Moose Jaw lawyer Talon Regent was recently re-elected as the president of the Saskatchewan Council of Electoral District Associations (CEDA).

The Federal NDP’s Saskatchewan Council of Electoral District Associations (CEDA) acts as a bridge between the NDP head office in Ottawa and the 14 EDA's in Saskatchewan.

"Being re-elected was quite the honour," said Regent. "It's the highest level of organization in the federal NDP within Saskatchewan. Being able to effectively represent Saskatchewanians in the NDP as it relates to what's going on in Ottawa is very important to me. For a long time in my life, I was told that people in Saskatchewan are looked over and ignored when it comes to federal politics. Being in a role where I have a direct impact in influencing what's going on in Ottawa is very meaningful to me."

As his first act after being re-elected, Regent traveled to Ottawa for a meeting with NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh. The two met shortly after Question Period on November 23rd.

"It's very important to me that Saskatchewanian voices are heard in Ottawa and it was my thought that I needed to go there and see these individuals in person to help effect change," noted Regent.

He says the top issues facing Saskatchewanians include rising inflation, the erosion of quality health care, and a sense of under-representation in Ottawa.

"One of the topics that was discussed was a feeling of Prairie alienation where our voices aren't being heard in Ottawa. So we talked about messaging and we talked about how we need to reinforce that we are listening to Saskatchewanians. I know that Jagmeet Singh has been talking to families in Alberta, families in Swift Current, people in Moose Jaw and it just needs to be demonstrated to the public that those conversations are happening...Right now the Liberals are in government, the Conservatives are in opposition. The Conservatives hold all 14 seats in Saskatchewan and yet the Conservative MP's for Saskatchewan are not putting forward solutions to the issue. So that's why I went to Ottawa to have a discussion with Jagmeet Singh about putting forward genuine solutions."

Regent says a prime example of this is the NDP's refusal to back the Liberals' Bill C-21.

"The Liberals' initial Bill C-21, it was trying to restrict some reasonable handguns, assault-style rifles. Things that were designed more for violence than for sport or hunting or other practical solutions. These new amendments to Bill C-21 are not that. The new amendments go well beyond what law enforcement has recommended and they start to impede upon Indigenous treaty rights. They start to impede on farmers' ability to protect their crops and their cattle, and it is well beyond what a reasonable Canadian would support. The New Democrats saw this change and said, 'we can't support the Liberals in this, but we're prepared to co-operate with the Conservatives to get this quashed'."

Regent commented further on how the NDP holds the balance of power within Parliament with only 25 seats. 

"While none of those 25 seats are in Saskatchewan itself, New Democrats pride ourselves on representing not just individual special interests, but every single Canadian in the country. When the Conservatives and the Liberals simply refuse to cooperate with one another, it means that Conservative MP's in Saskatchewan are unable to affect change or influence policy in any way, shape or form. They can yell and they can yell loudly, but they're not going to influence the decisions in Parliament, so the NDP, as a party, willing to cooperate with the Conservatives, willing to cooperate with the Liberals, we can get stuff done."

Talon Regent was the NDP candidate in the 2019 and 2021 federal elections in Moose Jaw - Lake Centre - Lanigan. He was re-elected as president of the Saskatchewan CEDA on November 4th, 2022 and has been on the executive of the organization since 2017.