Redrawing democracy

by Damien C. Kurek, M.P. , Battle River- Crowfoot
A fair and independent review of electoral districts must be conducted to ensure equitable representation, a fundamental pillar of democracy. In Canada, this happens every 10 years.

For some provinces, this means redrawing the boundaries and nothing else. For others, with changing populations, it can include a change to a province’s number of ridings. Alberta is one of the provinces gaining seats in this decade’s redistribution.

This is needed to bring about fairness in the populations of each electoral district and across the country.

After the last census, in October of 2021, an independent commission was formed, and the redistribution process was officially completed last month. I would argue there is still work to do to ensure fairness for Alberta in our national democracy, including senate reform.

This redistribution process is a small step in the right direction, with the addition of three seats for the province of Alberta.

The redistribution process involves several steps, including public consultation. Proposals for new electoral boundaries are made public, and citizens and interested groups are given the opportunity to provide feedback.

This stage is critical for transparency and local input, which is invaluable due to each district’s unique characteristics.

In Battle River—Crowfoot, many voiced our opinions during the consultation process. This shows democratic values, community engagement and representation at the heart of the process.

Many constituents across the region shared their concerns with the original proposal. The independent commission listened to our concerns and in the end, the district remains largely the same.

However, there are some small changes; New Sarepta will move to the new Leduc Constituency, and the communities of Acme, Carbon, and Linden in Kneehill County will join us in this riding.

While these changes won’t happen until after the next election, I wanted to make sure you folks know all the details of the future changes. I will be disappointed to lose New Sarepta, but I look forward to representing three additional communities in Kneehill County.

I am regularly asked when the next election will be. I, like so many, hope it will be soon. And let me assure you that my caucus colleagues and I vote “no confidence” continually and are working to show how out of touch the Liberals are with regular Canadians.

Unfortunately, with the NDP’s support, the Liberals will most likely remain in power until the next fixed election date in October 2025.

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