MLAs from across British Columbia — myself included — would typically be in Victoria right now advocating on behalf of their constituents and ensuring that the needs of our communities are brought to government’s attention and addressed. Unfortunately, the NDP government has chosen to delay our upcoming session of parliament for four weeks in order to give John Horgan more time to duck away from the questions that Opposition members would otherwise be asking him in the House. Right now, there are some crucial questions that need to be answered, because vital supports for British Columbians are being delayed along with the legislative process.I’m not even going to get into the two month budget delay!
For more than seven months, up to 15,000 of B.C.’s front-line workers — who have worked almost non-stop since the beginning of the pandemic, putting their own health and well-being at risk to prevent COVID from overwhelming our healthcare system — have been waiting for the supplemental pandemic pay that was promised to them by the NDP government.
In addition, B.C. businesses and families from across the province are currently struggling due to the ever-growing backlog of support payments promised to them by John Horgan. Of the $300 million Small and Medium-Sized Business Recovery Grant money that was approved more than 11 months ago, only $12 million has been distributed to business owners.Way too little, way too late! Business are closing premier!
As government fails to get money out the door and into the hands of those who need it, it is the most vulnerable members of our communities who are hit the hardest. While hundreds of thousands of British Columbians are still waiting on their one-time COVID benefit that was promised to them by Christmas of 2020, people living with disabilities are being left without the government funding meant to replace their COVID income and disability assistance payments that were subsequently cut in half by the NDP back in January.
Despite the NDP’s best efforts to delay parliamentary business, my colleagues in the opposition caucus are taking these valuable weeks to connect with constituents and hear how these backlogs are impacting them— because sooner or later, John Horgan will have to return to the Legislature and answer to British Columbians.