- Premier of British Columbia
- Premier of British Columbia
Save the Sled Dog: Reform British Columbia's Anti-Cruelty to Animals Law
UPDATE 04/07/11: The government-appointed task force has submitted recommendations that align with our requests to reform B.C.'s Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act. Premier Clark has stated that the government will act on every recommendation, giving B.C. the strongest anti-cruelty laws in Canada. Now is the time to keep the pressure on to make sure the recommendations are enacted. The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act is overseen by the Ministry of Agriculture and is an alarmingly ambiguous piece of legislation. Some of the law dates back over 100 years. Dogs and cats are defined strictly as property and there is no regulation in the act addressing businesses that work with animals such as sled dog companies. Without this regulation, a place of business cannot be shut down for acts of cruelty against animals. This legislation is clearly in place only to protect the rights of owners with “animal property”, not the rights of animals. A recent article by the Vancouver Sun revealed that the Howling Dog Tours manager who killed the dogs tried to contact the BC SPCA for help on two occasions. The BC SPCA didn’t investigate the business and turned down the request to shelter the dogs, claiming the dogs were not adoptable. A task force has been assembled by BC Premier Gordon Campbell to do a thorough investigation of this case. The outcome of their findings is to be reforms to the BC Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act. We must put a stop to animal cruelty by throwing our voices behind new legislation that regulates the roles of all animal welfare stakeholders and closes the loopholes that fail our animals. The BC SPCA and all animal shelters in British Columbia need to be regulated to follow a “rescue and save” plan, not a “seize and kill” plan. Premier Campbell’s task force will be reporting to Agriculture Minister Ben Stewart with recommendations for reformed legislation by March 25th, 2011. Let’s raise our voices loud and clear for the Whistler 100 to ensure the task force's recommendiations are in favor of animal welfare. There's needs to be real change to the Act and we must pull together and demand that change. “The question is not, Can they reason? Nor Can they talk, but Can they suffer? ~ English philosopher, Jeremy Bentham Visit us at www.isfoundation.com
We the people of British Columbia urge and expect that you solve the present crisis and let our schools open by agreeing to arbitration.
We disagree with the position that funding for class size and composition not be part of bargaining but for now settle all else and then continue negotiating. Special education students or any type of learner can’t be blamed for the present underfunding we are facing in our schools. Teachers can’t be blamed and have shown flexibility and initiative to find a settlement. We want more supports for our special needs students as soon as possible. The problem is not with our special needs children and how to service them, as government continues to imply and muddles the waters but with the chronic erosion in funding impacting all classrooms. There has been a 12 year struggle to regain the funding that was taken away from all students resulting in unworkable learning and teaching conditions. Class size, composition and ratios to specialist workloads have worked well before government took that language away in 2002. Matching need with service is the best way to guarantee support for students and allow the classroom teacher to focus on all children. Schools require resource, learning assistance and integration teachers, psychologists, counselors, librarians, speech and language pathologists, English language teachers, music and drama teachers, Educational Assistants etc. to provide excellent and timely service to students. Twice the courts found government wrong and ordered it to make amends and return that language. Now government continues to impose preconditions and not moving their position when teachers are. This is unacceptable to us as students, parents, teachers and taxpaying citizens. We all want schools to open as soon as possible. We demand that government lift the stumbling block to mediation (E80) which is that teachers sign away what they won in the courts. We urgently expect government to agree to binding arbitration and support public education, the cornerstone of our democratic society and future prosperity.
