I feel very proud about the campaigns that several smart and strong women ran in the Ward 12 by-election. First of all, they put their names forward and ran for public office.That takes courage and the willingness to put themselves out there. I remember the first time I saw my name on campaign signs and it felt funny. I got over it and I am sure these women did too. They raised money for their campaigns and research will tell you that is harder for women to do. Good for them! It seems to be easier for many women to ask for money for other people or causes and not themselves. Then there are the countless people you interact with to try to make them understand what you stand for by door knocking, meetings and forums. And add in the various social media platforms that you try to engage others in to get your message out. You also need a great support system from campaign volunteers and family and friends that help you with the little things (and not so little), like grocery shopping and childcare.

I remember well the first time I ran for School Trustee and lost.  A good friend of mine gave me a care package… chocolate, bubble bath and a magazine.   I’ll never forget that as I enjoyed it thoroughly after my defeat. I, like many others, didn’t win the first – or even the second time – I ran for public office but that doesn’t mean you give up.   I like to remind folks if you don’t successfully pass your driver’s test the first time, that you don’t give up and tell yourself that it wasn’t mean to be.  Rather you try again and again, if necessary, until you are successful.

So welcome to the ranks of those who aspire to public service as an elected official and know that it is a noble thing. You probably met some great people, learned a lot about yourself and how to run and hopefully, next time you will be successful.
We can’t ensure more woman are elected but we can, and must, encourage more women to run for office. Thank you to all who put their name forward and ran in the by-election.

Although I am not joined by another woman on council, I respect the democratic process. I sincerely wish to congratulate Moe Banga on his win and I look forward to working with him on council.

Council Connect

On September 22, 2015 City Council approved the Road Safety Strategy 2016-2020 making Edmonton the first Canadian city to officially adopt Vision Zero, the long-term goal of zero fatalities and zero major injuries on our roads.

Vision Zero is a global initiative and a bold goal that has been implemented in Sweden and in some American cities including Boston, Seattle and New York.

Developed by the Office of Traffic Safety, the Edmonton Road Safety Strategy 2016-2020 moves us toward Vision Zero. Through a Safe-Systems, evidence-based approach, we will save lives and eliminate injuries through the 5 E’s of traffic safety:

  • Engineering
  • Education
  • Enforcement
  • Evaluation
  • Engagement

One area of focus moving forward is School Safety. It is important to all of us that we protect our most vulnerable citizens, and that we create safe areas around our schools. The Office of Traffic Safety has identified 13 schools of focus. As apart of this emphasis on safety, a new state-of-the-art video analytics tool will be used.

Currently, this tool is being used for Data Collection which through analysis, will help inform the City of Edmonton on the issues around these 13 schools, and will be used to help create a plan and a strategy to create safe spaces and places around our schools.

This comprehensive strategy also includes the Edmonton & Area Traffic Safety Culture, the development of a Traffic Safety App, dedicated school zone enforcement units, driver feedback signs, and the installation of additional Pedestrian Crossing Controls.

Traffic Safety is not the responsibility of any one person or agency, rather it is something that impacts each and everyone of us. Traffic Safety is our responsibility, and together we can make a difference and save lives.

As always, you can contact me by email,  or by calling my office at City Hall, 780-496-8136.