EDMONTON – Alberta legislature member Sandra Jansen is urging her colleagues to fight abuse directed toward all politicians.
In a member statement to the house Tuesday, Jansen recounted some of the comments she said have been directed to her since she crossed the floor to the NDP from the Progressive Conservatives last week.
She said she had been labelled "dead meat,'' a "useless tit,'' a "dumb broad'' and told that she should stay in the kitchen.
Jansen said such harassment and abuse thinly hides violent intent and can scare off women seeking to make a contribution in public life.
Sandra Jansen says abuse she endured in the Alberta PC Party influenced her decision to leave. (Photo: Dean Bennett/The Canadian Press)
"Let us be strong and clear in our resolve that no matter where we sit along political lines we stand together against this,'' Jansen told the house.
"In our words and our actions every day from all sides if we don't feed it, we must oppose it.
"Please oppose it. Don't ignore it. Don't look the other way. Don't excuse it. Because our daughters are watching us.''
Jansen was given a standing ovation from politicians on both sides of the aisle.
"In our words and our actions every day from all sides if we don't feed it, we must oppose it."
The Calgary-North West legislature member crossed the floor from the Tories, a party she had been affiliated with for 30 years.
Jansen said the abuse and harassment she endured running on a progressive platform in the Progressive Conservative party leadership race had become intolerable.
She said she fears the PCs are moving to the hard right on social issues and now feels more at home in Premier Rachel Notley's NDP.