Norma Blissett: Question of the Week

This is the fourth installment in the Townsman’s weekly series from the two declared Kootenay East candidates.

Norma Blissett

This is the fourth installment in the Townsman’s weekly series from the two declared Kootenay East candidates for the upcoming provincial election — Bill Bennett of the B.C. Liberals and Norma Blissett of the B.C. NDP. The question of the week is: What is your party’s commitment to poverty reduction?  What initiatives does your party have planned to address the number of children living in poverty?

B.C.’s New Democrats are committed to implementing a province–wide poverty reduction strategy.  The Liberals have left our province with the highest level of income inequality and the second worst record on child poverty in Canada.

An NDP government will make a $210 million annual investment in a B.C. Family Bonus Program, to reduce poverty and make life better for low and moderate-income families. This will provide up to $829 for each child under the age of 18.

The NDP under Adrian Dix will also:

• Increase income assistance rates by $20 per month indexed to inflation;

• Double the income–assistance earnings exemption to $400 per month;

• Strengthen Community Living B.C. and;

• Add new front line staff to the Ministry of Children and Families.

In addition, access to education and skills training is key to reducing inequality and growing a sustainable economy.  An NDP government will invest $40 million in skills training and $100 million in a needs-based, student grant program.

Funding has also been announced to increase spaces and lower the cost of childcare. Families with children in licensed care will save an average of $2,000 annually. This measure will ease the cost burden for parents, particularly those struggling to return to the workforce.

Increasing rates of poverty and inequality are unacceptable. The B.C. NDP will follow through on our commitment to make change for the better – to increase equality and give all British Columbians an opportunity to build a better life for themselves and their families. The programs we have announced address inequality and are meaningful steps to halt the unacceptable spread of poverty in this province.

All of these measures have been fully costed and accounted for in the B.C. NDP’s fiscal plan. Change for the better – one practical step at a time.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Homes evacuated in Fairmont due to localized flooding from heavy rainfall

RDEK has issued a state of local emergency, RCMP going door to door in affected areas

Southeast Kootenay school district set to reopen next week

Individual schools have creative timetables and schedules in order to adhere to public health orders

George Morris turns 99

Friends, family and neighbours gathered outside at Terra Lee Terraces in Cranbrook… Continue reading

Rotarians at work at Fred Scott Villas

Members of the Cranbrook Rotary Club, along with some key community volunteers,… Continue reading

The Weed Warrior: an invasive weed, new to the East Kootenay

Wild Parsnip is a plant that most of us don’t want to have a Close Encounter of any Kind with

WATCH: Cranbrook Farmer’s Market kicks off 2020 season

The first market of the year took place on Saturday, May 30.

Toronto Raptors’ Ujiri says conversations about racism can no longer be avoided

Thousands have protested Floyd’s death and repeated police killings of black men across the United States

‘I’m afraid’: Witnesses of wolf attack on senior near Prince Rupert worried about safety

Frank Russ shows where the unprovoked wolf attacked his father

Protesters prepare to rally against racism in front of Vancouver Art Gallery

Rally is in response to the deaths of black Americans and a Toronto woman

Introducing the West Coast Traveller: A voyage of the mind

Top armchair travel content for Alaska, Yukon, BC, Alberta, Washington, Oregon and California!

Protesters rally against anti-black, Indigenous racism in Toronto

Police estimated the crowd to be between 3,500 and 4,000 and said there was no violence

Feds earmark $1.5M to support recovery of B.C., Indigenous tourism

B.C. money will be split between Vancouver Island and Indigenous tourism

‘We’re sick of it’: Anger over police killings shatters U.S.

Tens of thousands marched to protest the death of George Floyd

Most Read