Settling into his second term in office as the local MP, Tako van Popta received some good news just ahead of Remembrance Day.
On. Nov. 10, he learned he was being appointed to the Conservative’s shadow cabinet.
He will continue to serve as Langley-Aldergrove MP, as well as take on new duties as deputy shadow minister for employment, future workforce development, and disability inclusion.
“I am honoured,” van Popta said of the appointment announced by Conservative leader Erin O’Toole.
This portfolio contains “incredibly important issues” that he said are essential to Canada’s post-pandemic recovery. He pointed to job creation, ensuring the workforce is properly trained and accredited, and modernizing the Employment Insurance system.
“The experiences learned during my 30-plus years in business development, business ownership, and work in the non-profit sector have helped build my understanding of the challenges facing today’s employers and our nation’s diverse workforce,” he shared with The Star.
“Alongside my colleagues, I look forward to moving this portfolio forward for the benefit of all Canadians.”
In his role as deputy, he will be working closely with shadow minister Stephanie Kusie “for the benefit of Canada’s workforce, today and tomorrow.”
Van Popta was first elected to office in 2019, winning the seat long held by the now late Mark Warawa. Warawa had served as MP for the region for 15 year before losing his battle with pancreatic cancer in June 2019.
In addition to his new duties, van Popta is focussed on a number of other local issues such as the SkyTrain expansion to Langley, widening of Highway 1 through Aldergrove and Abbotsford, strengthening the relationship with Kwantlen First Nation and holding the government to account on the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Action.
Other areas that he said hold particular interest in his riding include building partnerships to improve public transportation to Brookswood and Gloucester Estates, and working to bring federal assistance to help address the challenge of Langley’s opioid crisis.
He’s also has a special interest the protection of the Fraser River, namely improving salmon and sturgeon habitat and flood mitigation.
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