Must Reads from Last Week
BC Electoral Reform Referendum
New Zealand gives B.C. a lesson on proportional representation
How refreshing to see a thoughtful, informative piece in the Vancouver Sun. It actually addresses some of the concerns raised by PR opponents in B.C. and comments on how those same concerns were laid to rest by the New Zealand experience.
And from young voters…
“Young people are cut out of the political process by the vested interests who have a lot at stake in the upcoming referendum on electoral reform. It’s time to change that.” Read more.
And from the Comox Valley Record…
An editorial that truly does provide a balanced viewpoint on the referendum. Excerpt: “The universality of the message shows those [Liberal] MLAs are neither representing the views of their constituents or even their personal views. Instead, they are representing the views of their party, to us.” Read more.
Fair Vote Canada’s AGM
Here’s a panel discussion video from Fair Vote Canada’s AGM: “Panel discussion on how to make an end of PR in 2019 with Ed Broadbent, training NDP leader, Paul Gregory, green party director and Ryan Campbell, liberal activist for PR. Discussion on how to ensure that electoral reform is a challenge in 2019, with Ed Broadbent, former leader of the NDP, Paul Gregory, director of the Green Party of Canada, and Ryan Campbell, liberal activist for Reform Election.”
On June 7 we got the Premier’s statement on recommendations for PR referendum
Excerpt: “Today, cabinet accepted the recommendations of the Attorney General on how the referendum on a new voting system will take place. Regulations are being prepared and the government will ask Elections BC to review the question, to ensure that the language used is clear and simple to understand.” Read more.
Fair Vote Comox Valley canvassing blitz Saturday, June 9, 2018
We had six, 2-person teams out canvassing in Cumberland as part of the Vote PR BC Day of Action around B.C. The group knocked on a whopping 178 doors. Of the 98 home, 49 were aware of the referendum and 49 were not. Two areas were chosen for this canvass - one with newer homes and one with older homes. There wasn’t much difference in the statistics between the two areas. In the area of older homes, the percentage of persons aware of the referendum was marginally higher, as were the number of persons in favour of PR. Also, we picked up 14 pledges in this area and none in the newer area. One canvassing team reported that they had come in contact with several younger people and found them quite receptive to the idea of PR. Another team reported our first known person who mentioned they had become aware of the referendum at the Cumberland Fair, which was also an action Fair Vote Comox Valley did. At 50 percent unaware today , we still have work to do. Again Thank you to the canvassers for showing up! I am so proud that the Comox Valley has such a strong team of door-to-door canvassers. FVCV is now getting close to having knocked on 2000 doors. Well done everyone!
Fair Vote Comox Valley (FVCV) is a multi-partisan group of people who have been working on this referendum campaign since last fall. They have been out canvassing since February. It is now June and still half or slightly more than half the people talked to are not aware of the referendum at all, never mind what the referendum is about. Based on the overwhelmingly positive response at the door to the idea of a proportional voting system, FVCV believes that if they can talk to enough people face to face, either through canvassing or tabling, this referendum will get strong support in the Comox Valley. More “boots on the ground” are needed, though.
Participatory democracy is one of the six core principles of the Green Party, so all Greens hopefully are doing whatever is possible to help this referendum pass. The Green Party of Canada and the BC Greens also feel that a non-partisan approach to the referendum is better than a partisan approach, and all the Fair Vote-affiliated groups are non-partisan (or multi-partisan). To find out how you can get involved in your local community, go to the Fair Vote Canada/BC website and find a local group. In the Comox Valley, you can contact Megan Ardyche, FVCV Volunteer Coordinator, at firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, if you belong to a group and you think a speaker from FVCV would be useful to present information on the referendum and on proportional representation, you can also contact Megan and she will connect you with a local speaker. Lastly, check out FVCV’s Facebook page.
City of Courtenay Open House: Connecting Courtenay Transportation Master Plan
DATE: June 19, 2018, 5-7 p.m.
LOCATION: Florence Filberg Centre Conference Hall
“Share your input on proposed transportation improvements! The City of Courtenay is developing the “Connecting Courtenay” Transportation Master Plan which will include long-term plans for all modes of transportation over the next 20 years, as well as investments within the next five to 10 years. We are seeking your input on the proposed long-term plans for roads, sidewalks, and bike lanes.”
Social Procurement in the Village of Cumberland
Cumberland is leading the way. Read more.
Part 1: Carihi Secondary School in Campbell River got rainbow steps in May 2018. ““It represents who we are here, it represents diversity and inclusion,” said Fred Schaub, principal of the school. We really value that and we’re really proud of who we are.” Read more.
Part 2: Inaugural Pride flag raising at Highland high school, Comox Read more.