STOP THE TIME CHANGE IN BRITISH COLUMBIA
Twice a year, in B.C. and in most parts of Canada, Canadians join with approximately 76 other countries around the world and practice Daylight Saving Time (DST). We would like to stop this practice and remain on one time all year long. Preferably staying on DST all year long https://www.facebook.com/stoptimechangeinBC Our Goal is to reach 30,000 signatures on this petition to take this to the BC government and lobby for BC to remain on DST. Our original goal was 10,000 signatures (which we reached in early Nov 2015) but in meetings with Honorable Ministers Terry Lake (Health) and Todd Stone (Transportation) they suggested we have at least 30,000 on the petition. In 2007, the B.C. government received 4300 submissions from businesses, individuals and organizations and conducted a 4 week public consultation on expanding DST by an extra 3 weeks every year in order to align with the U.S. and other jurisdictions. The finally tally showed that 92 percent of respondents favoured DST and the extra hour of daylight during the evening hours. In addition, eleven chambers of commerce wrote submissions in support of expanding DST. Since 2007, the clocks have moved forward on the second Sunday in March, and then moved back on first Sunday of November. The primary goal of Daylight Saving Time is to conserve energy but whether DST actually saves energy is unclear and there are many contradictory studies. There are, however, even more studies that tell us that the change itself can cause accidents, injuries and even deaths. Many of these issues are related to sleep pattern change that the biennial shift mandates. Background There is a growing collection of evidence to show that the biennial time change has plenty of unintended consequences. In his 1996 book, Sleep Thieves, Dr. Stanley Coren, from the University of British Columbia wrote “that as a society we are increasingly sleep-deprived”. In a letter to the editor in the New England Journal of Medicine, in the same year, Coren wrote, “it is becoming clear that insufficient sleep and disrupted circadian rhythms are a major health problem”. Using data from the Canadian Ministry of Transport from 1991 and 1992, Coren coded all the data and found the loss of just one hour’s sleep during the shift to DST in the spring increased the number of traffic accidents by 8 percent. In the fall, when Canadians get an hour more of sleep, the number of traffic accidents decreased by a similar amount. Major disasters such as the Exxon Valdez, the Challenger Explosion and the nuclear accident at Chernobyl are all linked to sleep deprivation. The costs of sleep-related accidents, as reported for the year 1988, to the National Commission on Sleep Disorders Research in the U.S. was in excess of $56 billion and included almost 25,000 deaths and 2.5 million serious injuries. A 2009 study reported in the Journal of Applied Psychology also found that that the lost hour led to more frequent and more severe injuries among minors. Researchers looked at the Mondays following the time shift over a 23 year period between 1983 and 2006 and found 3.6 more injuries on time shift days and a 68 percent increase in lost work days. The link between heart attacks and the spring time shift to DST has been well documented and the evidence is convincing. The best known study comes from Sweden where researchers found a 5 percent increase in heart attacks in the three days following the spring time shift. A lower percentage increase was found during the fall back shift. The suspected cause of the increases is the disruption of sleep patterns and biological rhythms. Moving clocks forward and backward every year in an ever increasing complex digital world is not without consequences either. Air traffic schedules, train schedules, public transport schedules all must be changed biennially. It complicates timekeeping, disrupts meetings and even livestock have been shown to have trouble adjusting to new routines. Moving the hours around twice a year is a complex matter. Although it was originally brought forward by Benjamin Franklin as a way to conserve energy and that remains its primary purpose to this day, there is in fact no consistent evidence to show it is helping us. There is on the other hand, plenty of evidence to show that constantly shifting back and forth does harm.
Tell Sister State, Gyeonggi Province, South Korea, That We’re Opposed to the Torture and Consumption of Dogs and Cats.
