Maria Rose Lewans is running as an independent in the 2021 federal election for the Cypress Hills – Grasslands riding.
Lewans also ran in the last election and has had her name stand in many different political races in recent years at all three levels of government.
Lewans says she is running again because she is fed up with how the country is being operated.
“When I feel like I have no options to vote for, I just can't sit there and complain, I have to do something,” said Lewans.
Lewans explained that she hates politics and won’t tailor her message for anyone. She will leave it up to the people to see if she gets elected.
If Lewans does get elected she would like to change the monetary system, focus on the environment and watershed, create local perennial food systems and ban the importing of technology to Canada to reduce waste and pollution.
“When COVID shut down everything the world didn’t end, maybe we can stop producing stuff, stop these factories and just say ‘what do we need,’ the world's not going to end if we stop production," she stated. "We need to prepare for winter, we need to prepare for impending droughts.”
“We should do more perennial food systems because we can't be spreading all this fertilizer like our soil is on life support, we can't be spreading all these chemicals and fertilizers everywhere and using the fuel system," she added.
Lewans also believes that Canada should have some type of mandatory military service, where everyone is taught disciplines like Tai Chi.
“The world is crazy, it is what it is, we know there's lunatics out there," she said. "And instead of a society of basically weak, useless people, we train ourselves, we have skills, so that if we need them - hopefully we will never need them - we know how to use them.”
Lewans says the journey of an independent candidate is much more difficult than the challenges faced by candidates of established parties.
For one, an independent candidate does not have a brand or money to back them in their campaign.
“I don't have a party or money behind me," Lewans said. "And I like working - the world doesn't stop turning because there's an election.”
Lewans created her own signs which have been posted at various locations. She said she created the signs to make people aware that there are other options in this election, particularly for those who have stopped paying attention to elections and don't like any of the other party choices.
“I thought if I put up some signs at least people might think, ‘oh, there's somebody else running, maybe I'll at least look into what this person has to say and pay attention’," she explained. "I mean, that's all I can do, because I can't stop my life to just campaign.”
Lewans hand-painted all her signs and put them out herself and does have a few more ideas she hopes to unveil before the campaign is over.
Lewans is a Swift Current local and grew up on a farm near Shaunavon. She currently works in construction.
Lewans is the last candidate in the Cypress Hills-Grasslands to profiled by The Standard. Four candidates were profiled last week but The Standard was unable to reach Liberal candidate Mackenzie Hird and Green Party candidate Carol Vandale.
There are seven candidates running in the Cypress Hills-Grasslands riding. They include Mackenzie Hird, Liberal Party; Charles Hislop, People’s Party; Maria Rose Lewans, Independent; Alex McPhee, New Democratic Party; Jeremy Patzer (incumbent), Conservative Party; Mark Skagen, Maverick Party; Carol Vandale, Green Party.
Election day is set for Sept. 20.
Jacob Miller, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Shaunavon Standard