Conference in Red Deer to discuss national unity vs. separation

Meeting the challenge of national unity is the focus of discussion during a two-day event in Red Deer this weekend.

The 7th annual Essentials of Freedom Conference will be held at the Cambridge Red Deer Hotel and Conference Centre on Friday and Saturday (Nov. 15-16)

Danny Hozack, chair of the Economic Education Association, says the event aims to facilitate an intelligent discussion about policy matters important to voters in Alberta and across Canada.

“Our belief is that sound policy should be based on sound economics and sound science,” explains Hozack.

“We’ve been trying to hold conferences where we talk about the sound science, the sound economics that lead to good public policy formation. We had one on meeting the climate change challenge, one on meeting the challenges of debt and deficit, and of course this one – we’re talking about meeting the challenges of western separation or meeting the unity challenge depending on what side of the fence you’re looking at it from.”

Hozack says there will be three groups of speakers at their Red Deer event.

“We have one group that are making the case for separation. They’re saying why they think Albertans would be better off if they had a separate country.

“There are going to be some people defending federalism, saying not that any of us don’t love the country, but they’re going to be saying we love the country, we realize it needs to be fixed, and these are the things we can do to fix it.”

Hozack says the third group will talk about universal challenges and forging a strong relationship with our neighbours.

“Meaning America, First Nations, the other provinces,” adds Hozack. “Whether you’re one country or whether you’re two, you have to get along with America, you have to get along with the First Nations, you have to get along with your neighbours. We’re going to have a broad group of people with a lot of different perspectives, and we’re hoping to talk about it with both sides in the room.”

One speaker of note that Hozack points out is Patrick Moore – an original founder of Greenpeace.

“His message is that a few focused people can literally change the course of history,” Hozack explains. “And I think that’s our message to the 300 and some people that are going to be there. By being involved, by being active, by calmly going out and taking your views to your neighbours, you literally can change the course of history and so that’s what we’re hoping to do, is we’re hoping to make a positive impact on our province and our country’s future.”

For more information or to register, visit