Alberta Throne Speech: Preserving Life and Protecting the Vulnerable
Education. Palliative Care. Elder Care. Conscience. These issues have been covered in ARPA Canada’s recent policy reports. The reports, along with their recommendations, are excellent tools to help us present a biblical perspective to our civil authorities. Do they get read? Do they work? YES!
Here are some life-affirming initiatives from Alberta’s February 22, 2022 throne speech:
Continuing Care Act: The provincial government plans to introduce this Act as part of a “broader effort to protect vulnerable women and girls from sexual violence.”
Palliative Care: The government will continue efforts to improve access to palliative care. The throne speech states: “Improvements will focus on beginning palliative care as soon as possible, and keeping individuals in their homes and communities with support from those they know and love for as long as possible.” This is what ARPA Canada recommended in our Elder Care and Palliative Care policy reports. The throne speech rightly asserts that “patients facing end-of-life decisions must know that there are life-affirming options to physician-assisted suicide.”
Human Trafficking Task Force: The government “will expand its efforts to combat the scourge of this modern form of slavery.”
Missing Persons Act: Amendments will be made to this Act “to equip law enforcement with new tools to find victims of human trafficking and bring their captors to justice.”
Helping vulnerable pregnant women and girls: The government will significantly increase and expand prenatal benefits to mothers fleeing abuse and receiving income support.
Child, Youth, and Family Enhancement Act: The government will “ensure full implementation” of this act to include a motion “to simplify and accelerate the adoption process.” This will also be an opportunity for ARPA Canada to suggest amendments to family law contained in the Act. Lobby efforts have already begun on this front and will continue in the coming months.
Loss of an unborn child: Bereavement leave will be extended to employees who experience a miscarriage or stillbirth. This is the first throne speech to use the term unborn child, recognizing the humanity of our pre-born children.
Parents know what’s best for their kids: This line, often quoted by Premier Kenney, appears once again in the throne speech. The government, as recommended in our Educational Diversity policy report, will continue to support pluralism as a key principle in Alberta’s education system. Regulatory improvements are forthcoming to help new schools, including charter schools get established. Our home education supporters will be pleased to know that “home-schooled children with special needs” will be provided “access to specialized services.” Regardless of their educational choice, all Alberta students will receive the supports they need to succeed.
Well, there you have it. Our policy reports recommendations are being accepted! How cool is that? Praise God for government initiatives that support parents, preserve life, and protect the vulnerable!
Keep up the good work with relationship building and send Honourable Jason Kenney ([email protected]) a thank you note. I don’t think you’ll struggle to come up with a thank you list.