Women make up just over 50 per cent of the Canadian population, yet they still remain under-represented in federal politics.
During the last federal election, 533 women campaigned to be a Member of Parliament, but only 88 women were elected — 26 per cent of the seats in the House of Commons.
To encourage more women to get involved in politics, Equal Voice, a national, multi-partisan organization, created the initiative “Daughters of the Vote.”
The initiative was open to young women between the ages of 18 and 23 and 338 women — one from each federal riding — attended the leadership forum in Ottawa.
Tiana Weasel Moccasin, a first-year student at Lethbridge College, was selected to represent the Lethbridge riding.
The application process required applicants to share three issues they care about most.
Weasel Moccasin wrote about missing and murdered Indigenous women, the fentanyl crisis on First Nations reserves and the need to expand and improve First Nations, Metis and Indigenous education throughout the school system.
Castle road to be paved
A paved highway and a fresh water supply will soon welcome visitors to the Castle Mountain Resort and the province’s new Castle River provincial parks.
Engineers’ planning for $20-million worth of projects will begin shortly, says Environment and Parks Minister Shannon Phillips. Paving Highway 774 to the ski hill will follow next year.
Speaking in Lethbridge, the minister said the work will also include a $4.7-million potable water pipeline between Beaver Mines and Cowley, backed by both the provincial and federal governments.
“These projects will create jobs and support the local economy in southwestern Alberta,” she said. “They will also bring more visitors to the Castle parks to experience the natural beauty of the Crown of the Continent.”
Steve Kotch dead at 73
Pioneering Lethbridge travel agent and Disneyland tour conductor Steve Kotch has died.
Best known as organizer of the city’s Christmas lights tour — for more than 50 years — the entrepreneur died in hospital here Tuesday, at the age of 73 years.
Family members in the U.S. say funeral arrangements will be announced when completed.
Then known as Stephen Kotch Jr., he took over the family’s transportation business at age 20, when his father died young in 1964. His grandfather, the first Stephen Frederick Kotch, opened a limousine “touring car” business here in 1927.
Later, with coal mines operating north and west of the city, he started Lethbridge Northern Bus Lines and ran commuter service to mining communities as far north as Picture Butte and Turin.
Branching into the bus tour business, the family added long-distance highway coaches and organized family-oriented tours across Canada and the U.S.
Kotch was a member of Lethbridge City Council from 1969 to 1974, when he ran unsuccessfully for the mayor’s office. At the same time, he was a director of the organization that brought the Canada Winter Games to Lethbridge in 1975.
Chamber proposes facility
The Lethbridge Chamber of Commerce hopes city council will believe in their vision for a future multi-use Convention and Arts Centre in Lethbridge.
The project would combine a performing arts theatre, a convention centre and an art gallery for the University of Lethbridge. Last Monday, the chamber requested council consider its development in the next Capital Improvement Program.
There has been growing demand from some sectors of the community to develop each of these projects on their own. For years, Exhibition Park has been working towards its plan to build a $91-million Trade and Convention Centre and Agriplex. A Performing Arts Centre Steering Committee, along with the Allied Arts Council, have been building support for a new $60-million facility since 2009.
Council has already set aside funding for both in the 2018-2027 CIP — $25 million for Exhibition Park and $10 million for a Performing Arts Centre.
Over the last several months, the chamber has been asked to provide support for each of these projects separately, said Harry Gross, the chamber board’s president. The chamber believes combining the three into one multi-use facility could address financial challenges and potential competition against each other when council begins CIP budget discussions in May.