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Letters to the Editor



After watching the program "Broken Promises" last Saturday (April 23), I was reminded of Gordon Campbell's broken promises to our province. B.C. health care with Gordon Campbell's Liberals has given us closed hospitals and emergency rooms across the province. The few who can afford to pay can take the express lane and go to a private hospital so they do not have to put on a long waiting list for surgeries.

The elderly and people with disabilities in our community have been hurt. Gordon Campbell increased MSP premiums by 50 per cent, raised Pharmacare costs for 420,000 seniors, cut drugs from Pharmacare, disbanded seniors advisory council and reduced home support services. Seniors and people with disabilities are choosing between life-saving medications and food! The seniors of province are to be thanks for helping build Canada for the great country it is and this is how the BC Liberals repay them. Shame.

Gordon Campbell has lied to the children of the province. The Liberals have increased class sizes and taken away much-needed teachers' aides, limited library time for most schools and closed over 100 school libraries. Under Gordon Campbell's government 113 schools were closed, 2,600 teachers are gone and 20,000 students were displaced. BC Liberals eliminated the independent office of the child, youth and family advocates. They have also lowered the minimum age for work to 12 and lowered the minimum wage to $6 and hour for new workers. B.C. can be proud of having the worse child labour laws in North America!

Our community along with 23 other communities lost their courthouses, denying justice services to thousands who have to travel outside their community. Squamish also lost our Ministry of Human Recourses, leaving children and families at risk. Funding for our community services for childcare, women, the youth and people with disabilities was reduced or cut.

Gordon Campbell's Liberals would like us to forget the past four years of privatizing all of or part of BC Hydro, BC Rail, hospital services and ICBC. I for one will not forget and will be voting NDP. This Liberal government has nothing to be proud of. Gordon Campbell's Liberals built their platform of broken promises on the backs of the elderly, women, children young workers, working families and people with disabilities. Gordon Campbell has hurt the most vulnerable citizens in our society. Who's next Gordon Campbell?

Shelly Appleton


Liberal campaign manager 'extremely naïve'


I read your article about Jason Koshman, the Squamish Liberal campaign manager, on page A10 of the most recent Chief (May 6) with growing astonishment. To believe that the residents of Squamish want four more years of the provincial Liberals sounds extremely naive. He has obviously only spoken with a very small and selected group of residents. I am not aware of anybody that believes another four years of Gordon Campbell would be a smart choice.

To be seduced into voting for the Liberals one has to believe the untruths and misinformation being presented by their local candidate Joan McIntyre. What a joke that she believes that the Liberals have supported things that are important to people in this town, who exactly is she trying to kid? The Liberals have proved time and time again that they simply do not have any social conscience.

Jason's comment that a centrist approach is needed is probably the only reasonable comment made.

However, while the federal Liberals could be labeled as centrist, the provincial Liberals certainly cannot. A vote for the Liberals provincially would be far more comparable to a vote for the Conservatives federally. A far 'right of centre' choice for sure!

I say give the Greens a chance. Dennis Perry is making a lot more sense. It's about time they had a seat, and maybe this madness over the Eagle Ridge Bluffs highway route will turn a good percentage of the West Vancouver voters away from the Liberals.

Russell Couchman


We've had enough


I am writing in response to Gordon Campbell's platform brochure and his "Great Goals for A Golden Decade". Gordon Campbell's Liberals plan to "Build the best system of support in Canada for persons with disabilities, special needs, children at risk, and seniors".

Voters need to remember this promise is one we've heard before from Gordon Campbell. It's also a promise we have seen broken. The Campbell government has had four years to "build the best system of support", but instead, they have systematically dismantled our health care services and programs with no regard for the people who now struggle with hardship as a direct result of the government's actions.

The Campbell Liberals have made drastic cuts to jobs, programs and services in health care. Hospitals across the province have been downsized or closed altogether, leaving some smaller communities without access to medical care which was paid for by the people of this province. We have also seen the less than satisfactory results of contracting out in many of the remaining hospitals, along with the consequences of job lay-offs in our already short-staffed health care facilities.

Seniors and persons with disabilities who relied on home support have had those services severely reduced or withdrawn altogether. Home support is a necessity for many people who otherwise will not be able to continue living in their own homes. Yet, when Gordon Campbell was called upon to meet with seniors' representatives to discuss the issue of home support, he refused. This request was backed by 2,500 postcards signed by seniors and concerned citizens.

As for children at risk, we have seen the Campbell Liberals shut down the Ministry of Children and Families office in Squamish, a resource that should be available in every community in this province. The social support system that provided services for families in difficulty is unraveling, despite past promises by the Campbell Liberals to make these services a priority.

Under Gordon Campbell's leadership we have also seen the closure of Women's Centres, Legal Aid funding discontinued, and child care funding cut by $42 million annually. Homelessness, just in the Lower Mainland alone, has risen by 100 per cent since 2002, and 12 per cent of the homeless population are people with employment. Under Campbell's Liberal government, B.C. has truly become a province where the rich get richer and the poor get poorer.

Now an election is drawing near and suddenly the Campbell Liberals are on a spending spree, offering millions of dollars and dozens of promises. But let's not forget what Gordon Campbell has taken away. The promises of new health care dollars are only a portion of the money cut from services during the past four years. Instead of promising healthier snacks in our schools, why not reduce classroom size and increase staff levels? Why not re-open our hospitals so children across this province have access to basic health care? Why not bring back our Women's Centres, restore daycare funding, increase affordable housing, re-open the Ministry of Children and Families offices that are now closed? Why not keep the promises made four years ago, instead of making new promises to break in the hope that British Columbians will forget the devastation already caused by the Liberal government?

Gordon Campbell is saying, "It's time to set great goals that oblige us to reach higher for our children, our families and our communities." I couldn't agree more. And that is exactly why I will be voting for a change in government on May 17th. The voters of this province have the opportunity to send Gordon Campbell a clear message - We've Had Enough!

Trudy McKay


Balance most important issue


A recent Province newspaper article detailed Liberal Finance Minister Colin Hansen's objections to having too many labour politicians running for the NDP. Calling one third of the candidates a "block of control" is crazy! The minister should realize that the same could be said of his government, but I'm sure he wouldn't agree the Liberals currently have 'block control'. Indeed, balance has become the most important issue in this election. British Columbians want a good quality of life and affordable opportunities to enjoy what their own province has to offer them.

The Liberal government has rolled back employment standards, safety regulations, all of which have taken Canadians hundreds of years and the loss of many loved ones in order to get where we were four years ago.

It is understandable that working people would want to get involved in decision making for the common good. People don't want basic standards to go backwards. We should be very concerned for our next generation and focused on what their environment will look like and how are they going to thrive. The business community needs to listen to the workforce and steer in the direction of keeping living wage jobs in this province.

Future generations won't understand what a public asset was because the Liberals will continue down the sellout road. Prosperity and greed come with an unacceptably high price tag for generations to come. Our children may never have a say in B.C. when their turn comes around because of the Liberal government's decisions of today.

Bev DawsonSquamish

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