LETTERS: Canada and the NDP

When I came to Canada, many years ago, there was no medicare, no pension plan or unemployment insurance.

When I came to Canada, many years ago, there was no medicare, no pension plan or unemployment insurance.

Canada did not have a distinctly Canadian flag nor anthem. There was no Agricultural Land Reserve (ALR) in B.C., to protect our farm land. All of these social accomplishments we cherish  now, were the direct results of the NDP party’ s work. Medicare was brought in by Tommy Douglas  in Saskatchewan (1961). The pension plan, unemployment insurance, and just about all social benefits we rely on today were introduced or pushed through in minority governments by the NDP.

If Mr Barret’ s NDP in B.C. would not have established the ALR, we probably would not have a Fraser and Okanagan valley left, supplying us with fruit, vegetables and wine.

The Canadian flag was also brought in with the help of the NDP by prime minister Lester B. Pearson and the anthem by governor general Edward Schreyer, former NDP premier of Manitoba.

All in all looking back, the NDP, though never being a federal government, changed the face of Canada. I cannot imagine what our country would look like without medicare and all the other social institutions the NDP always fought for and helped to implement.

It is time to give them a chance now on the federal plain. Who knows, Canada may finally change to a peace loving country again, envied by the whole world.

Erika and Norbert Ricker

Penticton