Kus-Kus-Sum Multi-Media Spectacle
DATE: June 28-30, July 1, show starts at 8 – 11:00 p.m.
LOCATION: Kus-Kus-Sum property
The Nomadic Tempest production takes place on the waterfront, on a ship. An “intense, beautiful, gritty, experimental and important…apocalyptic rock opera.” Tickets are $25 for adults and $15 for those under 14. Get tickets here. Read more. BRING YOUR OWN CHAIR!
Good news: Nests, dens, other habitats to be protected in southeastern B.C.
World Oceans Day celebrated in Port Hardy
DATE/TIME: Monday, June 11, 12:30pm – 1:30pm
LOCATION: Ronna-Rae Leonard’s office, 437-5th St., Courtenay
The monthly public‘stand’ demonstration outside Ronna-Rae Leonard’s office, 437-5th Street from 12:30 to 1:30. Bring your signs and your friends - and maybe a letter to Ronna-Rae to drop off.
Part 1: Watch this Alexandra Morton 4-minute video on a decision the BC NDP government has to make very soon on renewing salmon farm licenses and upcoming court cases. Municipalities are starting to vote to eliminate fish farms in their areas.
Part 2: Watershed Watch Salmon Society is holding a wild salmon rally province-wide to remind the B.C. government how important wild salmon are to us. Bring your rod. Wear your gumboots. Or just show up in your everyday work clothes. A few fishers have made noises about bringing their boats along and parking them out front. We think that is a great idea! Everyday British Columbians love B.C. wild salmon. They’re a part of who we are.
At noon on June 13th, go to your MLA’s office and ask them to defend our wild salmon.
RSVP: Courtenay-Comox: Ronna Rae Leonard’s office, 437-5th St., June 13, 12-1 p.m.
RSVP: Campbell River: Claire Trevena’s office, 908 Island Hwy., June 13, 12-1 p.m.
Amazing turnout in Comox Valley for the Day of Action, June 4, 2018: Read this and this about the protest in Courtenay. Here is Mark de Bruijn’s speech at the protest. (Mark de Bruijn is with the Greens of North Island-Powell River Electoral District Association Executive.
How a B.C. community’s water shortage threatens a provincial park
Increased population growth and climate change collide on the Sunshine Coast. Read more.
Vancouver Island ‘ground zero’ for ocean plastics issue
NIPR’s AGM – NEXT SATURDAY
DATE: June 16, 2018.
LOCATION: Campbell River.
Fill out NIPR’s survey to give us direction for the next year. Whether or not you live in NIPR’s riding and whether or not you are attending the AGM, WE WANT TO HEAR FROM YOU.
Elizabeth May’s Week in Review
This week, Elizabeth had more than two dozen interventions on national security, gun control, environmental assessment, Budget 2018 and criminal justice reform. She also posed a question to the Minister of Natural Resources on the Trans Mountain pipeline purchase.
On that note, help Elizabeth get to 10 000 signatures on her petition to halt this reckless deal. The e-petition introduced last week has collected more than 8000 names – let’s keep the momentum going! Click here to sign. Read more.
Elizabeth May addressing the Federation of Canadian Municipalities annual conference in Halifax
Green Party of Canada Biennial Convention
Beaver Lake Cree Nation legal action to stop tar sands
Excerpt: “The conflict is between the promise in Treaty 6 signed back in 1876 that guarantees Beaver Lake Cree Nation the right to hunt, trap, fish and gather medicines in perpetuity throughout their traditional territory, and the government’s allowable ‘taking up of lands’ — also in the treaty. Here’s the thing: if a mega project or several are destroying all the elements underpinning the treaty, it shows you’ve got a serious constitutional problem on your hands.” Read more.
Here’s the feel-good moment of the day: A Winnipeg high school holds a grad powwow for the 9th year
Read more. The article includes a video.
World Environment Day, June 5, 2018
Check out the UN World Environment Day site. The theme is to reduce our use of plastics.
Gender Parity at the UN
Sexist Laws Around the World
Take this quiz from one.org to see if you can spot the sexist laws still on the books. Quick fact: A staggering 2.7 billion women - that’s well over half of all women in the world – are banned from doing certain jobs.
Not all heroes wear bras
This is a great article! Many older people think young women aren’t feminists, but read this.
Excerpt: “This young girl was reprimanded and shamed because there was a remote possibility that her unsupported breasts might offend the male gaze. Because her breasts, free of the constraints of a bra, might be seen as a public menace and must be squeezed into submission or forever banished from unsuspecting victims’ line of vision.”
Making gasoline from carbon sucked from the air?
Thought of the day:
“On World Environment Day, the message is simple: reject single-use plastic. Refuse what you can’t re-use. Together, we can chart a path to a cleaner, greener world.” — Secretary-General, António Guterres