Senator speaks at Morinville Rotary

by Lucie Roy

Senator Grant Mitchell spoke to those in attendance at the Rotary Club of Morinville Breakfast meeting held Wednesday morning at the Morinville Community Cultural Centre.

One topic covered was how you can apply for an appointment to the Senate at any time through an open application process.

The Senate Appointment opportunities are online along with the application form, assessment criteria and how well you meet each of the criteria and requirements.

Senator Mitchell said if you are over 30 and under 75 years of age and if you apply to the Senate and the Prime Minister calls you, say yes.

“It is a wonderful place to be. Meet wonderful people and it has made a difference in this country.”

Mitchell said the term used to be for life then that changed in 1965 to 75 years of age and the average length of time served is 11 years and for members of the House of Commons it is 6 years.

Mitchell said the advantage for longer terms, which is one of the complimentary differences that the Senate has with the House of Commons, is that they can take on issues that take a lot longer to develop.

They can take on issues that because they are not elected and that maybe if an election were to be called in 6 or 8 months and cannot identify with a Constituency would not be selected to take on.

Mental Health is one of those. The Senate has studied this and important changes have been driven by the Senate that does not have to worry about being elected.

The same applies to issues on literary.

The topics of conversation covered the history of the Senate, changes, accountability, representation Canada wide, term served and a Question and Answer session on the Senate and current affairs issues across Canada.

Mitchell said the next time they are in Senate it will be at a different location and will be televised.

Grant Mitchell represents Alberta as an Independent Senator and was called to the Senate in 2005.

As a note, two previous Senators from this area include Senator Cote and Thelma Chalifoux.