There can no longer be a business-as-usual attitude by the provincial parties vying for election next spring.
There are issues coming into collision course and it’s not enough to tinker at the margins.
What’s needed from the parties are some real shifts in policy to ensure B.C. continues to be a viable place to live and work.
Here’s what’s different today since the 2013 election.
Then: We took housing for granted.
Today: We got bit. It turns out that ignoring the flood of foreign income into the region has turned B.C. into a playground for the rich. What this means is young adults have to lower their expectations considerably or either give up living in the Lower Mainland.
What’s needed: A sensible plan that ensures people can live here and raise their families here.
Then: People accepted that daycare was a private concern.
Today: If it’s too late to save housing, can daycare be made more affordable so young people can still have kids? The NDP’s John Horgan has promised $10-a-day daycare but estimates are that it would cost $1 billion to $1.5 billion to pay for it. Where will the money come from?
What’s needed: A drastic shift in priorities to lower the cost of daycare.
Then: LNG development was the magic bullet to provide jobs in the future.
Now: That hasn’t happened. The majority of jobs being created now are low-wage and part-time service jobs. There are good jobs that pay well but the cost of tuition is putting young people in the poorhouse. The Liberals’ Skills for Jobs Blueprint to boost education in high-demand areas is a good first step, and the revised education system with its focus on 21st Century skills will help prepare future generations.
What’s needed: Properly funded kindergarten to Grade 12 and post-secondary education to meet rising costs.
Business as usual? No. Let’s expect more from our politicians than the usual business.
– Black Press