Mayor, Town of High Prairie
Following is a portion of Town of High Prairie Mayor Linda Cox’s report for March 8-21:
Forestry Day at the Legislature
March 7, Alberta Forest Products hosted a half-day workshop highlighting the industry in northern communities across Alberta.
Negotiations are moving slowly on the Softwood Lumber Agreement which expired last October. West Fraser Forest Products, Canfor, Tolko and Resolute Lumber have been requested to provide information on their exports, as a sample of the complete industry.
The Canadian forestry industry is expecting significant duties on softwood lumber exported to the U.S. to come into effect this year. A comment was made there is a new view on trade by the USA: although they cannot supply their current lumber needs, if Canadian product is kept out, U.S. companies will increase their capacity and produce more eventually.
To offset our dependence on the U.S. market, we can:
* Grow our domestic market. We now have building code approval to build six-storey wood buildings. There is technical expertise to build 18-20 storey building with engineered wood.
* Grow our international markets.
* Growth through innovation – value added engineered wood products.
* Infrastructure investment – building with wood and replacing steel from Korea.
We also had updates on the pine beetle infestation, range management plans for caribou and climate change opportunities that the forest industry is working on.
Wellness Clinic Team meets
March 13, the Community Health and Wellness Partnership Team welcomed a Metis representative, Hazel Vicklund, from Peavine Metis Settlement.
There was discussion on the opioid issue in our region and how we are and will be addressing this. At this time, naloxone kits are being ordered by Public Health and they will be providing training on their use. Further information will be available at our next meeting.
Krystal Smith, coordinator, Self Management and Diverse Population, gave a presentation on chronic disease management. Currently, there are self-management groups in High Prairie but it appears not many know of its availability. It is a 6-week program teaching everyday coping techniques to manage chronic disease, i.e. depression, cardiac, COPD, diabetes, chronic pain, etc. The techniques are not specific to one disease.
Both open and closed programs are available with the closed programming designed for family dynamics, mental health, etc. Applicants would be those with a long-term health issue. Those interested in the program can contact Smith at  830-3526.
We now have an estimated move-in date for the clinic of mid-June 2017. Recruitment to the CHWC will include LPN, social worker, mental health worker, aboriginal liaison, and nurse practitioner positions. The anesthesiologist’s assessment has been completed and details on a start date at the CHWC are being finalized.
For our next meeting, we have asked for a diabetes presentation by Magda duToit to get a doctor’s perspective on diabetes support in our region from the doctor’s perspective. Members of this team continually rank Chronic Disease Management [and kidney disease treatment options’ as our No. 1 health concern.