MLA Mable Elmore, Social Development Minister Shane Simpson and UNBC social work professor Dawn Hemingway announce public consultation on a poverty reduction plan, Oct. 30, 2017. (Black Press)

B.C. poverty reduction starts with committee

28 members, budget of $1.2 million for consultation

The B.C. NDP government has launched its long-promised project to create a poverty reduction plan with annual targets, announcing a 28-member advisory committee to gather input around the province.

Social Development Minister Shane Simpson announced that the committee is co-chaired by Vancouver-Kensington MLA Mable Elmore and Dawn Hemingway, chair of the social work department at the University of Northern B.C. Simpson said the committee has 28 members and a budget of $1.2 million to conduct forums and consultation across the province.

Social Development Minister Shane Simpson announced that the committee is co-chaired by Vancouver-Kensington MLA Mable Elmore and Dawn Hemingway, chair of the social work department at the University of Northern B.C. Simpson said the committee has 28 members and a budget of $1.8 million to conduct forums and consultation across the province.

The committee has a website at engage.gov.bc.ca/bcpovertyreduction and will gather input until March 2018.

The NDP government’s first move to tackle poverty was a $100-a-month increase to social assistance rates that took effect in September. Simpson other steps were removing fees for adult basic education and English language courses, and making post-secondary tuition free for young people coming out of B.C.’s foster care system.

Committee members include:

• Cheryl Casimir a member of the Ktunaxa Nation near Cranbrook and former director of treaty, lands and resources for the Ktunaxa Tribal Council

• Queenie Choo, CEO of SUCCESS, the largest non-profit social service organization in B.C.

• Trish Garner, an employee of the B.C. Poverty Reduction Coalition and a supporter of Raise the Rates, an an anti-poverty activist group in East Vancouver

• Wes Hewittt, executive director of the Port Alberni Shelter Society

• Murry Krause, a former city councillor in Prince George and past president of the Union of B.C. Municipalities

• Hillary Marks, a peer-support worker for the Greater Victoria Coalition to End Homelessness and a shelter worker at Our Place Society

• Rosanna McGregor, executive director of the Cariboo Friendship Society in Williams Lake

• John Millar, a retired physician and former vice-president of the Canadian Institute for Health Information

• Tabitha Naismith, a national board member at ACORN, the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now

• Stephanie Smith, president of the B.C. Government and Services Employees’ Union

• Stacey Tyers, a poverty law advocate and city councillor from Terrace

• Leslie Varley, a member of the Nisga’a Nation and former Indigenous health specialist at Provincial Health Services Authority

Just Posted

Province not doing enough for forestry sector, say Liberals

Although Minister of Forests says government working to diversify industry, rural economies

Local company Northern Homecraft wins big at Northern B.C. awards

Vanderhoof company won in two categories for homes built in Fort St. James area

Stolen truck involved in fatal collision on Highway 16

Wednesday’s two-vehicle crash killed one man, 23, and injured two others

UPDATE: West Fraser to permanently reduce production in Quesnel, Fraser Lake

The move will affect 75 employees in Quesnel, 60 in Fraser Lake

Feedback sought on environmental impacts of New Gold’s proposed Blackwater Mine

Public is invited to comment in final round of consultation

Trudeau offers to help Pacific islands face climate change impact

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau met with the leaders from the Pacific island nations on Saturday during the APEC Summit in Papua New Guinea

Canadian military’s template for perfect recruits outdated: Vance

Gen. Jonathan Vance, the chief of defence staff says that the military has to change because the very nature of warfare is changing, particularly when it comes to cyber-warfare

‘Toxic’ chosen as the Word of the Year by Oxford Dictionaries

Other top contenders for 2018 include ‘gaslighting’ and ‘techlash’

RCMP bust illegal B.C. cannabis lab

Marijuana may be legal but altering it using chemicals violates the Cannabis Act

Canada defeats Germany 29-10 in repechage, moves step closer to Rugby World Cup

Hong Kong needs a bonus-point win over Canada — scoring four or more tries — while denying the Canadians a bonus point

Avalanche Canada in desperate need of funding

The organization provides avalanche forecasting for an area larger than the United Kingdom

Quesnel fed up with detour, urges Ottawa to speed up road repair

West Fraser Road has been on detour since spring 2018, with no plans to repair washout until 2020

5 B.C. cities break temperature records

Parts of B.C. remain warm, at 10 C, while others feeling chilly

B.C. teacher’s Amazing Race takes students on Canada-wide adventure

Agassiz high school students say they had the experience of a life time

Most Read