Estevan had a visitor recently as Aleana Young, the Saskatchewan NDP's opposition critic of jobs, economy, SaskPower, and forestry, stopped by to talk about local issues.

Young met with members of the Estevan City Council, the local Chamber of Commerce, local business owners, and local families.

She says that one topic that's come up a lot in the community is healthcare, specifically the MRI which is coming to the hospital.

"The MRI in particular we know has been committed to the city of Estevan, but there is no dollars attached to that. So you know to really mix some terrible driving metaphors, you can't get very far with no gas in your car."

"I think that's a big question as well as the same concerns that we hear across the province with the concerns about healthcare concerns about capacity, you know, not having to drive to Regina, if you need a cast on your arm or you need to deliver a baby. Those same issues that I think people are experiencing, unfortunately, all over the province with the local businesses closing and wages kind of stagnating." 

Young says that the best way a government can help out local healthcare is by listening to what people need.

"I think the first and most important thing, especially when it comes to Healthcare, is actually listening to healthcare workers, people on the front lines, people on the ground across the province, whether it's Estevan, whether it's Radville, Yorkton, Prince Albert people want to be involved in solving these problems.

"They have some very clear solutions, whether it's making improvements, things like home care, or looking at some very simple changes that could be made to get the maternity, labour, and delivery up and operating here in the city. So #1, listen to healthcare workers, those people want to be part of the solutions."

From listening to people talk about the economy, Young says that the provincial government should listen when people say they're in a worse-off state than a few years ago.

She also heard some talk about the Downtown Revitalization Project here in Estevan and thinks the project can do some good so long as it's done carefully.

"I think people love their communities. People love their downtowns and our main streets are a part of that, and investing in things like public works, infrastructure, or in expanding commercial and public spaces for people to walk and spend money and support their local businesses, I think these are good common sense things to do and an important part of building the future of a community."

"That said, we all know everything is more expensive than it was. Any building project today is going to be 30% more expensive than it was just a few years ago. So of course people are going to have questions for their elected officials about how public money is being spent, if it is being spent properly. But revitalizing a Main Street while accounting for public dollars and being transparent about how that is spent, I think is a good investment in the future of Estevan." 

She says that people in the southeast can expect to see her in their communities now and then and would love to visit with people.

"Call me. Invite me for coffee. I'll show up at your door or at the farm gate or visit your small business. But it's my buddy area of the province that I try and get to a few times a year. Last time I was here, I was nine months pregnant. So it's going to be a little bit easier for me to get around than it was in the past couple of months."