THIRD-PARTY REVIEW OF UCP’S COVID-19 RESPONSE HIDDEN FROM ALBERTANS UNTIL NEW YEAR
EDMONTON – In the latest of a series of moves by Premier Jason Kenney and the UCP to hide information about the COVID-19 pandemic from Albertans, a third-party review of the Government’s response to the public health emergency has been delayed until the New Year.
In the summer the province announced a third-party review, meant to inform Alberta’s second wave of COVID-19, was scheduled to be released in the fall.
“We all expected that the government would review their handling of the first wave so that they could make better choices leading up to the second wave,” said Alberta NDP Deputy Leader, Sarah Hoffman. “The fact that they haven’t released the report yet while we are well into the second wave already is not surprising given their poor handling of the pandemic so far.
“I guess I shouldn’t be surprised anymore, but I continue to be disappointed. It’s clear that Jason Kenney and the UCP are hiding from accountability and that they didn’t learn anything from the first wave, otherwise we wouldn’t be in the mess that we’re in right now.”
At the time of this release, Alberta has 17,821 active cases and there have been 890 deaths due to COVID-19. 570 of those deaths are from long-term care facilities in the province, which have been hardest hit by the blind spot in Alberta’s COVID-19 response.
“We are 10 months into this pandemic and not having this review ready is very disrespectful to Albertans that are counting on the government to act in ways that will save lives,” Hoffman said. “In the last 24 hours, 19 people have died. Those nineteen people had families and friends that cared for them, and their deaths could have been prevented with better preparation from the UCP.
“Schools were closed twelve weeks into the school year, our hospitals are pushed to the top level of their capacity, and our contact tracing has completely fallen apart. The UCP hasn’t had control of this pandemic at any point over the last ten months.
Jason Kenney and the UCP chose to prioritize an energy war room and have chosen to prioritize a $4.7 billion corporate giveaway over the well-being of Albertans. These choices hurt our economy, and the UCP would be wise to examine and reflect on some of their choices over the last year.”