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A Conversation with Sarah Hamilton

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Sarah Hamilton is the  City of Edmonton sipiwiyiniwak Ward Councillor.

She joined Tee to discuss municipal politics.

Currently serving her second term on the Edmonton City Council, Sarah Hamilton represents Ward sipiwiyiniwak. She also holds positions as the City of Edmonton representative on the Federation of Canadian Municipalities Board of Directors. She is one of the Council-appointed Commissioners on the Edmonton Police Commission, where she serves on the Executive Committee. Growing up in Edmonton, Sarah has been deeply involved in the community.

Following the recent shooting incident at City Hall, necessary support was provided before resuming normal operations. A security audit will be conducted, and Sarah believes this evaluation will be based on previous recommendations to ensure safety. Reopening to the public and addressing security issues are priorities. Sarah has expressed that she feels safe.

As one of two women councillors in local government, Sarah has learned valuable lessons. She acknowledges that being in the public eye brings different expectations, which can sometimes feel overwhelming. However, she emphasizes the importance of feeling comfortable with decisions and being open to the diverse perspectives of the people she represents. This openness, she believes, enhances her effectiveness in her role.

The council’s funding and services plan is ongoing, with a focus on ensuring finances are allocated for core services like snow removal. Sarah is also passionate about the Big Island Provincial Park, which she views as a valuable asset for both Edmonton and Alberta. This council has prioritized climate, infrastructure, anti-racism, and reconciliation, continuing the focus of previous councils.

Edmontonians will soon hear more about the City Plan, which includes development, structure, and a zoning bylaw renewal that allows for commercial and residential neighbourhoods. Sarah believes anti-racism is a societal issue and stresses the importance of consulting and advising others to serve the community better. She notes that the conversation around anti-racism has evolved over the past six years, with changes in approach based on past council decisions, including representation and diversity perspectives.

Housing remains a complex issue, driven by growth and market demands. There is a need for more housing, including multifamily and intergenerational solutions. The “hard to house” population also requires additional support. Edmonton’s post-secondary institutions, job market growth, and affordable cost of living make it a promising city for the future. However, increased costs, interest rates, and labor shortages pose challenges. Understanding the market and leveraging affordable housing grants are crucial for local councillors. Sarah believes investing in Edmonton benefits the entire country.

“My son gives me hope for the future,” Sarah shares. She takes care of her health through reading both fiction and non-fiction, enjoying music, exercising, and spending time outdoors, all while continuing her dedicated work as a councillor.










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