Bridging the gaps in support for the full spectrum of Edmonton's vulnerable must be done.

On low income housing, the city has a responsibility to facilitate opportunities for peoples of all socioeconomic backgrounds to live in our mature communities because their unique and historic nature is of value to all. We need to ensure that this principle is respected on an ongoing basis as new developments are considered for our neighborhoods.

On homelessness; I prefer the term vulnerable Edmontonians because the complexity of this issue extends far beyond a lack of housing. We need to support services across the spectrum of need and strengthen communication between service levels. Supporting drop in centers, housing first, and educational programs are all relevant.

On the Opioid crisis; healthcare is a provincial jurisdiction. This said the city has a role to play in ensuring its residents have adequate access to the services and programs provided by the province. Furthermore, the safety of residents is important and I would advocate proactively to ensure my provincial counterparts are aware of my resident's needs.

Vote Caroline Matthews.

Residents deserve respect. 

Many who live in our mature communities have invested decades of their lives maintaining properties, new families have moved in and renovated homes, others have contributed in countless small ways to the vibrancy of neighbourhoods through community league development, little libraries, or creating benches for their boulevard and sidewalk. We deserve a strong voice at City Hall to represent our communities with a balanced approach to renewal and development. Walking through our mature communities I have seen where infill has been implemented respectfully, and I have seen where it has negatively impacted neighbours fences, skylines, and even the foundations of their homes. City Council needs to listen, protect the homeowners, and hold developers to full account for impacting existing homeowners.

Encouraging the positive benefits of development can be done, but it is your elected representative’s job to ensure rules are in place and adhered to by developers.

Vote Caroline Matthews.

A well-defined and relatable leadership philosophy is essential for any elected official because as your representative it is what will guide my actions and advocacy on your behalf. It will ensure I remain consistent and reliable. I believe it is time for residents to be heard, not told. Residents deserve the respect of having a leader who looks them in the eye, on their doorstep. The principle of proactive accessibility is core to the leadership Ward Métis deserves. This principle is important because it is only through a personal, in-person connection to the entire diversity of Ward Métis residents that I can truly champion your needs.

Being engaged with the diversity of perspectives & identities that Ward Métis residents have to share is what will ensure that I can make decisions on your behalf. I will not disappear into an office at city hall and draw my priorities only from the relationships I build there. I will be in our community. I will build on my relationships with the charities, service providers, and the unions who work here. I will enhance my relationships with the francophone, ethnic, and immigrant communities who enrich the cultural expressions here. I will invest in my relationship with you directly as an Edmontonian.

To close this statement on my personal philosophy & how I believe diversity informs it, I want to acknowledge the first peoples of this land. I present as white and do not claim an indigenous identity however my grandmother was Métis. From her, I have a francophone identity and I am fluent in French. As an elected representative, I will acknowledge the history of oppression faced by First Nations, Métis, and other indigenous peoples. I will acknowledge the ongoing intergenerational trauma which we as a society have to work with indigenous people to address. Together we have entered into a period of healing, of sharing difficult truths. We have started down a path of shared reconciliation. If elected I will work to continue our common journey down this path and advance the recommendations of the truth and reconciliation commission.

Vote Caroline Matthews.

Sacrificing day to day transit services for investments in the LRT is not acceptable.

Recent alterations have reduced both the accessibility & effectiveness of our public transit system. There is a complex network of reasons for these changes, but the core issue is overspending, delays, and mismanagement of capital projects. Notably, the LRT.  

Unfortunately, despite better alternatives being available the current city hall has committed us to expanding the LRT. Federal/provincial dollars are committed. Contracts have been signed. We are stuck on the tracks, and turning now will only cause a derailment.

What I will do as your councillor is ensure the developments are done responsibly. I will look with a critical eye at contracts to ensure tax dollars are being spent in a way that protects residents. Cost overruns on these projects must stop. They must finish on time. Designs for the West LRT are decided, but any designs for the proposed South LRT line must ensure vehicle traffic is not impacted.

I will hold city hall and administration accountable.  Having only five out of twenty-six neighbourhoods covered by on-demand transit is not acceptable. The city must meet a minimum standard of care for the students, seniors, & vulnerable who rely on our busing system. This includes full coverage by programs such as on-demand and having through neighbourhood busing for large neighbourhoods like Ottewell.

