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News archive for April 30, 2012

NDP is on the upswing, delegates told

The growth and success of the Yukon NDP in the last few years were foremost on the minds of party members as they gathered in Whitehorse over the weekend for the party’s annual convention.

By Ainslie Cruickshank on April 30, 2012 at 3:07 pm

photo

Photo by Whitehorse Star

Liz Hanson

The growth and success of the Yukon NDP in the last few years were foremost on the minds of party members as they gathered in Whitehorse over the weekend for the party’s annual convention.

In the spring of 2010, the party had 68 members.

Today, there are more than 730.

The party would be nothing without its members, leader Liz Hanson said during her speech Saturday at the Kwanlin Dun Cultural Centre.

This time last year, the NDP was the third party, with two MLAs sitting in the legislature.

Today, the party is the official Opposition with six MLAs, said Hanson.

It was the only party to increase its share of the popular vote in the October 2011 election, she added.

Hanson will continue to serve as the NDP leader after receiving unanimous support in a leadership review.

“I’ve never had a leadership review before, so it’s gratifying and reinforces to me the importance of the commitment I’m making to this party. I want us to succeed; it’s good to see that I’ve got the support of our members,” she said in an interview Saturday.

Hanson said there were three key aspects to the convention this year.

Part of it was about gathering together, she said, but there’s a focus on policy resolutions and organizational and outreach work that needs to be done.

“We’re constantly focused on the next election, we’ve got to have a long-term plan, we keep that out there as that’s our objective; now what do we need to do to get there, that’s really what events like this are all about,” she said.

In an interview today, Hanson said the convention was a success.

“It was really energizing to be in a convention with so many people who were obviously very enthusiastic about the issues that they were bringing to the floor in terms of the resolutions that were being discussed,” she said.

Quite a few new members brought a new energy and a new lens when it came to discussing the issues.

During her formal speech, Hanson said the NDP will continue to be a constructive Opposition and stand up for what’s right for the benefit of all Yukoners.

The party will continue to demand a housing strategy from the Yukon Party and criticize the government for continuing to sit on the $13 million from the federal government designated for housing that came to light last year, she said.

Hanson said the NDP will continue to call for an inquiry into the January deaths of five Whitehorse residents from carbon monoxide poisoning in their rented Centennial Street home.

The future of the Peel watershed continues to be an NDP priority. As well, Hanson said her party will continue to call for the implementation of the final recommended land use plan, as written.

The NDP believes a society should be judged on how it treats its most vulnerable members, she said during her speech.

She vowed the NDP will continue to fight the root causes of poverty and attempt to close the growing gap between the rich and poor.

Hanson also had a message for the Yukon Party government. She said the NDP will continue to oppose the government’s bad ideas, support the good ones and put forward positive, constructive solutions of its own.

“We will continue to build a progressive movement to replace you one Yukoner at a time,” she said.

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Thomas Brewer

Apr 30, 2012 at 10:43 pm

FTA “This time last year, the NDP was the third party, with two MLAs sitting in the legislature.

Today, the party is the official Opposition with six MLAs, said Hanson.”

Technically true, but in reality they only pulled a 9% gain versus their previous outing… and that’s supposed to explain a 200% increase in their seats in the legislature?

Time for a radical rethinking of our ‘democratic’ process.

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