All four pillars of my platform are interconnected, rely on each other, and work together to build a bright future for our city. Our community will only be stronger through connected and compassionate people, efficient services, and resilient businesses.
Offering everyone a space to belong includes creating opportunities for people to find meaningful work and connecting local employers with skilled and qualified employees.
Developing and retaining our local workforce is key to our city’s economic recovery. I’m committed to exploring and supporting ways to develop and retain our local workforce. I want to keep our talent in Lethbridge. This includes:
- Working with community organizations, educational institutions, and businesses to identify what career opportunities are available in our community and how to access them. This includes an information-sharing strategy about employment and skills-building opportunities.
- Advocating for and finding creative ways to promote local practicum placements, internships, co-ops, and applied studies in sectors throughout our community.
- Connecting graduates and job seekers to local opportunities by supporting the organizations that are already making those connections, and working with existing and new businesses that are making commitments to support our post-secondary graduates in Lethbridge.
What does this mean for you? I want to make it easier for job seekers and employers to connect in our city and region. I don’t want you to relocate to advance in your career. I want employers to find the employees they need right here in Lethbridge.
We are well-positioned to get moving on these connections. In a recent Southwest Alberta Regional Skills study:
- There is a willingness from both businesses and educational institutions to work together to better align training with opportunities.
- Employers in the region report having trouble finding the right people for the jobs they are providing while many job seekers cannot find employment in the industry they are trained for.
As a result, Economic Development Lethbridge and other regional partner organizations are:
- Developing labour market information to support decision making.
- Pursuing programs that attract top talent and increase talent retention.
- Increasing efforts to align training and skills with demand.
- Creating expanded work-integrated learning opportunities.
We can support Economic Development Lethbridge and our other regional partner organizations with these initiatives.
To develop and retain our local work force, I’m committed to supporting and advocating for our post-secondary and other educational and skills-building institutions as places for investment. A commitment to supporting this industry in Lethbridge will provide for future opportunities in economic development, and in educating future generations.
Their innovative approaches to program offerings and skills development, and their willingness to work with business to better align training with opportunities are what will help us recover and drive our economy forward.
We’re fortunate to have 4 post-secondary institutions in our city:
- University of Lethbridge
- Lethbridge College
- Reeves College
- Red Crow College
We are also fortunate to have other skills-building institutions in our community that can assist with career development and skills training. These include everything from learning English and improving basic computer skills to upgrading for specific industries.
What does this mean for you? Whether it is a first diploma or degree, skills upgrading, or changing your career, these institutions are here for everyone in our community. We are able to do our own skills development right here at home. Our city boasts some of the highest rated post-secondary institutions in the country, and all of these institutions are here to fulfill our educational and career needs.
I’m committed to focussing on regional partnerships and working co-operatively towards intermunicipal planning initiatives to build our region. It’s time we started looking at the bigger picture and planning as a region. This includes working with our neighbouring municipalities to unite provincially and federally as a region.
Lethbridge is a regional hub in Southern Alberta for trucking and trade, agriculture and agri-food, logistics, health care services, culture, and tourism. What’s good for our region is good for our city.
What does this mean for you? Presenting as a united region offers our city strategic opportunities to work with the provincial and federal governments. It highlights our unique regional strengths and ensures we’re as competitive and as attractive as markets such as the Calgary and Edmonton regions.
It means business investment attraction, business retention and expansion, and entrepreneurship and innovation for our region, all of which lead to job creation. It will pay for services and build a vibrant Southern Alberta community.
We have so many great spaces to explore in this city including our downtown core. Just as Lethbridge is a hub for our region, our downtown core should be a vibrant hub for our community.
I’m committed to helping support and create a vibrant downtown that becomes a hub for:
- Safe, secure, and diverse housing opportunities
This would include supporting current and new strategies for investment and attraction to our downtown.
This also includes a commitment to supporting strategies for those experiencing homelessness, those experiencing addictions, and safety in our community – I will be talking more about these in next week’s post.
What does this mean for you? You’ll be able to enjoy a vibrant and active downtown space.
Vote for me to be your elected representative and your voice on Lethbridge City Council. I don’t claim to have all the answers, but I will represent you and our city. I will ask questions and listen because I also want to learn.
I want to hear from you. I want to know what services you use and how you believe we could make services more efficient and build a better city.
I believe in exchanging information and building relationships. If there is something in my campaign you would like to provide feedback on, or talk about, I welcome the opportunity to hear from you.
Watch for more to be released next week.