Finally, I will advocate for better alternatives like bus rapid transit (BRT) which Ward Metis residents can benefit from immediately. BRT can be available to help residents travel directly to West Edmonton, UofA, Downtown, and Kingsway (NAIT) from centres like Alberta Ave, Beverly & Capilano which won't be serviced by the new LRT. This is a reasonable request to ask for in exchange for our tax dollars going to the West & south line LRT projects despite our misgivings.

Vote Caroline Matthews.

Edmonton’s business community is made up of resilient, generous, and innovative entrepreneurs. 

They’ve demonstrated perseverance in the face of lockdowns, rising taxes, and an increasingly burdensome regulatory environment over the past years. Our small businesses want city services to be provided with a customer focus. They’re paying their fair share, and are happy to continue to do so but they expect that in return their permit applications, licensing, and other services are provided in a timely, professional, and efficient manner. Time is money. They provide residents with good customer service. They know what it is. It's time the city provided them the same.

Beyond services, we need to continue to make smart investments. We have beautiful business districts in Ward Métis including the Beverly, Alberta Avenue, and French Quarter BIAs. Each of these have invested not only directly in their businesses and local amenities, but also by supporting local social services, beautifying their areas with art & murals, and attracting cultural events & festivities. We are blessed to have the socially conscious business community we have and should continue to engage them as full partners in Edmonton’s ongoing economic recovery & cultural growth.

Finally, businesses need the basics all Ward Métis residents want to see. They want to be respected when they reach out to their councillor or a city employee. They want to know that there are community partners who can protect them & make their customers feel safe to visit them. They want to feel they have an agency to inform officials about their concerns and have an advocate in big changes planned for their communities.

I look forward to bringing this message forward at City Hall.

Vote Caroline Matthews.

We need to address the climate crisis. 

It is time to move forward, to get out from behind administration desks, and have a bias for ACTION. We need a municipal government that understands how it can effectively support positive and sustainable change through our essential services, development standards, and local economic systems.

Supporting positive and sustainable change through our essential services means neighbourhood electrical buses need to be purchased, their use made affordable and accessible. Installation of LED streetlights is a change which stands to save the city both money and reduce carbon output. We need to put in better protocols for city work activities to ensure that city vehicles - like snow plows - are operating when necessary, not idling, and not running unnecessary routes.

Developing a city that works is on track by ensuring we have modern standards for new buildings including high quality alternative materials which lower the need for heating and A/C systems in high rises and commercial spaces. Implementing cogeneration in city facilities may be the single biggest cost and carbon savings currently available. On a residential level we need directed support which prioritizes those most in need; not insider announcements for subsidies that are exhausted before residents can apply. For example, infrared imaging may have a promising application allowing the city to direct dollars to homeowners most in need of grants for green energy retrofits.

Local economies are at the heart of Edmonton’s cultural vibrancy. They power our farmer’s markets, our festivals, and our small businesses. The folks who run them can and do innovate. There is a green economy ready to bud and to bloom in Edmonton, and with support it will offer residents opportunities to make green decisions with their dollars. On a larger scale, we should support green industrial projects. Solar, hydrogen, and similar green developments should be encouraged where appropriate so that our winter city remains prosperous and green.

Our river valley is a hallmark of the environmental priorities of our city's residents. 

It must be protected. Not just with political statements but with vigor and resourcefulness. Industrial projects like the E.L. Smith Solar Farm & Gold Bar Wastewater Treatment plant expansion have no place in our ribbon of green. I'm the only candidate who took direct action by delivering information in the mailboxes of local residents to inform them of the public hearing last April which was rescheduled for May 10th. Such projects should always be zoned away from residents, communities, and parks because the development our river valley does need is effective infrastructure upkeep & the installation of amenities.

Parks are a public service which should be maintained, preserved and available for all residents. Trails bridging key stretches of park space like that north of Forest Heights may be fenced off for years at a time awaiting upkeep, despite the fact that hundreds of thousands of Edmontonians rely on these spaces for active transport & recreation. Additionally, the installation of public washrooms & water taps in high traffic areas would improve residents' enjoyment of major park spaces.

Furthermore, Edmonton Ski and Bike Club has created an active hub along the River Valley.  The shared pathway in front of the club is used by many Edmontonians. I believe selecting other niche locations where small community based businesses can offer park goers kayak or canoe rentals, beverages, and similar amenities will make our park space more accessible and enjoyable for all. 

I will ensure our city shows bold governance and elected accountability. I will enable a broader vision and consideration of factors influencing the long-term revitalization of our climate, economy, and ribbon of green. I will provide the citizens of Edmonton an opportunity to hold their elected city council accountable for the generational strategic decisions affecting our spaces.

Vote Caroline Matthews.