Today marks the start of Hanukkah, the eight-day Jewish celebration of light and freedom.
This Festival of Lights is marked with many rich customs, such as the lighting of an additional candle on the menorah each day, symbolizing the growing faith and hope of the Jewish community. I wish all Jewish Albertans a very happy and blessed Hanukkah, and I hope you will all have the opportunity to enjoy your traditions with family and friends.
Today we mark Holomodor Memorial Day, a day of remembrance of the millions of Ukrainians who suffered and died as a result of famine and genocide between 1932 and 1933. The Government of Alberta passed the Ukrainian Famine and Genocide (Holodomor) Memorial Day Act in 2008 so that the horrific actions of a cruel regime will never be forgotten or repeated, and to acknowledge how fortunate we are to count Holodomor survivors and their descendants as part of a vibrant and resilient community of Ukrainian-Albertans. We are truly fortunate to live in a society that values the rule of law, democratic freedoms and human rights.
It was a great honour to be sworn in as a member of Albertaâ€™s Legislative Assembly on Monday, November 17th, along with my trusted colleagues Gordon Dirks, the Minister of Education, Stephen Mandel, the Minister of Health, and Mike Ellis, the new MLA for Calgary West. With the first week of session completed, our government is looking forward to the work there is to be done. We will continue to maintain focus on our commitment to sound fiscal principles, ending entitlements and restoring public trust, maximizing the value of our natural resources, establishing our province as an environmental leader, respecting property rights and enhancing Albertansâ€™ quality of life.