Brandon East

Questions Asked of Candidates

1. How have disability issues affected you and your family? 

2. What do you see as being the greatest accessibility challenges within your constituency and what will you do to address these challenges?

Candidate Responses

Manitoba Liberal Party Candidate - Vanessa Hamilton

Answer 1: My late father had chronic diseases type 2 diabetes, heart disease and then congestive heart failure in his final years. I have witnessed friends and family struggle with addiction and mental health conditions.         

It is important that I take time for myself to keep well physically, mentally and spiritually so that I can be a service to others.

Answer 2: On the campaign trail I have met many people at the door. The greatest challenge I've heard is that people with disabilities want to be productive and be included in their community but have difficulty finding work or volunteer opportunities.

The first thing I would like to do if elected is to start building intergovernmental relationships by creating a Westman Economic Development Committee. Organizations and governments such as the MP, MLA's, City Council/City of Brandon, BU president, ACC president and Brandon Chambers of Commerce would be a strong voice for economic development for the region and bring recommendations to the current provincial and federal governments. Including groups such as Indigenous people and people with disabilities would be a priority.

New Democratic Party Candidate - Drew Caldwell

Answer 1: Disability issues have personally affected me and my family, including having to address serious mobility and accessibility challenges associated with chronic illness and aging. My two closest family members live with serious mobility challenges. Accessibility, both within the home and within the community, is a constant challenge. In the home environment, these challenges can be met through architectural/structural accommodations. Within the community, these challenges can only be met through a combination of thoughtful community/business leaders and government regulation, which provides for such things as curb cuts, automatic doors and dedicated parking stalls. Provincial legislation mandating change is an important part of making progress in this regard.

Answer 2: The most significant accessibility challenges that have been brought to my attention within Brandon East relate to sidewalk curb cuts, public sidewalks and access/egress to buildings. I will work with the City of Brandon and business owners to rectify these issues. I am proud that our NDP government has provided the funding assistance to municipalities and community organizations for these types of projects in the past and look forward to doing so again in the future.

Progressive Conservative Party of Manitoba Candidate - Len Isleifson

Answer 1: I could spend time and go into detail how my family has spent a large number of years with disability issues related to health that has limited ability to enjoy all that life has to offer. I could also talk about how I have three close relatives who are affected by Down Syndrome and two who are affected with Multiple Sclerosis. Instead, the discussion should be more around developing a society and community that is more accessible for education, barrier reduction, job creation and housing for the disabled.

As a regional manager in the healthcare field, I have experienced a number of situations where more resources are required to ensure an all-inclusive approach is taken for folks with disabilities, both intellectual and physical.

Answer 2: The biggest challenge I see in the constituency is the duty to educate on the needs of those effected with a disability and how we can all work together to remove barriers. We need to ensure those with a disability have freedom of mobility, but also freedom to experience the education and work lives they are capable of obtaining.