CORNER BROOK — Dale Kirby is not letting the recent poll results go to his head, he recognizes the party has a lot of work to do over the next three years.
The New Democratic Party representative in the House of Assembly for St. John's North has been busy doing just that. He has been in western Newfoundland in recent days, combining a bit of vacation time with his political work.
He attended the Bay St. George Mi'kmaq Powwow Friday and met with a representative of the College of the North Atlantic in Stephenville. Sunday, he met with supporters in Stephenville and did the same in Corner Brook Monday.
He also visited Grenfell Campus of Memorial University in the afternoon and attended a showing of the Stage West Theatre Festival in the evening.
This weekend he will be attending the St. Anthony Come Home Year celebrations.
In Corner Brook Monday, just prior to meeting with approximately a dozen supporters in the early part of the scheduled gathering, Kirby said the recent provincial public opinion poll that placed the NDP in first place was just one poll.
"I think we are headed the right direction, but there is an incredible amount of work to be done," he said.
"We have to make sure that Humber East, Humber West, Bay of Islands, Humber Valley are ready to support local candidates next time around.
"We have to run the best organized campaigns we have ever run in these areas."
The party has no intentions of making promises to people it can't fulfill, according to the university professor and education and skills critic. Following his meeting at Grenfell he said there is a continuous evolution there.
"I personally don't believe we have heard the last of the call for autonomy here," he said. "It is like lunar cycles, eventually it will come back around again.
"I am very supportive of what local academic leaders and community leaders see as the future of the Grenfell Campus."
As a party he said it would be important to hear what the people want in terms of the future of the university here.
"I do see potential for growth and additional program areas that can be added," he said.
"I think we need to continue to grow the campus as far as is reasonable, always being cognizant of the declining youth population in Newfoundland and Labrador."
He said the collaboration between all post-secondary institutions in the area is vital.