Governor Terry McAuliffe of Virgina, Governor Rick Scott of Florida, Governor Gary Herbert of Utah, Premier Christy Clark of British Columbia(Canada) and Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk of Queensland(Australia): Tell Sister State, Gyeonggi Province, South Korea, That We’re Opposed to the Torture and Consumption of Dogs and Cats. Gyeonggi Province of South Korea became a sister state with the U.S. states of Utah in 1983, Virginia in 1997, and Florida in 2000, and Queensland, Australia in 1997 and British Columbia, Canada in 2008. This, despite the fact that Gyeonggi Province, South Korea is responsible for a horrendous dog and cat meat trade. In South Korea, home to global companies such as Hyundai, Kia, Samsung, LG, Daewoo, SK, and POSCO, an estimated 2.5 million dogs are tortured and slaughtered every year because of the greed of dog eaters and the dog meat industry. One of the provinces that supports the illegal mass breeding and brutal slaughter of dogs for human consumption is Gyeonggi Province. Have you ever wondered what Hell is like? Click HERE to watch undercover video from the Moran Dog Meat Market in Seongnam, Gyeonggi. There are no words to describe the daily horror of this “Hell On Earth.” And there are so many markets like this all around Gyeonggi Province. Countless dog farms and slaughterhouses are scattered throughout Gyeonggi Province and they truly are hell on earth for the defenseless dogs suffering there. Man’s best friend exists for their entire lives in squalid, feces encrusted raised wire cages in utter misery only to be slaughtered in the most horrific of ways – by electrocution, a hammer blow to the neck, being hung or beaten, bleeding to death from a slashed throat, being burned to death from a blowtorch, or thrown into a vat of boiling water while still alive. Dogs and puppies died of diseases are tossed away like garbage, left in front of cages to rot while the momma dogs watch in terror and despair. Seongnam, Suwon, Poc heon, Goyang(Ilsan), Gimpo, In cheon, Namyangju, Anseong, Uij eongbu; and on goes the list of cities in Gyeonggi Province where these atrocities are perpetrated. There are laws in South Korea against selling dogs and cats for consumption yet these laws are blatantly ignored. Please watch this undercover video by animal rights activists in South Korea: http://youtu.be/ 3uR8R8Mu70Q Please inform Gyeonggi Province Governor Kyung-Pil Nam that citizens of your state and their friends insist that they issue an official document mandating that the following existing laws be enforced: Livestock Product Sanitary Control Act, Article 2, Item 1 which governs the raising, slaughter and disposal of livestock and the processing, distribution and inspection of livestock products, does not categorize dogs as livestock that can be processed as food. Therefore this makes the dog meat industry technically illegal. Food Sanitation Act, Article 7, Clause 1, Korean Food Standards Codex specified by the Food and Drug Administration, does not include dogs in the list of raw materials that can be processed and cooked as food, therefore making raising and slaughtering dogs for consumption illegal. Animal Protection Act: ARTICLE 3. BASIC PRINCIPLES FOR PROTECTION OF ANIMALS Each person shall endeavor to observe the following principles in raising, caring for, or protecting an animal: 1. Each person shall ensure that an animal maintains its natural behavior and original physical shape to live an ordinary life; 2. Each person shall ensure that an animal does not suffer from thirst, hunger, or malnutrition; Each person shall ensure that an animal is free to express normal behavior without experiencing discomfort; 4. Each person shall ensure that an animal is free from pain, injury, and disease; 5. Each person shall ensure that an animal is free from fear and distress. ARTICLE 8. PROHIBITION OF ANIMAL ABUSE ① No one shall commit the following acts toward animals: 1. Act of killing by brutal methods, such as hanging 2. Act of Killing in public or in another animal’s presence ③ No one shall commit the following acts toward abandoned or abused animals: 1. Act of capture and sell or kill. 2. Act of trade or purchase knowing that the animals are abandoned or abused. ARTICLE 9. ANIMAL TRANSPORTATION ① Anyone transporting an animal that has been selected by decree from the Ministry for Food, Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries must make an effort to abide by the following: 1. Ensure that the animals are properly fed, watered and drive carefully so that animals are not shocked or harmed from sudden departures or stops. 