Cancer Can’t Wait Lands in Saskatchewan

The Canadian Cancer Survivor Network has brought our All-Party Cancer Caucus to Saskatchewan!

We hosted the meeting in the province’s legislative building in Regina on April 3rd. In our meeting, we shared stories, viewed data, and heard arguments on the future of cancer care in Saskatchewan.

CCSN staff were on hand, including our Public Policy Coordinator, Connor Mulders, our Community Engagement Manager, Lindsay Timm, as well as our CCSN colleague David Klug. We were joined by members of the cancer patient community, along with members of the oncology and medical community.

Among those joining us were Candace Skrapek, a lung cancer patient advocate from Saskatoon who presented remotely, as well as Dr. Mohammed I. Khan and Dr. M. Habib Khan, both from the Allan Blair Cancer Centre in Regina and associate professors of medicine at the University of Saskatchewan. We were also joined by advocates from Dense Breasts Canada, a partner organization of CCSN, who were led by Jennie Dale, co-founder of DBC who also chose to present remotely. DBC was in turn joined by Marj Olson and members of her family, who presented the caregiver perspective of cancer care in memory of the late Sharon Olson.

We are pleased to report that we were joined by members of both major parties currently representing the people of Saskatchewan. We welcomed several members of the cabinet of the ruling Saskatchewan Party, including the Minister of Health, the Honourable Paul Merriman. We were also joined by the Honourable Laura Ross, Minister for Women, and the Minister of Crown Corporations, the Honourable Don Morgan.

Other Saskatchewan Party caucus members at the Caucus included MLA Greg Ottenbreit – Yorktown, who shared his sympathy with us due to his struggles with cancer, including the death of his son from the disease.

On the other side of the aisle, we welcomed MLA Carla Beck – Regina Lakeview, and MLA Vicki Mowat – Saskatoon Fairview, from the Saskatchewan NDP. We appreciate both their insight and continued support of our work.

CCSN also met face-to-face with the Honourable Jeremy Cockrill, Minister of Water and Highways,. Minister Cockrill was an early supporter of our efforts to host an All-Party Cancer Caucus in Saskatchewan, but was unable to attend our caucus meeting the previous day due to prior commitments. We gave Minister Cockrill an abbreviated presentation on the topic of lung cancer screening in the provinceas well as a short recording of the presentation by Candace Skrapek. The minister raised several pertinent questions, especially in regard to the carcinogenic properties of radon gas, and the issues with the inefficient current pipeline of cancer care that was tackled by Dr. M. I. Khan. CCSN expressed our thanks for the minister’s help in organizing the Caucus meeting, and that we looked forward to working with him and his office in the future.

The full list of those who attended the All-Party Cancer Caucus

Hon. Lori Carr – Minister of SaskBuilds and Procurement, Minister Responsible for the Public Service Commission and for Saskatchewan Liquor and Gaming
Hon. Everett Hindley – Minister of Mental Health and Addictions, Seniors, and Rural and Remote Health
Hon. Gene Makowsky – Minister of Social Services
Hon. Paul Merriman – Minister of Health
Hon. Don Morgan – Minister of Crown Investments Corporation and Minister responsible for the Saskatchewan Gaming Corporation, SaskEnergy, SGI, SaskPower, SaskTel, SaskWater, Labour Relations and Workplace Safety, and the Workers’ Compensation Board.
Hon. Laura Ross – Minister of Parks, Culture and Sport, responsible for the Status of Women Office and Francophone Affairs
Hon. Dana. Skoropad – Minister of Environment
Hon. Gord Wyant – Minister of Advanced Education

Carla Beck – Party Leader for Saskatchewan NDP – Regina Lakeview
Steven Bonk – Saskatchewan Party (SKP) – Moosomin
Fred Bradshaw – SKP – Carrot River Valley
David Buckingham – SKP – Saskatoon Westview
Ken Cheveldayoff – SKP – Saskatoon Willowgrove
Ryan Domotor – SKP – Cut Knife-Turtleford
Marv Friesen – SKP – Saskatoon Riversdale
Todd Goudy – SKP – Melfort
Daryl Harrison – SKP – Cannington
Warren Kaeding – SKP – Melville-Saltcoats
Travis Keisig – Last Mountain-Touchwood
Lisa Lambert – SKP – Saskatoon Churchill-Wildwood
Jim Lemaigre – SKP – Athabasca
Vicki Mowat – NDP – Saskatoon Fairview
Greg Ottenbreit – SKP – Yorkton
Alana Ross – SKP – Prince Albert Northcote
Doyle Vermette -NDP  – Cumberland