Raised in politics

Derek Montague
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Lori Dyson, seeking Liberal nomination, wants more resource benefits for Labrador

During a recent flight between Happy Valley-Goose Bay and the island portion of the province, Lori Dyson met a young man from Manitoba. After striking up a conversation, Dyson asked him why he was flying into Labrador. The man replied that he was working at the Muskrat Falls project.

Lori Dyson, born and raised in Happy Valley-Goose Bay, will be seeking the Liberal nomination for the Lake Melville District. Dyson has been surrounded by politics all of her life and says she wants to ensure Labradorians get maximum benefits from their own resources.

Dyson then inquired what kind of job the man held, thinking he must be somebody highly specialized since he was flying in from all the way out west. His answer took Dyson by surprise.

“He said, ‘oh, just a labour job … my buddy got me a job,’” recalled Dyson.

“And that really bothered me, knowing that there are so many qualified people in the area, not to mention labourers … who are getting overlooked.”

Dyson is one of four candidates who are seeking the Liberal nomination for the Lake Melville district, along with Brandon Pardy, Waylon Williams and Perry Trimper. For whoever wins the nomination, Muskrat Falls will be a hot-button issue.

“I kind of make no bones about the fact that … I wasn’t a supporter of the Muskrat Falls project. That comes with what happened with the Upper Churchill development,” said Dyson.

“That being said, the Muskrat Falls project is here and I think that the people who should be benefitting from the project are Labradorians, first and foremost and, in a lot of cases, that’s not happening.”

Dyson believes that Labradorians, in general, don’t receive enough benefits from resource development in the Big Land.

“There’re a lot of resources leaving Labrador and I think it’s time that Labradorians are the first ones to benefit from them.”

Dyson points to the annual Labrador Expo as an example of Labrador’s resource exploitation. She notes that, at the tradeshow, so many business representatives come from outside of Labrador.

“You run into so many different business opportunities and different companies that are coming in, because of what’s happening in Labrador,” said Dyson.

“But it was sad on a certain scale to see very few local representation within the Expo. So you look around and you see all of these other businesses that are profiting off of businesses that we own.”

Dyson has been surrounded by political people all of her life. Her father, Gerald Dyson, had a reputation of being one of the most vocal “armchair politicians” in Happy Valley-Goose Bay.

“I grew up in a household that was political … I remember being a kid and, we sat down and we had to watch the news with our mom and dad, well mostly our dad,” said Dyson.

“Dad always said ‘you owe it to the world to know what’s going on around you.’ So that kind of rubbed off from my father for sure.”

Later on in life, she would marry Randy Edmunds, who would be elected Torngat Mountains MHA in 2011.

Dyson had been involved with volunteer work and non-profit organizations much of her life. While living in Makkovik, she even sat on the community’s town council. But after her husband’s election victory, Dyson realized she wanted to get involved with provincial politics.

“It’s something I seriously thought about since Randy got elected,” said Dyson. “Just by seeing the work that he does, and how he loves his job.”

Even though she is married to a provincial MHA, Dyson isn’t worried about living in her husband’s political shadow.

“I think people will probably associate me with being Gerald Dyson’s daughter long before Randy Edmund’s wife,” said Dyson.

“My dad was probably the biggest armchair politician in all of Labrador. He was very passionate about the environment … there wasn’t a community meeting that happened anywhere that didn’t either attend or know what was going on.”

Despite being a part of a mainstream political party, Dyson claims to have an individualistic approach to voting.

“I don’t really consider myself a party person. When it comes to voting, I try to vote for the person whose views are the same as mine,” said Dyson.

In fact, during the 2007 provincial election, Dyson supported PC candidate Patty Pottle.

“We were big supporters of Patty Pottle,” said Dyson. “And it wasn’t supporting the PC Party … we supported everything that she was doing to get elected.”

derek.montague@thelabradorian.ca

Organizations: PC Party

Geographic location: Labrador, Lake Melville, Happy Valley Goose Bay Makkovik

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Recent comments

  • White and Leftout
    July 26, 2014 - 18:39

    Lot of racist Labradorians it seems. By benifit Labradorians do you mean all of us or just the three groups of "choisen ones" St Johns is part of Labrador just as much as Goose Bay is part of the Coast. Smallwood was a good Liberal and he gave away Churchill Falls and tried to give Quebec Labrador. Nice to see you supoort that party. After years of being a Liberal area Labrador is still wanting ,guess some never learn.

  • White and Leftout
    July 26, 2014 - 18:37

    Lot of racist Labradorians it seems. By benifit Labradorians do you mean all of us or just the three groups of "choisen ones" St Johns is part of Labrador just as much as Goose Bay is part of the Coast. Smallwood was a good Liberal and he gave away Churchill Falls and tried to give Quebec Labrador. Nice to see you supoort that party. After years of being a Liberal area Labrador is still wanting ,guess some never learn.

  • F Smithen
    July 25, 2014 - 16:28

    Trying to score points because someone leaves his home to better himself scores no points with me....no vote from me then! Perhaps you might do better to round-up some of those layabouts waiting at the postal station for.....'me cheque' and make 'em go to work.

  • Charles Murphy
    July 24, 2014 - 17:36

    Only one question, should be ask of any of the candidates. Where do you see the economy in four years time?

  • labrador rosie
    July 23, 2014 - 08:48

    #1 - if you truly don't agree with Muskrat Falls, you wouldn't want anyone to benefit from it. I know people who would never dream of working "across the river" because they simply don't support the project. #2 - Raised in Politics? - you watched the news growing up and your father was an armchair politician....hmmm... #3 - what education and other knowledge about politics, besides what you learned married to an MHA and by sitting on a very small town council? Side note, does the Labradorian require an editor? Just wondering, the typos, misspelling, and grammatical errors are very plentiful....

    • norfolks
      July 23, 2014 - 15:45

      maybe they are not qualified for the job or maybe a lot of labradorians do not want to work across the river they say its their land and they do not want to mess it up . pride I guess .and I met a guy from st.johns and they have to say that they are from Labrador .when they are hired .

    • anon
      July 23, 2014 - 16:40

      Your grammatical errors are very plentiful there as well. What benefit do you get from putting someone else down? It's pretty ridiculous that you have to go and post on the Labradorian rather than address her yourself.

  • Carl
    July 23, 2014 - 03:30

    i have met alot of people and seen alot of people that are not from here working at muskratfalls i met a guy from new york