I am saddened to learn that Gerry Rogers has already step down as leader of the Newfoundland and Labrador NDP. I know she must have her own reasons of stepping down and not to run for re-election but I am sure many people, including myself, will miss her.
I can list many of the achievements and policy proposals Gerry has long advocated or stood for throughout her time as St. John’s Centre MHA as well as former provincial NDP leader.
Bravo Gerry for initiating the Community Coalition for Mental Health; her leadership role in the provincial all party committee for mental health and addictions, and more recently call for an all-party committee on rate mitigation and Muskrat Falls.
She supported the call for more affordable, accessible housing; poverty reduction initiatives; the new Waterford Hospital Replacement; the new HMP; reinstating the adult dental program, democratic reform, fair taxation, $15-dollar minimum wage, and improvements in provincial NLPDP or pharmacare, homecare, assistive devices for all ostomates and persons with disabilities, and improvements in our provincial mental health care system.
Unfortunately, in our Newfoundland and Labrador, most voters stick to this political cycle of Liberal red governments then Tory blue governments, with only two parties taking turns ruling our province. Perhaps we need a strong three-party system in Newfoundland and Labrador? Perhaps we need to give the NDP a chance to govern? They couldn’t do any worse than the Tories or Liberals.
Historically speaking most NDP governments in other Canadian provinces have been both socially progressive and fiscally responsible in having either low deficits or balanced budgets. Oh how many times I wish there was more Gerry Rogers and Lorraine Michaels in the provincial House of Assembly. We could have a just society.
I am hopeful for the new NDP Leader Alison Coffin, and hopeful that the political pundits, like The Telegram’s Brian Jones or Russell Wangersky will not write off the New Democratic Party.
I can assure all my fellow Newfoundlanders and Labradorians that I am keeping the faith, and one day the Orange Wave will spread throughout our province.
I just want to conclude by saying Thank You Gerry!