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Farrington named Liberal candidate in Fort McMurray-Cold Lake

Last Updated Sep 12, 2019 at 10:39 am MST

PHOTO. CEO of the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation, Maggie Farrington will run as a Liberal candidate in the upcoming federal election scheduled for Oct. 21, 2019. Supplied by Maggie Farrington and the Liberal Party of Canada.

The Liberal Party of Canada announced Maggie Farrington will run as their party’s candidate in the upcoming federal election.

In this her first foray into politics as a candidate, Farrington said she’s eager to start campaigning.

“To choose forward, we’ve got to choose something different for the benefit of all the people in this riding.”

She currently serves as the CEO of the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation and Chair of Wood Buffalo Housing and Development.

Also, Farrington served as the Public Director of the Colleges and Institutes of Canada since 2017.

Prior appointments include Chair of the Keyano College Board of Governors and Vice-Chair of the Wood Buffalo Recovery Committee.

She was also a board member of Girls Inc. of Northern Alberta.

A voice for change

Farrington began her professional law career as a criminal litigator for ten years.

When she moved to Fort McMurray more than seven years ago, she shifted gears working in stakeholder relations with Indigenous communities.

Farrington said her legal and advocacy experience make her the ideal person to represent the riding.

“I have government relations experience, the depth of my legal background, my strong volunteer experience, and just really understanding the people of this riding and what they need. I’ve seen [how] things shift and evolve over my seven and a half years here, and that makes me think that change is needed, and I could be that voice for change.”

Farrington said what drew her to join the Liberal team was their balanced platform.

“Unemployment and childhood poverty are at historic lows, foreign direct investment, GDP and disposable income all continue to rise.  The Liberals did it all while respecting, women and LGBTQ+ rights, being welcoming to newcomers and respecting the environment.”

She said their purchase of Trans Mountain and environment focus are examples of the party’s pro-resource and forward-thinking mindset.

Moving forward

Since 1968, the riding was conservative, with Reform/Alliance representation in the 1990s.

However, she said the status quo is no longer acceptable.

“When I look around and talk to people, folks here want change. Folks want a stronger voice in Ottawa, and I can be that voice. We deserve more than what we have. We live in a more modern, ever-changing world and we’ve seen the impacts of global markets and how it impacted our region directly.”

Farrington said she hopes to meet incumbent MP David Yurdiga in an all-candidates debate.

She pointed to the Canada Child Tax Benefit as an example of how the current Liberal government helps middle-class families.

Farrington said over 18,000 children in Fort McMurray-Cold Lake benefit from the monthly tax credit.

“I’m a mom with school-aged kids, and I can see how this benefit helps [parents] breathe a little bit easier, and be able to be involved in activities.”

Farrington said the Liberal Party represents all Canadians, including newcomers and the most vulnerable.

“It’s the responsibility of the Member of Parliament to be the voice of all constituents. It’s really important to listen and understand the needs of all to properly advocate for those as a whole.”

She said she looks forward to meeting constituents door-to-door and at events throughout the riding.

Farrington scheduled a campaign launch party at her campaign office on McKinnon Street in Fort McMurray for Sept. 17, 2019.

Incumbent Conservative MP David Yurdiga and People’s Party of Canada candidate Matthew Barnett are also on the ballot.