Frustrating slowness compared to speed of action

The Sylvan Lake region’s explosive growth in recent decades has not led to the recognition our community’s 12,000 plus people

The Sylvan Lake region’s explosive growth in recent decades has not led to the recognition our community’s 12,000 plus people should have so we have to raise our voices.

Having lived in many Alberta communities, we’ve seen the strength of the community fabric where there are strong, deep, historic roots. Things like hospitals were started years and years ago and still remain. Retail businesses like car dealerships and farm implement companies along with all the peripheral businesses have existed equally as long because these communities have been regional hubs to the agricultural community drawing from miles around.

We think of communities where we’ve resided like Vermilion, Vegreville, North Battleford and Stony Plain. Their bases are broad and diverse. They have businesses which have served many generations under ownership of the same families. And with that has always been the owners’ active involvement in business, culture and political life.

That’s the only thing that’s lacking in Sylvan Lake, in our mind.

If we’d been considered a regional centre rather than a tourist resort 50 or 60 years ago, our current status and amenities would be much more enhanced.

Look at Innisfail or Lacombe or Rocky Mountain House.

These are communities with deep roots, well planted and with visionary people in leadership roles for many, many years, active and influencing the future direction of their communities.

While Sylvan Lake has not lacked from the visionary people in leadership, there’s just been too few of them until our recent growth spurt which we’d suggest started about 20 years ago (in 1991) when our population topped the 4,000 mark.

But by then the world was changing. Business decisions were being made differently. Health care decisions were being made differently. We were, in essence, too late to reap the rewards some of the other communities in Alberta have enjoyed.

That’s why our residents and neighbours need to be more vocal and more passionate in impressing everyone who will listen that we need a more comprehensive model for health care.

The committee that has been working on the urgent care centre campaign for the past year has done an excellent job in preparing their information, galvanizing the population and trying to move this agenda through the frustratingly slow decision making of provincial authorities and government.

We know we’re not going to get an emergency centre or hospital — not yet. But an urgent care centre is certainly a short term solution to tide us over as our population continues to increase.

If this were strictly a business decision being made by a private enterprise the value would have been recognized long ago and we’d have better services for our residents.

Yet we have to wait for Alberta Heath Services to integrate Sylvan Lake’s needs with those of many other Central Alberta communities to determine if we’ll even make the cut for a short term or long term solution to our medical needs. We’ve been overlooked in the past. Will it happen again?

Our doctors have been lobbying for years without the desired success. A committee of 18 people have been presenting their case for the past year.

We’re told the health minister realizes there’s a need in Sylvan Lake. But now we continue to wait for someone to act on that need.

The ludicrous part of the wait is the huge benefit an urgent care centre in Sylvan Lake could provide to people accessing Red Deer Regional Hospital and the staff there.

We believe that point’s been made. We believe it’s time for Sylvan Lake’s rallying cry for an urgent care facility to be heard.

We also believe all our organizations and residents need to get behind the urgent care committee’s recently announced fundraising campaign to show that we’re willing to put up our money — and money always talks — to get the result we need.

Please consider what you can do and then act to support the call for an urgent care centre for all our residents and visitors.

Just Posted

Three-year collective agreement reached for Lodge employees

Highlights include wage increases and more evenly distributed on-call work

Ice fisherman hooks massive catch from Sylvan Lake

Ron Rivard caught the 43 inch jackfish this morning

Sylvan Laker running for UCP candidate

Victor Sloboda is running for UCP Candidate for the upcoming MLA by-election

Gayle Langford adds name to UCP candidate contest

Langford is one of six running for the UCP candidacy

Former MLA Don MacIntyre’s case adjourned

MacIntyre’s case will be seen in court again in April

Ottawa proposes restricted pot labels, packages

Packaging will include red stop sign with marijuana leaf and ‘THC’

Senate backs bill to legalize recreational marijuana

Justin Trudeau reminded senators that his government was elected on a promise to legalize pot

Break and enter to Ponoka farm home while resident was inside

Caucasian suspects quickly entered the home and stole several items Tuesday afternoon

10-15 cm expected for parts of Central/Northern Alberta

Lacombe and south can expect around 2-7 cm of snow today and into tonight

Heavy ice off Canada coast strands pod of dolphins, fixating small town

The small Newfoundland community, Heart’s Delight, is fixated on plight of trapped dolphins

Foreign election interference a reality, says Trudeau after Putin re-election

Trudeau said the heavy use of social media and interference by foreign actors are the new reality in elections.

Canadians joining #DeleteFacebook amid fears of electoral meddling

Privacy experts say numerous Canadians are taking to other social media platforms to join in on the #DeleteFacebook hashtag

Schools close as spring snow storm tracks toward Maritime provinces

Schools are closing across the Maritime provinces as a spring snow storm tracks towards the region.

Son of late Canadian professor fights for mother’s release from Iran

Mehran Seyed-Emami’s father, an Iranian-Canadian professor, died in an Iranian jail after being accused of spying.

Most Read