2. The vehicle used for transportation must be built to prevent any harm during transportation and to minimize any pain due to poor ventilation or sudden changes in temperature, etc. 4. Avoid any possible injuries while moving an animal and minimize any pain or discomfort, such as sudden changes in body temperature or difficulty in breathing. ARTICLE 46. PUNISHMENT ① Anyone who violates Article 8, Clause 1 through 3 shall be punished with up to one year in prison or a maximum fine of 10 million Korean won ($7,000 USD). Ministry of Environment's Conservation of Water Quality and Ecosystem Act, Article 15 Clause 1 Item 2 and Article 78 Item 3, the act of discharging excrement, livestock waste water, animal carcass, waste materials or sludge into public water is punishable by up to one year in prison or a maximum fine of 10 million Korean won ($7,000 USD). Livestock Safety Management Act, slaughterhouses are only authorized to slaughter animals they are registered to handle. No slaughterhouse is registered to slaughter dogs because dogs are not subject to slaughter under this law. We believe these demands are in line with the goal of sister states to establish friendly communications in the areas of tourism, commerce, cultural exchange and public health. International and Korean media coverage of the brutal dog and cat meat trade in South Korea has stained Gyeonggi Province, South Korea’s image and severely tarnished your state’s sister state relationship. The time to end this tragedy is now. The favor of your reply is requested. Thank you for taking swift action! PS: Click here to find more ways to contact the governors of Gyeonggi Province's Sister States. http://koreandogs. org/contact-governors-of- gyeonggido-sister-states It's very quick and simple. http://koreandogs. org/
Fund Orkambi for those fighting Cystic Fibrosis
Dear Ms. Clark and Ms. Wynne, Imagine learning that you had a fatal disease. Then imagine that a new treatment, capable of dramatically improving and extending your quality of life existed, but was inaccessible to you simply because of the price tag. That is what is happening today to thousands of Canadians afflicted with Cystic Fibrosis. One of those Canadians is our daughter Lucy. Lucy is a beautiful, smart, funny, 4 year old who loves to skip, dance and sing. She has Cystic Fibrosis, and tragically without the development of a cure she will eventually die from her condition. Incredibly, there is a drug called Orkambi that can dramatically improve the quality of life for those affected with her same condition. This drug is approved by Health Canada but unfortunately is not on the list of drugs that are covered under the provincial health plan of either province. This is unacceptable. We, the undersigned, immediately call upon the Governments of BC and Ontario to enter into negotiation with the maker of Orkambi, Vertex Pharmaceuticals, to bring the drug onto the provincial health plan. Thank you in advance for your leadership in this area. Lucy and all Canadians impacted by Cystic Fibrosis thank you! Sincerely, Aaron Mittler, Mary Sanagan, Molly & Lucy Mittler, and supporters.
Ban Battery Cages in Canada
UPDATE: Our new official House of Commons petition is being presented in Parliament! This is our golden to reach the Government. Sign it here: https://petitions.parl.gc.ca/en/Petition/Sign/e-766 Please sign this petition to tell the House of Commons and the Premiers of Canada to bring necessary change for hens being legally abused across our country. In Canada over 90% of egg-laying hens are being trapped in these small cramped “battery” cages their entire lives. When chickens are "living" in these cruel conditions they are unable to perform natural behaviours such as nesting, perching, dust bathing, stretching their wings or even walking around. On average each hen is given less space than a standard sheet of printed paper. Although this already is enough reasons to ban this inhumane practice, battery cages eggs also carry serious food safety risks. A study by the European Food Safety Agency, which analyzed data from 5,000 egg farms in over 20 countries found that eggs from battery hens were twenty-five times more likely to carry salmonella infection than uncaged free run hens! This practice is cruel and unsafe for consumers, which is why it must be banned and forgotten in all of Canada. Below you will find our letter that you send when signing this petition, to the Prime Minister, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, all party leaders in the House of Commons and all Provincial and Territorial Premiers. Dear Justin Trudeau, Lawrence MacAulay, Rona Ambrose, Tom Mulcair, Elizabeth May, Rhéal Fortin, Kathleen Wynne, Christy Clark, Philippe Couillard, Stephen McNeil, Brian Gallant, Brian Pallister, Wade MacLauchlan, Brad