Brian Umpherville wants to bring diversity to the position of trustee in the Saskatchewan Rivers School Division. In the election on Nov. 9 he wants to see indigenous voices around the board table.
“I think there should be a change, it’s not like they are not doing a good job but the majority of them have been there for 20 years already on that school board. They need diversity, I am a young Aboriginal male,” Umpherville said.
“I think it would do a lot personally because you don’t get that voice from the average people on the board as of right now. I’m not saying that they are ignorant and biased. They are just not listening as well as they should be. They do take up concerns but to me not all of the concerns are being met,” he explained.
In addition to Umpherville, fellow candidates Conrad Burns and Heather Carter identify as Indigenous.
Umpherville is an alumnus of the division and has children attending school in it at this time. He has previous board experience as the Indian Metis Friendship Centre Provincial Youth Board and National Youth Board Representative.
Umpherville is actively involved in the community as a volunteer and through sports and cultural activities. He is currently employed as a Harm Reduction Specialist involved with youth.
Umpherville feels that social issues need to dealt with at the board level. One initiative would be creation of a sports league between all of the schools in the division.
“Kids nowadays after they are done school there is nothing really for them to do besides intramural basketball,” Umpherville said.
Sports that he mentioned were hockey, soccer and baseball.
“Keep them active instead of playing out in the streets and going to hang out with gangs. Just keep them busy,” he said.
Umpherville explained that addictions should also be dealt with because they can begin at a very you age.
“It is sad to say but a lot of kids are doing drugs and that’s got to be dealt with,” he said.