MEET THE CANDIDATES
The Questions asked in the event will be attributed to the person or organization who submitted them.
QUESTIONS TO CANDIDATES, #1- #40 - As submitted by October 11th. Questions after the 11th are not yet shown below.
1. The North Island MLA has historically been from the Strathcona Regional District. Many of the people who live within the Regional District of Mount Waddington have the opinion that our MLA is not adequately informed of the issues and challenges facing the residents of this part of the North Island. Who specifically in the region are your key advisors in all matters related to Local Politics, Forest Policy, Provincial and Marine Tenure, Indigenous Relations, Social Services, Health, and Transportation?
2. For the people employed in the Regional District of Mount Waddington, Statistics Canada shows a high median wage per capita, of the highest in rural BC. Yet the 2019 Child Poverty Report Card indicates we have the second highest child poverty rates in the Province behind the Central Coast Regional District, and 67% of single parents in the region live in Poverty. Why do you feel this is the case, and what would you do to repair this disparity during your first term of office?
3. On November 28th, 2019 the British Columbia Provincial Government enacted into law the United Nations Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, also known as UNDRIP. A common theme being heard on the North Island from Indigenous Government and business, as well as resource businesses and Municipalities is that the Province has not provided business, community and local Indigenous government with the tools or resources to safely and appropriately bridge from one reality to another. Can you suggest a mechanism that will preserve the fundamentals of UNDRIP while preserving community stability, employment and invested capital?
4. The North Island has some of the Province's lowest rates of post-secondary education within our young adult and Indigenous communities. As our MLA, what will you do to address this important issue?
5. What is your personal and party’s focus on assisting with the development and growth of tourism on the North Island?
6. COVID 19 has had a devastating effect on the now failing BC tourism business, especially eco-tourism. Federal and Provincial Government has assigned no specific economic relief for this billion-dollar industry and significant source of employment. Will your Party assist this industry and if so, how?
7. On the North Island, we believe that a rising tide floats all boats and equity is the cornerstone to growth. What will your party do to promote equitable entrepreneurship opportunities within Indigenous Communities?
8. Fish farming has been a contentious issue on the North Island for many years. Some support it while many do not. Will your party renew the leases for Fish Farms in the Broughton Archipelago and in the Discovery Islands?
9. In a 2019 study by BC-RCC, transportation is cited as the number one barrier to accessing health care, education and employment in rural British Columbia. 1.) What do you know about the challenges the Mount Waddington region has faced with public transportation in recent years, 2.) What do you see as the number one transportation issue, and 3.) What would you advocate as short and long-term solutions?
10. We are in changing time, culturally, economically, and socially. The most vulnerable in communities are generally the first to feel the impact of economic hardship and fall into an entrenched state of poverty, and small business owners are the most likely to incur bankruptcies. What does your party plan to do to support entrepreneurship, job creation and those most at risk?
11. During the USW strike against WFP, the company, opposition parties and some members of the public were calling for the government to intervene and legislate workers back to work or have a cooling off period. This was opposed by the USW. What would be the position you would advocate for in that situation?
12. The pandemic has increased the challenges faced by teachers and support staff to provide safe, quality, education to the students of our province. What are you and your party prepared to do to increase safety for students, families and staff in our public schools? What will do you do to address adequate supports for students with special needs?
13. The Campbell River Hospital Lab serves all the North Island. Services and funding have been taken from the Campbell River Hospital Lab and given to a private, for profit, corporation in Victoria. This has rendered the Campbell River Lab dysfunctional and unsustainable and has been harmful to patients. What are you going to do to restore service levels and funding?
14. There are already too few workers in seniors’ care. How will your party ensure that B.C. has enough qualified workers to prepare for an aging population?
15. How will you support seniors to age in place? Will you establish a tax credit to make it easier for seniors to access family-retained home care and home support and independent living options?
16. Respite and aging in place are a major issue. How do you see supporting this in a rural area with limited access to care?
17. What does your government foresee as the path for COVID-19 economic recovery on the North Island? What specific steps will you take in advocacy for the region?
18. In many regions’ employers are crying out for entry-level workers. How do you feel that guaranteed incomes and wage subsidies impact the workforce? Where will you stand on this conversation?
19. Of the 94 points in Canada’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Actions, which do you feel are the most relevant and timely for our region in the next 4 years?
