Online petition latest tool for N.S. MLA pushing for February holiday

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Liberal MLA Diana Whalen.


As residents head to work this morning, millions of other Canadians are relaxing with family enjoying the day off.

The third Monday in February is a statutory holiday for Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario, Saskatchewan and Prince Edward Island, and a Liberal MLA has created a petition for Nova Scotia to join their ranks. British Columbia also has a February holiday, but has it on the second Monday of the month.

“We only have so many tools that you can use to influence government or to call on them, and having a petition is one of (those),” said Diana Whalen, who represents the riding for Halifax-Clayton Park.

Whalen first introduced legislation for a February holiday to match Family Day in 2005, but the last three premiers have not supported it.

“You run out of things to do,” Whalen said Sunday. “I’ve written letters, I’ve called on various people to support it, and … we’re really hitting a brick wall.”

Although Whalen’s online petition won’t be formally introduced to the legislature, she said she can reference it as a measure of public opinion and call attention to it.

She said the petition was posted the middle of last week and has 452 signatures as of Sunday evening.

“It becomes a health and wellness issue. Winter is long, and people get run down at this time of year,” Whalen said about the need for a holiday.

The petition can be found here:

Geographic location: Nova Scotia, Pictou County, Alberta Manitoba Ontario Saskatchewan Prince Edward Island British Columbia Halifax-Clayton Park

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Recent comments

  • Charlie Joseph
    February 19, 2013 - 11:16

    This is why I have 7 contractors working for me here in Amherst. I refuse to hire employees. You work according to the contract you sign with me, and you are paid quite well, You decide not to fulfill your contract, you get squat. I structured my internet startup this way because of politicians adding layer after layer of regulations on employers and insane deductions and socialist government insurance schemes. Friends need accountants, I need none, because I can do my filings quickly with no pesky employee regulations wasting my time and valuable capital.

  • Serioulsy
    February 19, 2013 - 06:05

    People can say what they will and Employers aren't necessarily going to pay for this holiday. I think it makes Nova Scotia look even worse in the eyes of our nation as every other province grants this Family Day but NS government doesn't. We already have the worst province for our economy, jobs or lack there of, taxes and the many other things we can add to the list so. It only seems fitting that our government is the one that will NOT grant this holiday to break up the monotony of the new year until Easter when there is another holiday. As for small business owners.....It isn't like you already pay all holidays so why would you pay this one? Perhaps an increase in morale might make it look a bit more promising.

  • BP
    February 18, 2013 - 16:52

    It is fairly obvious from the many, many comments that Mr.Smoke writes that he is a Conservative supporter, not that there is anything wrong with that. In one of his comments today, he gets a dig in at the NDP, and in the other he gets a shot in at the Liberals. Now, I have no ties to any one party, I think it's best not to be blinded by loyalty. But I digress. If he wishes,a little research will show of the top 24 senators with travel expenses, 12 are Conservative and 12 are Liberal. Of the top 24 claimants of living expense, 16 are Conservative and 8 are Liberal. It's not as if any one party has a leg up on feeding at the trough. By the way, I do believe that Nova Scotia should have a holiday in February. We have the least amount of holidays in the country now and one more holiday isn't going to put anyone out of business, regardless of what they would like you to believe.

  • Me
    February 18, 2013 - 13:13

    Online petitions are rarely effective anyways; just about anyone can sign with any names, multiple times even. Armchair activism.

  • dawn selkirk
    February 18, 2013 - 12:40

    please bring in the holiday. not everyone can afford to go down south. it's miserable & tiring.

  • Tammy MacLaren
    February 18, 2013 - 11:53

    There are no words....well yes there are! Really, really? Creating a petition to get a day off in February? INSULIN PUMPS FOR KIDS, now that is worthy of a petition. If you go to the website, the petitions are dealing with true injustices in the world. Rape, animal cruelty, insulin pump coverage. Is there nothing more important that an MLA can be doing? I would expect a school age child to create something like this not an elected official. Prioritize important issues and this is not one of them. Tammy MacLaren creator of a real petiton, to have NS Fund Insulin Pumps for Children.

