Green Party Leader statement on Premier’s State of the Province speech

FREDERICTON – In response to Premier Higgs State of the Province speech this afternoon, Green Party leader and MLA for Fredericton South David Coon released the following statement:

“Premier Higgs has drawn a line in the sand on environmental action and a transition to a green economy during the State of the Province address, and he is standing against it. The Premier has firmly anchored self on the wrong side of history in order to maintain the status quo. He is ignoring the efforts of local businesses to expand renewable energy development but handing $20 million to foreign nuclear power developers to weigh us down with more costly and dangerous waste-generating nuclear technology. He came out firmly against the application of Canada’s clean fuel standard to the Irving Oil refinery while backing their application to the EUB to increase the price of heating oil, gasoline and diesel. 

The Premier’s revelation that the province will have a deficit of just $13 million this year is a slap in the face to all of those small business people in the hospitality, entertainment, arts and tourism sectors who are struggling to stay afloat, and desperately need targeted support to get through this pandemic.

The same could be said for those New Brunswickers facing unreasonable rent increases forcing them to look for new homes during the pandemic in a very tight rental market.  The Premier should freeze rents and evictions until his three-month review of New Brunswick’s tenancy system is completed to avoid companies from jacking up rents in the interim for fear of future rent controls.

The Premier’s claim that everything is going well does not meet the straight face test when workers in our care sector, who are already among the lowest paid in Canada are being offered zeros on wage increases for their next contracts.

I agree with the Premier that we need to become more self-sufficient as a region, but not on the backs of working people, small businesses and the environment."

Our Principles

>Living within Our Ecological Means

A culture of cooperation, caring and understanding is essential to ending violence in our society. Rehabilitation rather than vengeance must be the goal of our justice system.

> Local Self-Reliance

We must have the opportunity and the responsibility as citizens to contribute to the common good, which requires that all have the capacity to participate in community life.

> Real Democracy

Everyone must have equal access to the necessities of life and be treated with dignity and respect. Treaties with First Nations must be honoured.

> Social Justice and Equality

We must be able to participate in decisions that affect our lives and be guaranteed that our votes are reflected in the make-up of the Legislative Assembly.

> Active Citizenship

Our communities should be in control of their own destinies, supported by strong local economies, and sustained by local sources of food and renewable energy.

> A Culture of Peace and Respect

We must live within the ecological limits of the Earth, while meeting our needs without threatening our children's future or the survival of other species.

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