Kelly Whelan-Enns

News that mentions Kelly Whelan-Enns

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Q and A with St. Vital candidates

April 11, 2016

Winnipeg Free Press - The Lance contacted candidates in the April 19 provincial election to answer questions for voters. Here are responses from St. Vital candidates Jamie Moses (NDP), Colleen Mayer (PC), and Bryan Van Wilgenburg (LIB). Green Party candidate Kelly ...

CTV Winnipeg

April 6, 2016

CTV News - There is no incumbent in the electoral division of St. Vital. Manitoba election 2016 candidates: - Colleen Mayer (PC) - Jamie Moses (NDP) - Kelly Whelan-Enns (Green) - Bryan Van Wilgenburg (Liberal) ...

Questionnaire Response

Kelly Whelan-Enns - St. Vital

1. Why did you decide to run in the 2016 Manitoba election?

There are many, many reasons I am running in the 2016 Manitoba election.

I have spent 22 years working in the Environmental Non Government Organization (ENGO) sector in Manitoba and of those 22 years not once have I seen the Manitoba government get public engagement right.

Watching what happened when community organizations and businesses came together to stop Olywest from building its hog processing plant in St.Boniface was very inspiring. I was part of that. I learned a lot about how effective honest and open communication can be with communities and people who want to work together supporting their communities.

Their is also the issue of Legacy for me. I come from a political family. My grandfather Ed Whelan was an MLA with Tommy Douglas and helped build the framework in Saskatchewan for universal medicare.

Then there is my great uncle Eugene Whelan who was in Pierre Trudeau’s cabinet, and my dad ran for the NDP as a candidate back in the 70s, so I have a lot of history with Canadian politics and Prairie politics. Growing up it was pretty much all that was talked about at the dinner table. I can really say it is in my blood.

2. What experience will you bring to complement your role as MLA?

As I mentioned I have 22 years working in the ENGO sector in Manitoba This means I have 22 years of experience with policy, laws, regulations, community meetings and developing plans to help communities fund projects and move forward. I have participated in Clean Environment Commission hearings for both the Wuskwatim  and Conawapa hydro dams, as well as Public Utility Board Reviews of Manitoba Hydro’s practices.

I worked for almost 5 years for MacDonald Youth Services in a level 5 home and have seen first hand the effects of a broken child welfare system.

The last 15 years a lot of my day job has involved supporting First Nations in land use planning projects and struggling to wade through the government red tape to get things done, so I have a refined sense of how much effort it can take to actually get something done in government.

I also run my own business on the side, Ancient Design, teaching Women’s Self Defence classes and Chinese healing arts like, qigong, Tai Chi and Baguazhnag Kung Fu so I understand what running a small business is like and the demands of balancing many projects at once.


3. Is there anything in particular you would like to change in our province? In your electoral division?

One thing in particular? That is a hard question. There are quite a few things I would like to see change.

Probably the most important to me is the health and well being of my constituents. If you have a healthy and strong community educated and aware of their options and what they are capable of together then you can build sustainable momentum within the community that truly lasts.

Approximately 70% of St Vital residents are overweight or obese.  Only 11% live within a walkable distance of a grocery store.

We need to find more spaces for community gardens, develop more diverse health and wellness programs for everyone, look at the lower income families and how we can support their needs alongside everyone else’s. I would like to see more programs for kids implemented alongside more daycare spaces for parents. The province really needs to step up and support more programs for kids and youth that facilitate preventative health and lifestyle skills. The healthcare system in this province is sorely lacking in preventative and proactive programs for all ages.



4. What key issue(s) / topic(s) would like to stand for in your role as MLA, and why is it important to you?

A key issue I would stand for is a real shift towards a green economy. This is something Manitoba needs and is a win-win concepts on all levels; jobs, economic development, training opportunity and revenue for the province as well as doing our part to renew our commitment to the Kyoto Protocols the government signed to help combat climate change.Transparency and open two way communication with the peoples of Manitoba.

A key topic I would strongly support and advocate for is transparency. Transparency and open two way communication as an MLA.

Too much of the way the current government operates is by press release without community engagement.

Not enough transparency is happening with the provincial government. Not with Manitoba Hydro, not with planning, not with First Nation issues and certainly not with economic development and moving towards a green economy for the province.


5. What is one thing in particular that you value about the electoral division that you wish to represent?

To me one of the most important aspects of the St. Vital community is its diversity. This is an exceptional community full of personality and entrepreneurship and collaboration everywhere you look. If you ever spend time at the YMCA on Fermor it is a very obvious reality. All the families that use the facility demonstrate how much people enjoy sharing the space and how much people feel welcome and at home in the community. Any where you walk in the riding you will witness people from all age groups and all walks of life.

An interesting fact is that the St.Vital riding was originally established as one of twelve ‘francophone’ ridings in Manitoba back in 1870. So the riding has a history of being a culturally rich and vibrant community.

My self I am 13th generation Acadian and grew up in the francophone town of Ste. Agathe, just South of Winnipeg, so I take a certain measure of pride in being able to speak French in a francophone community. Growing up on the Red River I enjoy the fact that the St.Vital riding has two rivers as its borders North, East and West.

6. Do you have any other comments regarding your candidacy?

This will not be my first and last time running for the Green party of Manitoba. The people of Manitoba deserve a representative that has their best interests at heart and that can speak with more depth than business as usual and profits before people.