Wall, Rachel Notley, Dwight Ball, Bob McLeod, Darrell Pasloski, Peter Taptuna We would first off like to thank you for dedicating your time and effort to our country. We know that as officials elected by the citizens of Canada, you want to help and work for Canadians. The issue of most importance to myself and the Canadians signing the petition to "Ban Battery Cages in Canada" is no other than the issue of battery cages. According to the Canadian Coalition for Farm Animals, over 90% of egg laying hens in Canada are living in battery cages. These are tiny wire cages that chickens live in their entire lives. This not only damages chickens physically, but mentally as well, and studies show battery caged eggs to provide frightening food safety risks for consumers. Battery cages have been used on animals for decades and it is shameful that this inhumane practice continues. When chickens are put in battery cages for their entire lives, they act extremely unusual. Since chickens often die because of the terrible conditions in these cages, it’s not uncommon to find them cannibalizing other chickens. Chickens are smart and social animals that are almost never found doing this when living in regular conditions. According to farm sanctuary, chickens are outperforming dogs and cats on many tests of advanced cognition. The emotional intelligence of chickens is outstanding and far better than we ever thought so. But it’s not just chickens minds that are destroyed in these cages, it’s their bodies too. Chickens suffer feather loss and skin damage due to constant rubbing against the cage and other chickens. Their muscles and bones waste away due to lack of use, and in some cases, their skeletal systems become so weak that their spinal cords deteriorate and they become paralyzed; the animals then die from dehydration. This sad and awful situation is so common that the industry actually has a term for it, “cage fatigue”, and endless investigations show the remaining living birds forced to stand on the rotting, mummified bodies of their cage-mates. And there are even more negative effects on the chickens living in these cages. Since each hen on average is given less space than a standard piece of printed paper (94 square inches), they are unable to stretch their wings or even walk around. They are also neglected of other natural behaviours such as nesting, perching and dustbathing. These are activities that are important to them. To make it even worse for these hens, instead of dust bathing, they are forced to bathe in urine and feces that fall onto them from the hens in cages stacked above. The list of reasons to end this form of farming go on and on. Aside from the disgusting conditions these hens are force to live in, there are terrifying food safety risks to the consumers of battery caged eggs as well. A study by the European Food Safety Agency, which analyzed data from 5,000 egg farms in over 20 countries found that eggs from battery hens were twenty-five times more likely to carry salmonella infection than uncaged free run hens! Along with this, keeping hens in small cramped cages and not allowing them to perform natural behaviors causes exponential stress for these hens. When hens are constantly undergoing considerable stress, they can be more susceptible to diseases and more infectious. Battery cages are providing disgustingly cruel conditions for the hens that produce our food, and terrifying food safety risks to the consumers that eat these eggs. It is up to the the elected Ministers, Federal Leaders and Provincial and Territorial Premiers of our country to create the necessary change for this issue. We must move into the 21st century and ban the practice of battery cages in our egg industry. In conclusion, as concerned citizens of Canada we say to the elected officials working for us: For the sake of our animals, and our people, do the right thing. Thank you.
Hands off BC's Agricultural Land Commission
Note: This petition was started in 2014 and will remain open until victory can be declared. Madam Premier: During last year's provincial election campaign, the BC Liberal party did not campaign on plans to modify or scrap the Agricultural Land Commission. Search the party's platform for Agricultural Land Commission and the result is clear: “no match found.” Your party's response to a specific question on the Agricultural Land Commission (posed by Metro Vancouver) during the campaign didn't even hint at the plans now under consideration by your government. You have no mandate to make the changes that were detailed in cabinet documents released – not by your government but by the Globe and Mail – and we ask that you immediately withdraw them from consideration.
