After touring drought-affected areas in Saskatchewan yesterday, NDP Leader Ryan Meili and Agriculture Critic Trent Wotherspoon wrote to Premier Scott Moe and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau urging them to work together and take immediate action to help farmers and ranchers.
The text of the letter is below. Please see a PDF of the letter here.
Dear Prime Minister Trudeau and Premier Moe:
We are writing today to call for urgent action to assist Saskatchewan ranches and farms being devastated by the 2021 drought. In meeting with producers, we have heard major concerns about crop yields and access to feed and water for livestock.
The drought conditions producers are facing right now are urgent. Farm and ranch families are facing incredible pressures in an already challenging time. Failure to act now risks farm and ranch losses, deep financial and emotional impacts for families, and major negative repercussions for the Saskatchewan economy.
We are calling on you to move immediately on the development of a meaningful aid program. This is an emergency and requires action now. Producer groups are ready to lead the way in developing a program that will assist producers in accessing feed and water for livestock and helping compensate for financial losses.
Seeing the conditions today remind me of the drought and insect problems I (Ryan Meili) saw growing up on a farm in the 1980s in Southwest Saskatchewan. We know that climate change will make events like this more frequent and more damaging into the future. We need a serious plan to get producers and ranchers through this drought year and a long-term plan to ensure the success of the agriculture sector on which we all rely. We need your two governments to work together to make this happen.
We urge you to act quickly and we are ready to assist in any way we can.
Ryan Meili, M.L.A Trent Wotherspoon, M.L.A.
Leader of the Official Opposition Official Opposition Critic for Agriculture