One of the great privileges of working with the Alberta Party Caucus is getting to work with MLAs that value public service and put the needs of Albertans first. Nobody embodied that spirit of public service more than the MLA for Calgary-Mackay Nose Hill, Karen McPherson. During her time with our caucus Karen has advocated passionately on behalf of those without a voice. She has stood up for survivors of sexual assault and raised awareness around concussions. She introduced legislation to help get back to work, with a special focus on groups that are facing higher rates of unemployment and underemployment. During her time in office, Karen has embodied everything you could ask for in a public servant.
MLA McPherson announced this week that she would not be seeking re-election, and while we will miss her very much in the next legislature, all of us here at caucus wish her the very best. It has been an honour to work with you and see your dedication to improving the lives of all Albertans.
““I love our province and it doesn’t need to be made great ‘again’; our province is already great, and when we focus on what we have in common, when we look at what our common goals are and when we start rowing in the same direction, we are more than capable of making our province even greater for everyone here. I’ll continue to push for collaboration and equality because we are stronger together.”
– MLA Karen McPherson
March 6, 2019 (Calgary) – Karen McPherson, Alberta Party MLA for Calgary-MacKay-Nose Hill, announced this morning she will not seek re-election in this spring’s election. The Alberta Party Caucus appreciates her service, commitment and passion on behalf of her constituents and all Albertans. Caucus shared the following statement from MLA McPherson on her behalf:
“After a very difficult time of deliberation, I have decided not to run in the upcoming provincial election. It has been an enormous honour to serve the constituents of Calgary-Mackay-Nose Hill and I cherish the opportunities I’ve had to meet so many people I wouldn’t have crossed paths with otherwise, and to connect with parts of the community that have enriched my life greatly.
“I very deeply believe our society can only be improved by the increased participation of women, of all perspectives, in the political arena, but I find that the commitment required of public servants is beyond my capabilities right now. I have grappled with the lack of balance between the demands of the role of an MLA and my sense of responsibility to my family and myself, especially as my elderly mother, who recently completed radiation for lung cancer, recovers from her treatment. I have struggled with depression and anxiety throughout much of my time in office because of this lack of balance, especially during the time my father was very ill before he passed away in 2016.
“This has been a difficult decision to come to; I have really loved being able to speak on behalf of people who are facing challenges, from women who’ve experienced sexual abuse and assault, to people who are having a difficult time finding work. I’m very proud of the Private Member Motion I tabled to establish a Concussion Awareness and Education Day that passed unanimously, and the Private Member Bill that I introduced to help under-employed and unemployed Albertans get back to work. I’m very gratified that health care professionals will not have the opportunity to reapply for their license if they’re found guilty of sexually assaulting a patient because of my efforts.
“My deepest gratitude goes to the constituency staff for Calgary-Mackay-Nose Hill, who are very dedicated to helping our constituents access provincial government services, supporting them in times of need, and celebrating their triumphs, and I want to thank them for their kind support. Working in a constituency office is challenging and rewarding work and it takes something for people to dedicate themselves to public service, and I want to acknowledge their commitment.
“I also want to thank our Alberta Party Caucus staff whose hard work and dedication made it possible for my colleagues and I to shine in the Legislature – I appreciate them making us look good. All constituency and caucus staff at all levels of government should be given at least a 20% raise – their work is invaluable.
“I love our province and it doesn’t need to be made great ‘again’; our province is already great, and when we focus on what we have in common, when we look at what our common goals are and when we start rowing in the same direction, we are more than capable of making our province even greater for everyone here. I’ll continue to push for collaboration and equality because we are stronger together.
“Don’t let fear guide your vote in this spring’s election, or in any other election. Vote for people who inspire you and who take the time to really listen to what you care about, and who will speak up when they see that something isn’t right.
“Thank you for the opportunity to have served our province.