Australians: Tell the BC Government to Ban Grizzly Bear Trophy Hunting
On May 9th, 2017, British Columbians will vote in a provincial election. On this day, those voters have a brilliant chance to stop the trophy hunting of grizzly bears in BC, as the New Democratic Party has vowed to end the hunt if elected. But the province's current party, the BC Liberals have further stated their support for this hunt despite the polls, the science and the ethics pointing to the brutal nature of killing grizzly bears for sport. It has recently been proven that grizzly bear viewing is up to 12 times more profitable to the province that bear hunting and according to Destination BC's data, Australians are the 4th most numerous nationality to visit the province with over 20,000 of us entering British Columbia in January of 2017. Therefore, us Aussies have the power to stand up for bears. We have the power to tell Christy Clarke and the BC Liberals that tourism to their province will be boycotted until the hunt is ended. Please, take a moment to sign this petition and to vow that you will boycott bringing our Australian tourist dollars to British Columbia until grizzly bears are legally protected from the greedy government and their horrible killing of these magnificent animals.
Keep Vancouver Skytrains open until 3:10 am on weekends
Currently, Metro Vancouver has 2.464 million residence. Vancouver is one of the only major metropolitan cities who has their last trains depart early as 1:25 am on weekends. All of the last Sky-trains leave waterfront before 1:25 am on weekends despite clubs and bars running until 3 am. 1:25 am for a last skytrain is not late enough for many people trying to get around this city. With expensive cab rides many choose to drive home drunk. Others take the dreaded night bus. Voting for this petition is for extending the last skytrain (from water front) time to 3:10 am. The city would have many benefits if this was implemented: This will reduce the amount of drunk drivers. Taxis to anyone coming home past 29th ave from downtown can cost easily upward from 20$. Taxing to Surrey can cost over 60$. Naturally people will try to avoid paying this even if that means driving home drunk. Giving people the option to sky train home will reduce the amount of drunk drivers. People will be able to get home safer and easier. They will be able to avoid the dreaded night bus. Also the reduced amount of drunk driver makes the streets safer. More people will be encouraged to take public transit. This will help the downtown social scene flourish. When coming home at night becomes easy and accessible people will go out more. More people out will help businesses downtown and around the city. Having the last trains leave waterfront at 3:10 am on weekends will greatly benefit the city. This petition is not asking for much, the time the skytrains open and close can stay the same on week days. We ask for less than two extra hours, two times a week of skytrain activity. This is not much, for the benefits that the 3:10 am last train will bring. This petition is for translink or any governing body that has the power to influence translink. For more info on skytrain times visit the link. Please, tell use how changing the skytrain time on weekends to 3:10am will benefit you or how you? Join the petition facebook group at: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1484980648479703/ See this link for more info on time schedules http://tripplanning.translink.ca/hiwire?.a=iScheduleLookupSearch&LineName=999&LineAbbr=999
Raise social assistance rates in BC
$610/month. That’s how much someone on social assistance is expected to live on in BC. BC has the highest poverty rate in all of Canada. Welfare rates have not been raised in since 2007. Meanwhile, the BC government has given massive tax cuts to the province's wealthiest people and most-profitable corporations, which has slashed government revenue dramatically. Low welfare rates are a poverty trap. A budget of $610/month leaves $21/week for food and virtually nothing for what people need to find jobs and get out of poverty: hygiene, clothing, and transport. Poverty costs BC over $8 billion a year. It’s time for the government of BC to raise welfare rates. We're a group of people and organizations who have joined together under the banner of the "Raise the Rates" coalition. We need to tell the government that the people across BC stand behind us. We want the BC government to ACT NOW and increase income assistance to the Market Basket Measure. The Market Basket Measure (MBM) is a measure of how much disposable income people need to meet basic needs. The MBM for Vancouver is $1569 and the MBC for rural BC is $1517. Low welfare rates cost us more – in human lives and money – than raising social assistance to a liveable amount. To find out more: www.raisetherates.org To watch a short video on raising the welfare rates: http://welfarefoodchallenge.org/category/2013-welfare-food-challenge/2013-videos/