BCPIAC Press Releases

BCPIAC Press Releases

Media releases about BCPIAC cases, campaigns and areas of focus. If you would like to receive our press advisories and press release sign up to our media list. If you have further questions, please contact us.

BC woman’s Charter challenge forces provincial government to provide legal representation to all people detained under the Mental Health Act

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE | BCPIAC Please note, there is a court-ordered publication ban in place BC woman’s Charter challenge forces provincial government to provide legal representation to all people detained under the Mental Health Act VANCOUVER, B.C. – A BC woman known as Z.B. has won an important legal victory ensuring that everyone detained under the Mental Health Act has access to legal representation when their continued detention is under review. The BC government has settled Z.B.’s Charter challenge by agreeing to adequately fund legal aid for individuals detained under the Mental Health Act. In August 2016, Z.B., who was then ...
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Amid spiking costs, BC Hydro regulator to issue decision on rates for BC’s poor

MEDIA ADVISORY | BCPIAC Amid spiking costs, BC Hydro regulator to issue decision on rates for BC’s poor The BC Utilities Commission, which regulates the province’s electricity rates, has announced it will issue its decision in BC Hydro’s rate review process on Friday, January 20, 2017. In its decision, the Commission will determine rate structures and conditions of service for BC Hydro’s residential, business and industrial customers. The BC Public Interest Advocacy Centre (BCPIAC) is seeking an order that BC Hydro implement programs for low income residential customers including a discounted rate for electricity, low income customer rules, and a ...
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BC man wins important human rights victory for Deaf people in need of welfare

For Immediate Release | BCPIAC BC man wins important human rights victory for Deaf people in need of welfare VANCOUVER, B.C. – Christopher Shay has won his human rights complaint against the BC Ministry of Social Development and Social Innovation, with the Ministry agreeing to make a range of changes to improve accessibility and fairness for people who have communication barriers and need welfare. Mr. Shay, who is Deaf, applied for income assistance in September, 2014, but had to wait 5 weeks to receive a welfare cheque. Mr. Shay, who had received eviction notices because he couldn’t pay his rent, ...
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Anti-poverty advocates call for BC Hydro to implement an electricity affordability program for BC’s poor

For Immediate Release | BCPIAC Anti-poverty advocates call for BC Hydro to implement an electricity affordability program for BC’s poor August 15, 2016 (Vancouver) Starting on August 16, 2016, the BC Utilities Commission (BCUC) will hold a public hearing to review BC Hydro’s Rate Design Application (RDA). In this process, the BCUC will hear evidence and submissions from BC Hydro and intervener groups and determine rate structures and terms and conditions of service for residential, business and industrial customers. The BC Public Interest Advocacy Centre (BCPIAC) is intervening on behalf of seven organizations in this rare opportunity to ask the ...
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BC woman launches challenge for right to legal representation in Mental Health Act detentions

For Immediate Release | BCPIAC BC woman launches challenge for right to legal representation in Mental Health Act detentions Please note, there is a court-ordered publication ban in place VANCOUVER, B.C. – On Friday, August 12, 2016, Z.B., a woman currently detained in hospital as an involuntary patient under the Mental Health Act, launched a legal challenge in the B.C. Supreme Court, arguing that she has the constitutional right to a government-funded lawyer at an upcoming review of her detention. Z.B. has asked the Court to grant an injunction requiring the Province to provide her with a lawyer for her ...
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Islamophobia Legal Assistance Hotline launched by legal community

Islamophobia Legal Assistance Hotline launched by legal community For Immediate Release | BCPIAC, CLAS, BCCLA, FACLBC, SABABC, CBABC, NCCM, CABL, Access Pro Bono VANCOUVER (March 9, 2016) – Today the legal community in British Columbia launched the Islamophobia Legal Assistance Hotline, after a nationwide increase in reported incidents of racial and faith-related discrimination against Muslims in recent months. The hotline will connect individuals who have experienced discrimination with free, confidential legal advice and information. The number is 604-343-3828. Members of the public can also learn about the service at islamophobiahotline.ca. “Islamophobia can be experienced in many different ways,” said Sarah ...
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Khaira tree planters win EI appeals after six years

Khaira tree planters win EI appeals after almost six years For Immediate Release | BCPIAC Almost 6 years after closure of the Khaira Enterprise Ltd. camp in Golden, BC, Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) has sided with former Khaira tree planters in EI and income tax appeals stemming from work they did in 2010. Most of the workers came to Canada through the refugee resettlement process from various countries in Africa and worked long hours for Khaira, but were not paid for much of their work, which included long hours traveling between campsites and worksites in remote locations around BC. CRA ...
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Tim Hortons: Human rights complaint to proceed against fast food giant

Tim Hortons: Human rights complaint to proceed against fast food giant Company fails in bid to have complaint thrown out For Immediate Release | BCPIAC and CLAS Last Friday, the BC Human Rights Tribunal rejected Tim Hortons’ attempt to have a human rights complaint against it dismissed at an early stage.  The complaint was brought in 2012 by four temporary foreign workers from Mexico who say they experienced discrimination in the workplace while they were employed at two Tim Hortons locations in Dawson Creek, BC, while the franchise owner was also their landlord. The workers allege that they were ...
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Increasing BC Hydro rates drive request for an electricity affordability program

Increasing BC Hydro rates drive request for an electricity affordability program for BC’s poor For Immediate Release | BCPIAC Legal advocacy group, the BC Public Interest Advocacy Centre (BCPIAC) will ask the BC Utilities Commission (BCUC) to implement an electricity affordability program for BC Hydro’s 160,000 low income residential customers. The proposal consists of three strategies to address the hardship caused by high hydro rates on low income customers:
  • lifeline rates to keep rates more affordable for the poorest customers;
  • low income customer service rules including more flexible arrears payment arrangements and waiver of reconnection fees; and
  • emergency bill ...
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Ombudsperson office denied request for systemic investigation into inaccessibility at BC’s welfare ministry

Ombudsperson office denied request for systemic investigation into inaccessibility at BC’s welfare ministry For Immediate Release | BCPIAC In a decision dated June 23, 2015, then Ombudsperson, Kim Carter, denied the request of nine social service agencies from across the province for a systemic investigation into service reductions at the Ministry of Social Development and Social Innovation that shut out many eligible people from accessing income assistance. The complaint, filed by the BC Public Interest Advocacy Centre (BCPIAC), a law office in Vancouver, in May 2015, alleged that the government has created insurmountable barriers that deprive people of critical income ...
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