Local Journalism Initiative Reporter
This election is the second time Estelle Hjertaas has tried to unseat the Conservatives in the riding of Prince Albert.
And, as the daughter of scientists, Hjertaas has one large priority if she finds herself in the House of Commons after September 20 – climate change.
“Climate is a very important issue for me,” she said. “A lot of people seem to be recognizing that climate change is happening.”
She thinks the extreme weather and forest fires in Canada this year may have given voters an extra reason to check Liberal on the ballot.
Hjertaas is employed as a legal aid lawyer, which gives her a unique perspective, she said.
“What I do every day is stand up for people. I have a lot of experience dealing with sensitive situations,” she added.
Along with her regular work load, Hjertaas volunteers in multiple areas, ranging from child hood literacy projects to the library board, the YWCA board and advocating for the French Canadian Society of Prince Albert. She also gives time doing pro bono law.
Caring about others is why she is interested in politics.
“I believe that politics is ultimately about helping people,” she said. “People have a duty to give back as much as they can.”
Representing marginalized people in court has taught her that people need an advocate, whether in the criminal justice system or in the halls of the Parliament that makes the laws.
“People in those situations aren’t able to represent themselves,” Hjertaas said. That is when she steps in.
She chose the Liberal Party because of similar values.
“The Liberal Party is the right party because their focus is people and communities,” Hjertaas said. “That’s what I care about as well.”
In addition to working and volunteering, Hjertaas is a new mom and a “very outdoorsy person.”
She enjoys hunting, camping and being outdoors.