2011 Manitoba Election Archive
IMPORTANT: The information below is from the 2011 Manitoba Election.
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Thomas Heine - Flin Flon
Why did you decide to run in the 2011 Manitoba election?
My reasons for entering politics stem from a personal frustration with the existing government and its view of the North. We have been viewed as a “safe” seat for many years, yet we have seen no real benefit from providing it with support. Even something as fundamental as the delivery of health care has been allowed to deteriorate, despite concerns being brought to the attention of the Minister of Health over a period of years.
What experience will you bring to compliment your role as MLA?
I have been involved in a variety of positions in both volunteer and other organizations. As a parent I understand the need to provide our children with the skills necessary to be accepted into a post-secondary institution or the work force. As a professional geologist, I understand the upswings and downturns of the mining industry. Mining remains the foundation of our economy, and as your Flin Flon MLA I will promote both mining activity as well as economic diversification in our region.
I have demonstrated that I can act for the interests of the community. I organized and moderated the December 1 community health care form, and subsequently became chairman of the Concerned Citizens Health Care Committee in an effort to continue to apply pressure on the Provincial government and the Minister of Health to improve health care delivery.
Is there anything in particular you would like to change in our province? In your electoral division?
Our biggest challenge will be to restore confidence in the health care system in our constituency and possibly the entire Province. During the December 1 public health care forum organized by myself, citizens voiced their concerns, including access to physicians, patient transportation, wait times, access to a new clinic and lack of communication by the NOR-MAN Regional Health Authority (NRHA). Many of these issues were identified in a report compiled by a minister-appointed Review Team.
To restore confidence there must be effective communication at all levels, between patients and staff and amongst all staff members. We should consider integration of all health services across the region. This is critical to ensure proper patient follow-up care. The NRHA needs to become fully accountable to the public for all of its activities.
In the Liberal platform other health related issues are also addressed. The emphasis is on detection and prevention. The proactive treatment of FASD, addictions and other chronic ailments would ultimately save tax dollars and improve the quality of life for its victims and for society as a whole.
Patient care has to be THE priority for all associated with the health care system.
What is one thing you stand for that is not a part of your political party's platform?
The current government has tried to appear to be fair. Their actual record falls short for this constituency. The Pas and Thompson have received substantial funding for the expansion of their UCN campuses. Flin Flon got a mining academy. I would promote Flin Flon as more than a mining region.
Many programmes and initiatives devised by the current régime have a decidedly southern perspective and have limitations when applied to our Northern reality. For example, the Provincial recycling programme was mandated from Winnipeg with no consideration of our region. Our city now has to pay a significant amount of money to install a weigh scale, and will be charged $10/tonne by the Province for landfill waste. This is a not inconsiderable expenditure for our cash-strapped community. Our recycling centre needs improved facilities so collected materials can be efficiently processed.
Do you have any other comments regarding your candidacy?
The Flin Flon constituency needs a strong representative in the Legislature, one who will stand up for the needs of the North, one who understands the issues that affect ALL the residents of the region. The Liberal approach is the one that is most reasonable: address concerns and problems on a pro-active basis, not as a reaction to an emergency. This approach is the one that is most fiscally responsible and causes the least disruption to society.
What is your favourite location in the electoral division you are currently a candidate for?
This would have to be Manistikwan Falls, not the easiest place to get to. It’s a lush, damp place with a profound and subtle beauty.
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