KENORA – POLITICS – Since the legislature rose in June and MPPs were sent back to our ridings, I have been focused on meeting with people in communities across the riding.
Whether on the doorstep, at trade shows or at other events, speaking with you is not only the most important part of my job, but it is also my favourite. It provides me with an opportunity to learn more about the issues of concern to you, while giving me a greater understanding of the types of initiatives and programs that you would like to see.
Certainly this information, as well as my annual budget survey, provide me with invaluable feedback that help me decide which initiatives I should support and which issues I will be fighting.
For instance, for much of past year I have received a great deal of feedback related to the high price of auto insurance, and I shared that information with my caucus colleagues who joined me in pushing for a reduction in premiums to be included in the last provincial budget. Similar feedback led to me getting involved with and pushing the provincial government to save the Experimental Lakes Area, along with many other issues.
One thing that I have learned is that many people are reluctant to bring their concerns forward for fear that they are “complaining”– a concern that couldn’t be further from the truth. If it wasn’t for people bringing their concerns forward, change would not happen.
Whether it’s concerns about the location of a highway sign which obstructs highway visibility in Rainy River, or problems with government programs such as the Family Responsibility Office or other agencies, the only way for the frustration to end is to speak up and see what I can do to help. Some solutions, such as stopping payments from being deducted after a support order has expired or having a ditch fixed, can be accomplished within a few days. And while other concerns may take a little longer to resolve, speaking out can help address the issue for you and prevent others from experiencing it in the future.
Even if my office cannot directly assist with a problem because it involves another level of government, my staff can often point you in the direction of where you can find the help you need. While we cannot get involved in legal matters, or take sides in a dispute, we can often help you navigate the system a little better to reduce your frustration. In some cases, such as those involving the Family Responsibility Office or some contracts, individuals are happy to find out that they sometimes don’t need a lawyer to resolve their situation.
Talking to you on your doorstep, at trade shows, festivals and other events provide me with essential opportunities to hear from you, but you don’t need to wait for me to knock on your door to share your thoughts. If you have a concern, drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org or call one of my local offices. Let’s have a chat!
Sarah Campbell MPP