On May 6th, 2014, Bill M 212: Poverty Reduction and Economic Inclusion Act was put forward as a motion in the British Columbia Legislature. If passed the bill would legislate the launch of a comprehensive poverty reduction strategy to address poverty in BC. BCPIAC urges Premier Clark and the BC Government to support this important bill. The following is BCPIAC’s letter to the Premier:
(Vancouver) May 7, 2014 Anti-poverty advocates at social justice organizations around the province report that the BC Ministry of Social Development and Social Innovation’s computer system has been crashing for much of the last week, and remains mostly offline. During this time, the Ministry has not been able to provide many of its clients with much-needed services, including shelter and support payments, security deposits, crisis grants, and eligibility assessments for people with an immediate need for welfare.
The BC Utilities Commission released a decision on April 25, 2014 about the fees BC Hydro will be allowed to charge its residential customers under the Meter Choices Program who choose not to have a smart meter installed at their home.
BC Hydro originally planned to install smart meters at every residential customer’s home. In July 2013, following significant opposition by customers, the provincial government directed BC Hydro to provide an opt-out program (with associated charges), available only to those customers who did not already have a smart meter.
(Vancouver) September 27, 2013. Starting on Monday, September 30, 2013, the BC Human Rights Tribunal will hear about the shocking human rights abuses experienced by tree planters employed by Khaira Enterprises Ltd., more than three years after the company’s Golden, B.C. tree planting camp was shut down by authorities.
The complainants, who are primarily immigrants and refugees of African origin, will testify that the owners of Khaira Enterprises subjected them to extreme acts of racism and sexism; from verbal insults to inhuman working and living conditions.
“We will argue that racism and discrimination were at the root of the horrific experiences that they endured,” said Eugene Kung, counsel for 50 Khaira tree planters who have brought the complaint. “The Human Rights Tribunal hearing will address that discrimination directly.”
The BC Employment Standards Branch previously awarded the workers about $260,000 in unpaid wages, but the workers have received less than half the amount owing.
“The workers will ask the Tribunal to share their view that discrimination has no place in British Columbia,” said Mr. Kung.
Please note that several of the tree planters will be testifying about their experiences at the hearing, but will not be speaking to the media directly.
BC Human Rights Tribunal address is: 1170-605 Robson St, Vancouver, BC
For more information, please contact Eugene Kung or Sarah Khan at BCPIAC at (604) 687- 3063