20. What, if any, improvements do you see need to be made to BC Housing for more uptake in rural communities, and why?
21. The hidden cost of rural healthcare, transportation costs, are generally shouldered by rural people. It limits and inhibits access to people needing diagnostics and care. Centralization of services increases the cost to citizens and further compromised the ability of seniors to stay in community. What plans does your party have to support our community in their ability to access care? How do you intend to help ensure the supports end up in this region?
22. Prioritize what you think are the top issues that are and will be faced by North Islanders in the next 4 years.
23. Job losses at mills, such as seen in Port Alice, and other mill-closures around the province have occurred steadily over recent years. Provincial leadership is engaged in dialogue about maximizing fibre supply and supporting BC Business, but the companies already invested in mills can’t even make a viable go of it. What is your understanding of this situation? How do you think we can encourage and sustain large-scale investment when the message of failing mills is all we see in the news?
24. Will you commit right now to supporting legislation that officially recognizes and designates the working forest? [y/n]
25. What has your Party committed to do for Working Forests and Working Families in this election?
26. As possibly the next representative of our North Island riding, please elaborate on how you will work to support the resource industries this riding relies on so much?
27. Everyone is interested in housing affordability. The problem is that it’s so difficult to get new supply, which we all know will help address high prices and rents. The recent Development Approval Process Review report identified several ways for the provincial and local governments to streamline the approval of new housing supply. Will you commit to adopting these measures to fast-track development?
28. What tools are the most important to provide your constituents for implementing the principals of UNDRIP? What is your official party stance on this and where can we access information on this subject?
29. Policy changes in resource management have impacts that are often felt and understood at the grass-roots community level first. How do you see yourself representing the interests of the people invested in the community when decisions made elsewhere by individuals with no local ties or vested interest come home to roost in our towns?
30. The Province has been on the hook for the environmental reclamation of the Port Alice Mill site. Locally, we feel we have little to no control over what is happening on that site, or the future of that site. What do you understand about what is happening there, and how can you help the community of Port Alice and the North Island become more involved in or have some say in the future of this site, now largely being cleaned up with public dollars using service providers from outside our region?
31. The Swanson Occupation demonstrated the impasse between the Fish Farming Industry and First Nations Rights and Title. Answering under the premise that all in this conversation respect Rights and Title, and using this scale of conflict as an example of what may occur in the region, - how do you plan to facilitate the dialogue and relationship between parties in intensive conflicts of Provincial jurisdiction, and remain accessible and open to all your constituents needs?
32. Please summarize where you stand on the PST debate. Is a one year moratorium election pandering or will it have a positive effect that is capable of moving the dial in our economy?
33. Housing security is a major issue in the region. Please define how you see this problem and how we can apply provincial programs directly to our region?
34. We have a crisis in our care system for people with disabilities. Far too often, people with disabilities who live in their own homes are struggling to find care workers, particularly during this pandemic, putting their health at risk as they and their families try to manage with less support than they need. If elected, would you commit to improving the delivery of community care available regionally? Who do you see as the key parties in the region capable of working with you to implement additional supports?
35. You’re representing a diverse riding. What is your process in reaching the full breadth of your constituents? How will you meaningfully engage? What resources and commitments will you make to contacting us in an ongoing, dependable way?
36. We have significant job vacancies at Island Health and throughout non-profit community services. Lack of mental health care support may result in case intensification and the need for Intensive Case Management. What do you think the key reasons for these job vacancies are, and what is a short-term solution suggested by your party to fill them?
37. Public intoxication is an increasing point of conflict in some North Island Communities. What do you know about this situation and mitigation strategies? How would you suggest supporting current initiatives or remedying this?
38. We have a Federal Airport that is financially supported. Many in our region are concerned that with extensive international losses due to COVID-19 the private carriers servicing rural areas are facing economic threats that may cause them to cease operations. This will negatively impact the health, wellbeing and prosperity of our region. If the private carriers come under threat of pulling out, what aids do you know of to directly support them? What can you do to help? How does your party plan to ensure rural communities stay connected?
39. What is your number one goal for the next 4 years, and why?
40. What connections do you have with First Nations communities and how do you feel equipped to bring the Indigenous Perspective of North Island Nations to the Provincial Table?