Mayoral candidate Rick Shone is hoping to bring a new voice and a new vision to Winnipeg's future if elected.
"It wasn't an easy decision and I started thinking about it back in 2018," says Shone, one of the mayoral candidates. "I thought, we could use some people to come to the table and present some really solid ideas and to challenge some people who've been in politics and our leadership."
Shone says it took him some time to make the decision to run for Mayor of Winnipeg, as he didn't want to make a decision like this lightly, but rather he knew he wanted to fully commit.
"Over the past four years, I felt like Winnipeg went backward a little bit. Too many times in the national media we're seen here for all the wrong things. I'm a business owner and a passionate Winnipegger who is proud of our city and I think we can live in a world-class city."
Homelessness in Winnipeg
Shone shares the most pressing issue in the city is people experiencing homelessness, and that's because it involves people.
"About five years ago I made the decision to move my business downtown. Through that, I became much more aware of those issues in our city."
Shone has volunteered with Main Street Project and sat on the board of the Central Neighbourhoods Association.
"Early on in the campaign I brought a suggestion forward and a pledge to build a supervised consumption site. For many people addicted to drugs, they need a safe place for this moment."
Shone says shelters should be considered emergency spaces only.
"We don't need one type of solution. We need multiple different types of housing; palliative care, supported care for people with mental health, beds for recovery of addictions. We also need transitional housing in the moment."
Rising Crime Rates
Shone believes police spend a lot of time attending to matters that could be handled in another department.
"We need to expand programs like Active Response to Citizens in Crisis where a plainclothes police officer partners up with a social worker and can do wellness checks. I also think we can expand the mobile crisis unit."
He says that for these programs to be successful and expand, the provincial government would have to come alongside in support.
"We need to continue funding the good work of groups like the Bear Clan. When I was working with the Central Neighbourhoods Association, we funded a number of neighbourhood watch organizations and I think they're very important. The downtown community safety patrol here is an important group."
Groups like this can take some of the weight off of the Winnipeg Police in not needing to respond to calls like this, according to Shone.
Connecting with Provincial and Federal Governments
"In Winnipeg, we represent the bulk of the population of Manitoba. We are a very important population to Manitoba and to the success of our province as a whole. So we need to have a very close relationship with the provincial government."
Shone says that over the past eight years it's been a closed-door relationship between municipal and federal jurisdiction.
"If you disagree on some issues, that's fine. But we cannot afford for people to not work together. We have to come back to the table all the time to make sure we are working together for the benefit of Winnipeggers."
Shone shares that Winnipeg roads have been the 'money pit' of the city.
"We need to focus on fixing the roads that we have. In the short term, it might mean holding off on some of the big projects that are already in the capital budget, like Chief Peguis Trail."
The more roads Winnipeg has, the more costly it is in the city's budget, says Shone.
"One of the reasons I ran for mayor is because I realized the city was in an extremely tight financial situation. We almost have no room to move."
His experience as a business owner means Shone deals with finances on a daily basis.
"My first job is to open up the books and see, where is the money going? We've been doing things the same way forever. It's not working and we need to change that."
For more information on Rick Shone's platform, click here.