Premier's office returns call made to Lou Arab's cell phone

Lou Arab works as a communications officer with CUPE Alberta. A press release urging the Alberta government to move quickly on raising the minimum wage was sent out under his account this week.

Lou Arab works as a communications officer at CUPE Alberta

Conflict of interest?

7 years ago
Duration 1:00
Premier Rachel Notley is asked about her husband's role with CUPE Alberta

Premier Rachel Notley is facing renewed questions about connections between her government and her husband's job with the Canadian Union of Public Employees.

Lou Arab works as a communications officer with the union.

On Friday, CBC News left a message on his mobile phone requesting comment about a press release sent by CUPE earlier this week under his email account.

Notley's press secretary Cheryl Oates returned the call. CBC News has confirmed that the cell phone is not connected to the Alberta NDP or the government of Alberta.

Another spokesman said Arab thought CBC was calling about a potential conflict of interest. Arab thought those questions would be best handled by the premier's office, the spokesman said. 

On Wednesday, a press release urging the Alberta government to move quickly on raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour was sent out under Arab's account.

The press release quotes CUPE Alberta president Marle Roberts and lists her contact information.

Notley was asked about the email at a news conference on Friday. She said Arab didn't write the press release.

"It was one that accidentally went out because of the IT infrastructure where he is," she said.

Notley said she started talking to the ethics commissioner right after the election. She is getting advice on a day by day and issue by issue basis.

Notley said no issues have been raised but Arab is changing roles at CUPE to avoid any possible conflicts.


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