For immediate release
February 24, 2022
VICTORIA, B.C. – After rising in the House to speak to the motion on Select Standing Committees, Sonia Furstenau, leader of the B.C. Greens and MLA for Cowichan Valley has issued the following statement:
“At a time when building trust in our democracy is more important than ever, we need to see concrete examples of collaboration in the Legislature. Committees are a means to bring MLAs, experts, people with lived experience, and the public together to forge urgent solutions to pressing crises, and the B.C. Greens are calling on the BC NDP to make this legislative work a priority.
“As our province faces more and more emergencies, working across party lines ensures we are aligned and able to support the government in moving forward urgently and decisively with solutions that will save the lives of British Columbians. When each party hears the same information, input, evidence, testimonies, and potential solutions at the same time, when we are at the table together hearing the questions of our colleagues, the input of experts, of people with lived experience – it de-politicizes the implementation of those solutions.
“In 2021, 2,224 people died from a toxic drug supply and the rate of death continues to climb – for the last two months seven people died each day. MLA Shirley Bond and I have been relentless in pushing for this government to create an all-party committee, to recognize that an emergency of this scale – an emergency that is killing people every single day – should have a response that recognizes the need for collaboration and cooperation.
“This crisis affects every community and impacts families in every part of this province. We need to use the tools that are a part of this institution – tools that previous parliaments have created as a means of enhancing the work we do, of strengthening our democratic work, of demonstrating to this province that some things are above partisanship, that seven people dying every day is a reason to try everything at our disposal to solve this.
“We have had an all-party approach to review health regulations in this province, we have had an all-party committee present a path forward for ride hailing, we have had the BC Wild Salmon Advisory Council. We can surely recognize that while we deal with two health crises, there is an argument for bringing the members of this house to work collaboratively, in a non-partisan way, to urgently recommend and implement solutions required to save lives.”
B.C. Green Caucus
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