Letters to the Editor, March 2, 2016

Donate a day for a leap of faith in Canada



Most Canadians enjoyed a day off work this February, and got an extra day in their calendar on the 29th.

Why not consider what you can do with the hours gained that day for your community and your country?

You made an extra day’s pay if you worked Feb. 29, or maybe it was just an extra day to do with what you wanted? Why not then give an hour or two of your time or wages back to the community and charitable organizations that help you and Canadians right across this country?

If just 10 per cent of Canadians invested an hour of their time or wages we’d see a direct stimulus to our local economies of some $52 million (@ $15 per hour). And if we all gave just an hour that would be a half billion dollars for community and charity work. A billion if our governments and businesses matched the investment.

Just think what good could be done for the benefit of Canadians and their communities?

Leap Year Day 2016, offered an extra day for us all; we could choose to pay-back that time, helping our communities and investing in our country.

We’d like to invite all Canadians to consider our heritage as Canada’s 150th birthday approaches. We are lucky to live here, and our community groups and charities do much to make this country great.

Let’s invest just a little of our time or wages to kick-start the next 150 years.

Laurie GourlayPresident, VICCS



We have  heard Premier Christy Clark say Site C is going to provide jobs for the people of B.C. Would someone then explain why so many contracts have been awarded to Spanish and Korean companies –  perhaps as high as 80 per cent?

A job posting in the Alaska Highway News of Feb. 9, 2016 lists the following duties: “creating the Monthly Temporary Workers Report” and “Assisting in the Temporary Foreign Worker process”.

With all the unemployment we have in Canada, why are the B.C. Liberals handing out jobs to foreign corporations and temporary foreign workers? Aren’t the unemployed in B.C., Alberta and Saskatchewan, good enough to work in B.C. on a project that will be paid for by B.C. taxpayers?

Did Premier Christy Clark forget Site C is being built on traditional First Nations land? Why aren’t First Nations workers in the area being trained for these jobs?

Whatever is going on the B.C. Liberals owe it to us, the taxpayers, to come clean about who is getting the contracts and jobs on Site C. It is after all going to cost us, the taxpayers, at least $8 billion.

There are tens of  thousands of unemployed in this country with the skills and education to do the work. We don’t need foreign workers. We need Canadian workers for Canadian jobs.

E. A. FosterCedar


Elective surgery: How long must we wait


I am writing this letter in hopes that others on Vancouver Island will also write expressing their frustration with regard to wait times for elective surgery.

Three years ago I was diagnosed with two hips which were at the acute stage and needed surgery in the very near future. I visited a clinic in Victoria and was advised by one of the surgeons that I would not be considered for surgery unless I was using a cane, walker or came riding in in a wheelchair.

At the present time I can no longer walk or sit for any length of time. I am on pain killers almost 24 hours a day in order to allow myself to be somewhat functional. I receive a maximum of four hours sleep per night, even with the assistance of pain killers.

Why is it that the provincial government has so little empathy for people with problems like mine? On their website, they say hip replacement surgery has a wait time of 56 weeks. This is so far from true, it is embarrassing to think the government is so wrong in their assessment. As yet, I am not even able to get on the wait list. I am 72 years old and will be more than likely in my eighties before my turn arrives.

My next door neighbour is awaiting his surgery; he is on the wait list, but has been told that he will be there 26 months.

The Cowichan District Hospital is approximately the same age as St. Paul’s in Vancouver. It is basically held together with duct tape. I recently had an ultra sound evaluation in a closet. This hospital is in desperate need of replacement. I admire those who work there, as they achieve excellence under very trying circumstances. Surely, they deserve more from our government.

Do we constantly live with these kinds of frustrations because most of Vancouver Island is represented by New Democrats while the government is Liberal? Do the residents of Vancouver Island not deserve better?

I know I am among hundreds of people who are waiting for elective surgery, and am quite willing to wait my turn. I am certain that there are those who are even more desperate than myself. But surely government could do a better job meeting the needs of those who are waiting for medical assistance, no matter what their age.

If you are reading this letter, and are in agreement with my thoughts, please join in a letter writing campaign. Let’s really make a noise that will be heard by those in power.

Garth WilliamsDuncan