What Brings You Down?
Alberta’s other contagious and deadly disease – the UCP virus.
Our Alberta provincial government is failing. Unsurprisingly.
Doctors are fleeing the province. Rural clinics are closing leaving the UCP voters high and dry without medical care. All the better to create a vacuum that will be filled by Kenney’s plans to privatize healthcare.
I call my doctor about my health and I am rerouted to another doctor at the practice. I tell the doctor how sorry I am at the healthcare workers’ treatment by the UCP. Kenney tore up the doctor’s contract just before the pandemic. The doctor thanks me for these words of support and then begins to cry. I understand.
Workers at Cargill, a large local meat-packing plant that processes one-third of Canadian beef, warned of coronavirus. They were ignored and sent back to the workplace having tested positive. The contagion exploded and more than half of the 400 cases in the area are now connected with this plant. Sixty to seventy percent of the workers are Filipino. The Minister of Agriculture who flew into the legislature on the coattails of his father, a federal MP, trained for his job in part by working for Trump’s 2016 campaign. He even wears the polo shirt favoured by White Supremacists. The government agency investigates the factory via FaceTime. Alberta’s Chief Medical Officer notes that some of the contamination occurred via carpooling when one of the passengers had “sniffles.” There is no articulation of the fact these workers live and work communally to save money to send home to their families. Many are Temporary Foreign Workers who are ineligible for citizenship and must return home after four years. No surprise at the Alberta UCP government’s cavalier disinterest in supporting these workers. (I could give you supporting material for all of this, but even sleuthing for the information that informs me about the UCP depresses me. Here is a summary timeline with links..
When In Doubt, Walk.
I could have stayed home and zoomed or FaceTimed someone all day. Instead I walked. Once in the morning and once in the afternoon. Always at a distance from my companionable neighbours who accompanied me. Five or six miles or ten kilometres or enough mileage for one of our first spring days here at latitude 53.