Prime Minister Justin Trudeau promised collaboration with opposition parties in a throne speech ringing in the era of a minority Liberal era on Thursday.
Although the speech offered few details of Trudeau’s agenda, it was about tone, attempting to demonstrate to Canadians that Trudeau’s Liberals — reduced to 157 seats, 13 shy of a majority, on Oct. 21 — have heard the message sent by voters after a particularly nasty, hyper-partisan campaign.
But North Okanagan-Shuswap MP Mel Arnold said that was a wasted opportunity.
“The Trudeau government had the opportunity to present a clear plan of how it intends to support and secure our communities, economies and collective future,” he said. “Rather than presenting a clear plan for the future, the Trudeau government presented a vague agenda, short on details and lacking in vision.”
Arnold noted the speech also lacked any attention paid to the “mounting crisis” in the forestry sector in B.C. that drives economies across the province, including the North Okanagan-Shuswap.
“Despite these omissions and faults, the speech did touch on issues that I have been seeking federal support for,” Arnold said, including housing, resources to fight the opioid crisis, boosting the public heath sector and supporting health services and water supplies in Indigenous communities.
“In the coming Parliament, I will continue to represent the needs and priorities of the North Okanagan-Shuswap and fight for policies and laws that help secure the collective future for all Canadians.”
— with Canadian Press files