EDITORIAL: Helping those who want to work

Parksville-Qualicum MLA Michelle Stilwell and the B.C. Liberals talk a good game about job creation, but there's no evidence of it here

They are easy to see in the big cities.

You can find homeless, addicted, hungry, mentally-challenged people in droves on Hastings Street in Vancouver, or any big city for that matter.

We don’t often see them here in our little paradise called Parksville Qualicum Beach. Rest assured, the hungry, homeless and working poor are here, however.

In her first installment today of a three-part series on these issues (see page A5), reporter Lissa Alexander tells the story of a local man who has moved 18 times since 2002.

Alexander also provides some sobering stats about the vacancy rate here and what percentage of their income people are paying in rent.

More than one-third of the people using local food banks are employed, many of them full-time. Others are on disability pensions — they can’t find suitable employment and the pensions hardly supply enough for healthy meals, let alone stable residency.

In future installments in this series, Alexander examines child poverty in our region.

It sounds fairly bleak, sure, but we feel it’s something that needs to be exposed, needs to be better understood, if there are to be any solutions.

Alexander has also solicited the opinions of politicians, volunteers and those who work in the social services here in an attempt to offer solutions, or at least their versions of solutions.

Parksville-Qualicum MLA Michelle Stilwell hasn’t exactly been a shining star in this regard. She offers statistics on what the Liberals have done with our tax dollars over the past decade on this file, but there has been nothing concrete for the people of her constituency in terms of job creation.

There are those who believe the government should take care of them from cradle to grave. We don’t have much time for that view, and we believe the people of this constituency don’t either, as evidenced by the result of the last provincial election.

But there are those, right here in our backyard, who want to work, want to contribute. Those are the people Stilwell and the Liberals should be helping.

— Editorial by John Harding

Just Posted

Parksville council supports applications for four new non-medical retail cannabis shops

Business licences won’t be issued without provincial government approval

Parksville council members vote themselves a hike in pay

Mayor goes from $40.9K to $52.5K and councillors from $16.9K to $30K

Multi-use village green space proposed for Qualicum Beach

Early development plans see a gathering space at the old bus garage site

UPDATE: City of Parksville buys 222 Corfield site

With the purchase, the city will not facilitate cold-weather shelter on property

B.C.’s fight to regulate bitumen through pipelines to go to Canada’s top court

BC Appeal Court judges found B.C. cannot restrict bitumen flow along Trans Mountain pipeline

So, do you know ‘Dave from Vancouver Island’?

Ontario man searching for fellow he travelled with in Europe 50 years ago

B.C. man, 30, arrested for driving his parent’s cars while impaired twice in one day

The Vancouver-area man was arrested after officers caught him driving impaired twice in one day

New airline regulations bring compensation for tarmac delays, over-bookings

Some of the new regulations will roll out in July, while others are expected for December.

More than half of Canadians support ban on handguns, assault rifles: study

Divide between rural and urban respondents in latest Angus Reid Institute public opinion study

Spring rain needed as B.C. sees one of the lowest snowpack levels in 40 years

Snowpack levels in B.C. recorded on May 15 were similar to those in 2015 and 2016

Theresa May to quit as party leader June 7, sparking race for new PM

The new Conservative leader will become prime minister without the need for a general election

Parksville mom who lost son to brain tumour joins 24th annual walk

Brain Tumour Walk takes place at the University of Victoria on Sunday, May 26

B.C. man who fell off cliff returns there to rescue eagle from vulture attack

Nanaimo’s James Farkas, who broke his hip in a fall, saves eagle on same beach months later

Most Read