Favourite Local Politician

Robert-Falcon Ouellette

1. Robert-Falcon Ouellette
2. Wab Kinew
3. Brian Bowman

Since Robert-Falcon Ouellette was elected Winnipeg Centre’s MP in October 2015, he’s kept busy.

“I dream of sleep when I’m sleeping,” Ouellette says.

Ouellette’s trying to set up a guaranteed annual income pilot with PEI’s premier. “He would be interested in pairing with the federal government to see if there’s a possibility of doing a pilot project in Prince Edward Island,” Ouellette says.

He hopes the project would then make its way to Manitoba.

Ouellette made the news recently for questioning the Site C dam project in B.C. 

“My problem with the Site C dam is I don’t believe the communities who are directly impacted have given their prior, free and informed consent to the project, which falls under the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples,” Ouellette says.

While this isn’t directly related to Winnipeg, it’s part of his larger vision of a nation-to-nation relationship between the federal government and Indigenous communities.

“That’s a long-term project that I’m figuring out how I can actually influence the decisions that are being made in Ottawa a little bit more,” he says.

Issues that he’s working on closer to home include reducing clawbacks to the Canada Child Benefit.

“The idea was not to enrich provinces, but to make sure that families had enough to be able to feed their kids,” he says.

He’s also working to do away with payday lenders, diversify Canada Post’s revenue streams and develop an Indigenous version of the Canada Food Guide.

Still, Ouellette says he is “not busy enough,” though he is grateful to be named a favourite local politician.

Published in Volume 71, Number 13 of The Uniter (December 1, 2016)

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