Manitoba election: Brandon family joins those with concerns over Brian Pallister's travel

A Brandon family is joining those raising concerns about Progressive Conservative Leader Brian Pallister's travel schedule at the height of the 2014 flood.

Joel and Jennifer Melkosky say the NDP was the only party to reach out to them during the 2014 flood

Joel and Jennifer Melkosky spoke to reporters at a press conference in their home organized by Brandon East NDP candidate Drew Caldwell on Saturday. (Riley Laychuk/CBC)

A Brandon family is joining those raising concerns about Progressive Conservative Leader Brian Pallister's travel schedule at the height of the 2014 flood.

Joel and Jennifer Melcosky's home is about 15 metres away from the banks of the Assiniboine River in Brandon. Their property were threatened by high water in both 2011 and 2014. 

"In 2011 the water level was quite intimidating," Jennifer said Saturday at a news conference organized by Brandon East NDP candidate Drew Caldwell. "As a parent, I found you were so worried about the kids and making sure our children were safe."

The family told reporters they received constant support from Caldwell during the floods. They claimed he even went as far as helping move furniture to higher ground. 

"Drew Caldwell and members of the party came, they helped us move furniture, they answered questions, they found out information for us," Jennifer said.

She said the NDP was the only party to reach out and offer support at the time. 

"We were promised we were going to be OK and that's what got me through," Jennifer said. 

It was revealed last week that Pallister was in Costa Rica during the 2014 flood. He previously said that he was at a wedding in Alberta at the time.

The Melcosky's questioned why he was abroad instead of helping the community through the flood.

Meanwhile, Pallister was in Brandon on Saturday helping door knock with local candidates. He was expected to be back in Winnipeg for an event at 6 p.m. 

Heather Stefanson, PC candidate for Tuxedo, responded to the Melcosky's story at a news conference Saturday afternoon in Winnipeg.

"I think we've reached out to a lot of people during tough times," Stefanson said. 

"We've talked to a lot of people, families, who are out of their homes for several years, and who are still out of their homes, because of this NDP government. So, to say they are the only ones helping, they are not helping those people that are still out of their homes."

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