    • Stewie Griffin
      February 18, 2013 - 17:16

      What the deuce ? Your rant makes me never to want sign anything you bring forward.. has been used to try and change just everything and its for ANYONE to use you self righteous nut. Grow up.

    • Evil Monkey
      February 19, 2013 - 07:33

      Tammy if you even took the time to browser instead of going off the handle because there is a petition for a holiday, you would quickly see numerous petitions that one could call frivolous.. Here an example, this one is for a computer game, Gonna go yell at them too? Oh and this one has more signatures then your petition You see the point i'm making here right? Everyone has the right to speak up and ask for changes be it through petition or other method and they do not deserve a verbal beat down because of it. That just showing immaturity, you want people to back you, well rants like this are not going to help your case any. If anything it will hurt it. Bravo..

  • L MacDonald
    February 18, 2013 - 10:51

    February holiday? Nova Scotia is one of the very few provinces that doesn't have a holiday on the first Monday of August. Oh yes, I forgot, government employees and the City of Halifax gets it so no one else needs it.

  • ellen cameron
    February 18, 2013 - 10:48

    dear jason, please stay where you are, we don,t need more of you negatives out here in Alberta! I am from N.S. and I can assure you the people out here are not lazy. And, yes, this holiday is a nice break for a lot of busy people.

  • Mr. Chow
    February 18, 2013 - 10:30

    We'll when I go to and look up "Nova Scotia February holiday" nothing works.

  • Need a break
    February 18, 2013 - 10:22

    I for one, traveling across the causeway this morning in this nasty weather would love to have been home nice and cozy and relieived not to have to venture out. We have 5 stat holidays in NS, the lowest in Canada. The workforce is not made up soley of government workers and teachers and I knew with my chosen profession that I would not have summer and storm days like the teachers so how can I complain about them? A one day in break in February would do wonders to refresh the average worker including myself, just saying...

  • just thinking
    February 18, 2013 - 10:00

    well i hope it will b a unpaid holiday.small buisness is struggling as it is .alot of nova scotians r allready on long hollidays because tey cant find a job.instead of looking for another mall day.

  • Jason
    February 18, 2013 - 09:33

    Yep, we need to work more not those lazy albertans with their extra day off....come to think of it...maybe I'll move out of this province and go to one of those that provides more family time. Hope this helps NS economy. LOL

    • Marsha
      February 19, 2013 - 07:16

      Jason you need to go to Alberta to work. LAZY !!!! My husband is a rig manager and works 24/7 For 21 days straight !! And for your info he did NOT have family day because his family is here.

  • Johnny smoke
    February 18, 2013 - 09:08

    Just what this woefully indebted province needs, another holiday. Just think of more than 100 thousand public servants either lounging around home, or getting paid double or even triple time for showing up.If there ever was a money wasting idea this is it, by a money wasting party I might add. As it is now we only work on average 240 days out of a 365 day year, unless you are a teacher of course then that is shrunk even further to 190 days. I guess the next goofy idea will be let's add a few more working days to the calendar in an attempt to pull this debt ridden province out of the fiscal hole, anyone in favor of that?

  • Dave George
    February 18, 2013 - 08:57

    February Holiday??? Really??? The shortest month of the year and now a holiday too. As a business owner, this will cost me even more money. Just another Liberal not seeing the big picture.

    • johnny smoke
      February 18, 2013 - 12:06

      Fear not Dave- as you can see this a an idea thought up by public servants for public servants. No worry there about meeting a payroll is there? I suppose that if Nova Scotia agrees then we will also have all of our senators traveling home from Ottawa, racking up more air miles and hotel bills. Seeing that the Liberal senators hold the lead for the highest travel bills I can see why it is being proposed by the same party, go figure.