gangs. The fact is most firearms used in criminal activities are illegal firearms smuggled into Canada from the United States.
 
In fact, C-21 also bans Airsoft guns which will be devastating to this industry including Foothills paintball parks like Millarville and Bragg Creek.
 
No matter how draconian the Liberal government gets with domestic firearms regulations, no matter how much they trample on the freedoms of law-abiding Canadians, the reality is criminals do not obtain their firearms legally, and they will never follow firearms laws. 
 
Instead of targeting law-abiding Canadians and firearms retailers, the government should be investing in  anti-gang and gun units and the CBSA to provide law enforcement with the resources they need to stop illegal smuggling operations and get dangerous criminals and gangs off our streets.
 
However, the Liberals have gone backwards by introducing Bill C-22.
 
C-22 eliminates a number of mandatory minimums relating to gun crimes including: robbery with a firearm; weapons trafficking; unauthorized importing or exporting; discharging a firearm with intent; using a firearm in commission of offences; and possession of weapon obtained by commission of offence.
 
A majority of the above mandatory minimums were introduced under previous Liberal governments, contrary to the narrative from the Liberals they are undoing Conservative legislation.
 
To be clear, the Liberals are eliminating mandatory prison time for criminals who commit robbery with a firearm, weapons trafficking, and drive-by shootings. They’re doing this because they feel these laws are unfair. They are standing up for criminals instead of defending our rural communities and victims of crime.
 
Please know, we are doing everything we can to oppose both Bills including organizing petitions to ensure the Liberals understand the issue. The first petition, led by Conservative MP Glen Motz from Medicine Hat, was tabled with 175,000 signatures and Calgary MP Michelle Rempel-Garner sponsored another petition which garnered more than 230,000 signatures – a record number of petition signatures for the House. 
 
You can also express your opposition by writing directly to the Minister of Public Safety and Prime Minister at pm@pm.gc.ca 
and ps.ministerofpublicsafety-ministredelasecuritepublique.sp@canada.ca
 
Also, speak with friends and family who do not own firearms to help them understand your concerns. We need to show Canadians we already have strict gun control measures in this country, this legislation will not address gun crime and you can help be a part of that movement.
 
Universal Broadband Fund investing in Foothills Communities
Now, more than ever, rural Canadians count on access to reliable high-speed Internet. The strain of the pandemic has forced many people to work from home and students to learn virtually.
 
Small business owners need to connect to the virtual marketplace, farmers who are on the cutting edge of technology need to be able to connect for crop, herd and soil management and seniors must be able to access their health care services.
 
The Government of Canada’s Universal Broadband Fund, with the partnership of Telus announced the approval of rural connectivity projects in Blackie, Bragg Creek and Stavely, improving broadband access for our communities.
 
This means, nearly 600 rural households and businesses in these communities will be connected to high speed internet by November 15, 2021.
 
 
Quotes:
 
I strongly believe access to high speed internet is essential and should be treated as such. It was a top priority in my riding before COVID, but the pandemic has exacerbated the need for high speed internet service and to address gapping holes within the system, especially in rural communities. This investment is a necessity for these communities, and will help ensure our rural communities remain strong and resilient during these difficult times. It will also provide the opportunity for these communities to attract new businesses, which is critical to grow our rural economy."
  • John Barlow, Member of Parliament for Foothills
 
TELUS is committed to ensuring that all Albertans can stay connected to the people and information that matter the most, regardless of where they choose to live. Bridging digital divides is central to everything we do, so we are proud to be connecting 47 more rural communities, including Blackie, Bragg Creek and Stavely, in partnership with the Universal Broadband Fund (UBF). Last year, TELUS expedited capital investments from our previously announced $16 billion investment in Alberta to support the province throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, including a specific focus on connecting rural and remote communities that require access to reliable, world-class networks. These investments, including those announced today, will ensure that Albertans in more remote parts of our province have equal access to the educational, health, and economic opportunities that High Speed Broadband provides.”
  • Shazia Zeb Sobani, TELUS Vice-President of Customer Network Implementation
 
 
Quick facts
 
  • Canada's Connectivity Strategy aims to provide all Canadians with access to Internet speeds of at least 50 megabits per second (Mbps) download / 10 Mbps upload.
  • Applications to the Universal Broadband Fund closed on March 15, 2021.
  • The UBF was first announced in Budget 2019, but was not launched until November 9, 2020
 
April 1st - Trudeau keeps raising your taxes
My position has never wavered – I will oppose a carbon tax of any kind and it must be repealed.

It does not reduce emissions and is disproportionately more expensive for rural Canadians who cannot access public transit, ride their bikes to work or turn the heat off on their barns.

Conservatives put forward a motion to stop the Liberals from raising taxes during the pandemic. Not only did the Liberals vote against our motion, but they chose to raise the Carbon Tax even higher. Starting on April 1st 2021 the carbon tax increases $40 a tonne. This increase will mean Canadians will pay more for groceries, home heating and add up to 37.57 cents per litre to the cost of gas.


 Read more here 


On April 1st, the Liberal's escalator tax on beer, wine and spirits has increased for the fifth time in four years, and the second time during the pandemic. This increase will place additional stress on struggling bars and restaurants, as well as the 200,000 Canadians whose jobs are supported by the production and sale of beer, wine and spirits.

