UCP leadership candidate Brian Jean meets supporters in Lethbridge

Jean told LNN that he has heard from many residents of Lethbridge that they are concerned about encampments and crime in the community.

READ MORE: City of Lethbridge moves to clean-up homeless encampment

READ MORE: Lethbridge ranked #1 in Canada on Crime Severity Index in 2021

Jean was a litigation lawyer in the 1990s and says he is as frustrated by the “revolving door” justice system as other people are.

“We need to change that, and there are opportunities to change it, but we need to have the facilities to be able to do that, and oftentimes, taxpayers aren’t prepared to do that,” says Jean. “We need to have a realistic conversation about what and how we keep people from doing half-time and two-thirds time and when the time they get sentenced to time [served].”

He also mentioned wanting to create youth mental classes in Grades 6-12 as a longer-term solution to problems such as crime.

Healthcare & Doctor Shortage

Many communities across the province have been struggling with a lack of family physicians and other healthcare professionals for quite some time.

To help address this, Jean said he would “remove restrictions” on nurse practitioners and ensure that “they could practice what they’re supposed to practice.”

The leadership candidate says Alberta would need to hire more nurses, which includes bringing more into the province from other jurisdictions.

“That means we have to pay sufficiently to attract them here, and we have to have an environment where they want to work, which means we have to provide them with a good environment, a positive environment, one that enriches them and does not deplete them ,” says Jean.

READ MORE: Lethbridge City Council approves measures to recruit doctors

Jean says he wants to make improvements to Alberta’s public health care system.

“I think the public health care system and the Canada Health Act is something we have to act within and I respect that,” says Jean. “I think the issue is not really an issue of money, it’s more the issue of disorganization of the organization. We have one of the largest employers in Canada, being AHS, and it is very expensive and provides bad services.”

Unity

Jean told LNN that it is ironic that Jason Kenney was the leader of the “United” Conservative Party, despite it being anything but united over the past couple of years.

On a provincial level, he says that fostering a sense of unity within Alberta’s largest conservative political party is among his top priorities.

When LNN asked Jean what it would take to unite Albertans, he responded, “defeating the NDP.”

He believes that the possibility of the New Democrats returning to power in Alberta would be a big enough issue that it would bring conservatives from all parts of the province together.

As a general policy, Jean believes that fighting for the freedoms of all Albertans is something everyone can get behind.

UCP leadership race

Jean is one of seven people running to lead the UCP. The full list of candidates is as follows:

  • Leela Aheer
  • Todd Loewen
  • Rebecca Schulz
  • Rajan Sawhney
  • Brian Jean
  • Danielle Smith
  • Travis Toews

Since the UCP is the governing political party in Alberta, the winner of this race will also become the next premier.

The new party leader will be chosen on October 6, 2022.

For more information on the UCP leadership candidates and how to take part in the process of choosing a new leader, go to the United Conservatives website.

On May 18, 2022, Premier Jason Kenney announced his resignation as UCP leader following a leadership review vote. While Kenney did secure a slight majority of party member votes at 51.4%, he said it does not constitute a clear mandate, and that Albertans deserve a leader who can truly unite the province.

READ MORE: Jason Kenney resigns as UCP leader

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