Bill 6

Photo by Natalie Jackman,

Our unabashedly, proud agriculture family. Complete with pony and buffalo. Photo by Natalie Jackman,



Dear Premier Notley,

I find it gut wrenching to receive the following email (please see below). As the owner of an equine training breeding and boarding facility, Bill 6 will directly affect my family. I tried to register to attend the information session being held in my area on December 2, 2015 but sadly all the seats are full. The following email from the Ministry of Jobs, Skills, Training and Labour suggests that I should attend the next closest meeting in ATHABASCA.
Are you seriously suggesting that I pack up my children, leave our animals, our farm, our businesses and drive 489 kms (4 HOURS + 41 MINS) to have a chance at an information session?

Please understand, a horse training business is somewhat dangerous in nature and therefore, we already do carry WCB coverage for our business. We have done so for the last +10 years. My husband, a professional horse trainer, is a great man and works very hard to support us. We truly understand the consequences of having him injured, sidelined or worse. But please know that we have struggled to pay the WCB premiums at times – so I’d like to know – will there be any government financial assistance when it comes to requiring farmers and ranchers to carry WCB? What about government financial assistance for helping us deal with the Employment Standards Code and Labour Relations Code?

I have questions. I want to understand.

I can assure you that rarely ever, do horses colic between the hours of 9-5, Monday to Friday. Automatic waterers typically freeze in the middle of the night. And a plethora of other things happen around here at times outside of “business hours” because the animals have their own minds too. We have  to deal with them, regardless of how many hours we have already logged, or what day it is.

We have animals to feed, even on Christmas morning.

Furthermore, our children stay alongside us feeding the animals and assisting around the farm because they truly love it. How and who will determine what a “chore” is vs. “employable work?”
Who will be writing the safety manuals? I implore the government to seek the guidance of knowledgeable individuals in our industry before this legislation is passed. I am sincerely asking for a chance to educate myself before this goes through.

Thank-you for the consideration,
– Jennifer Webster

PS – Thanks for adding me to the “waitlist.”