Amid the pandemic with restaurant and bar sales cratering, the April 1 increase on alcohol amounts to another $20 million in taxes that Canadians and our already struggling hospitality sector will ultimately pay.

Our domestic producers are an integral part of our economy.  With the effects of COVID-19 on its own having a drastic enough impact on their bottom line, now is not the time to take more of their hard-earned money.

This is not right. 

 
Trudeau’s WE Scandal and the Cover-up of Sexual Misconduct in the CAF Continues

Last sitting week, Canada’s Conservatives passed an Opposition Day motion to have key players – or Justin Trudeau – testify at committees on the Liberal government’s WE scandal and the cover-up of sexual misconduct in the Canadian Armed Forces.

The Liberals have decided to ignore this motion, and have the government House Leader, Pablo Rodriguez, testify at Ethics Committee instead.

The motion, passed by a majority of Parliamentarians, clearly calls for the key players or Trudeau to testify on the Liberal’s WE scandal and the cover-up of sexual misconduct in the Canadian Armed Forces.

By blocking witnesses, and ordering Liberal advisors to defy Parliament, the Trudeau government is devaluing and disrespecting our democracy.

Further, Trudeau stated that he was not aware of concerns of any kind regarding allegations of sexual misconduct against General Vance.

Yet, at the Defence Committee on March 12, Minister Sajjan confirmed, “[the Prime Minister] was informed that I had raised those concerns with the Privy Council Office.

It is impossible for both statements to be true. Either Minister Sajjan or Prime Minister Trudeau are misleading Canadians about the CAF sexual misconduct cover-up.

The Liberals must come clean on sexual misconduct and corruption, but they don't want the truth to get out.

Canadians want accountability on the government’s scandals, and Conservatives will continue to demand for answers.

Conservative's Recovery Plan for Canada

Canadians need hope. Hope that life will return to normal. Hope that businesses can function at full capacity. Hope that borders will reopen so that families can reunite, and our tourism sector can flourish.

While other countries, like the United Kingdom and the United States, have developed data-driven post COVID-19 plans, Canadians are left without a plan for the future.

Last month, Erin O’Toole laid out the path to a stronger Canada through a complete pandemic recovery. First and foremost, it is a return to good government and common sense:

Secure the 1 million lost jobs since COVID started: These jobs are critical for restoring our local economy, supporting small business and helping families get back on their feet. When families and companies are secure, the government can follow.

Improve Accountability: The Liberals have repeatedly undermined our ethical laws by ignoring direction from Parliament, withholding information, blocking debate and using taxpayer money to help their friends. It is clear that Canada needs to toughen consequences for unethical politicians.

Address Mental Health: While the pandemic highlighted our lack of mental health support, this has been a growing problem that has been pushed aside for too long. Whether it is addiction, suicide, public safety, support for those with serious mental illness or helping those who are in crisis, we need to do better. We can do this by improving access to emergency help, supporting those in crisis instead of leaving it to police to respond, and addressing Canada’s other major crisis – the major opioid crisis that has taken more lives than COVID.

Emergency Readiness: Canada was worse off because of the cuts by the Liberals and by their lack of action when the pandemic started. Conservatives would restore pandemic stockpiles, ensure domestic capacity for emergencies in the future, and make sure we can make vaccines here in Canada.

Restore Canada’s Fiscal Management: Under the Liberals, Canada’s runaway spending has put a massive debt and burden on our children, our grandchildren and our great grandchildren. Conservatives will balance the budget – which could take as long as ten years – through a combination of spending reviews, economic growth, and smart and honest governance. We would kill the Liberal’s carbon tax that has not reduced emissions and create a responsible plan to cut emissions.
 

WHERE IS THE LIBERAL PLAN? 

Conservatives have called for the Liberals to provide a plan to all Canadians on re-opening the economy and getting Canada back on track. Specifically, when Canadians can expect to be able to resume social life and regular economic activities.  The Liberals – joined by the NDP and the Bloc – voted against providing a plan to Canadians. The only condition was to have the Liberals provide that plan to Canadians before the Budget. If the government cannot even provide a clear idea of when Canadians can expect life to return to normal and what needs to happen, they cannot claim to have a plan or even to be transparent.

After more than a year, despite our access to public health tools such as rapid tests, shared data on how COVID-19 spreads, and vaccines, we are still waiting for information on what metrics will be used to determine a plan for reopening. It is unacceptable to continue to ask Canadians to sacrifice more without providing clarity on how and when we can expect to see restrictions to be safely eased.

As Canadians slowly get vaccinated, we need a plan to end lockdowns and reopen our borders. This is not a call for a reckless and sudden reopening, and we are not calling for unrealistic predictions.

Small business owners, separated families, and those dealing with mental health challenges cannot and should not continue to be left in the dark about what criteria needs to be met in order for lockdowns to end. Canadians have respected health guidelines, and its time for the government to show them that same respect with a plan to get life back to normal.

Canada’s Conservatives will continue to fight for the hope and clarity that so many families and businesses need.

Watch me on CTV pressing for a Federal plan to open our economy and our country: 
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