Throughout the spring of 2018 the Green Party of PEI held a series of public engagement forums where Islanders were invited to let us know their priorities and their ideas for creating a better future.
The meetings were held in Alberton, Summerside, Emerald, Charlottetown, Montague and Souris, where hundreds of Islanders attended and helped develop the Green platform.
This is What Islanders Shared
We are concerned that the health and wellness services people need are not currently available to them or won’t be in the future, whether that is access to family physicians, timely emergency services, mental health and addiction services, long term care, or availability of specialists. We are currently struggling within a crisis intervention system that always feels five steps behind the public need. We need to get out of a reactive model and develop a system that is proactive and that promotes wellness, understanding the links between the social and environmental determinants of health.
At the heart of our education system is our children. In no other sector do we have such an occasion to impact the future. Children deserve the best possible space, tools, and experiences to reach their full potential. We must look at each child as a whole and support them on an individual basis, including life skills, social and emotional skills, community engagement, and a culture-enriched curriculum with a strong foundation in mathematics, language arts, and science.
We need to value individuals for who they are rather than solely for the work they do to contribute to the gross domestic product (GDP). Poverty is real on PEI and must be recognized and addressed by government. Individual well-being flows from a number of places, including sufficient funds to live with security and dignity.
The importance of protecting our air, water, and soil cannot be overstated. Prince Edward Island’s economy is based on vibrant agricultural and fishery sectors. The future success of our province relies on clean water to drink, sustainable fisheries, and fertile soil for our crops.
We need to think about the long term operational and maintenance costs for our infrastructure assets - the seniors’ facilities, schools, hospitals, roads, and bridges. We need to separate the bricks and mortar from the programs and services.
Our growing economy is not translating into growing financial stability and well-being for Islanders. People are having trouble making ends meet and there is a disconnect between our lives and the glowing words around PEI’s economic performance; working Islanders are not seeing the ‘Mighty Island’ in their day-to-day lives. Young people from all communities deserve the opportunity to make a future locally.
We face too much risk with our export market focused on the US - we need to balance business and economic activity and diversify our exports to other markets including regional and local. We must build a strong sustainable economy by strengthening and supporting rural and urban communities in developing their own unique opportunities and culture.
We are concerned not just about the number of jobs, but the quality of jobs that are available. We must support small businesses and entrepreneurs and recognize and value the non- profit sector. The current sector-based approach should be assessed to ensure that it is meeting both employment and social needs. Targeted investments should be made be creative and work collaboratively to find the best solutions to the critical issues facing our communities. Islanders also told us that they love this province and believe in the strength in new growth sectors such as clean tech and green energy.
Islanders want government to operate with genuine openness and transparency, putting the expectations of all people ahead of the politicians. The primary role of government is to be creative and work collaboratively to find the best solutions to the critical issues facing our communities. Islanders will have confidence in our government when it is truly accountable and spends responsibly.
Islanders also told us that they love this province and believe in the strength and resiliency of our communities. They believe a better future is possible: that we can create a flourishing local economy, protect the environment, and care for our most vulnerable. They told us that visionary leadership can help them build a safe and prosperous future for their children and grandchildren.