Social Work Week
Minister of Children and Family Development Stephanie Cadieux has issued the following statement in recognition of Social Work Week in British Columbia, March 12-18, 2017:
“This is Social Work Week in B.C. and National Social Work Month, a time to recognize and honour the courage shown each day by MCFD social workers, clinicians and other front-line staff who have some of the toughest jobs in the province – supporting and protecting vulnerable families and children.
” ‘One person can make a difference and everyone should try.’ That quote from former United States president John F. Kennedy is a fitting one to describe what social workers do each and every day. During difficult circumstances they strive to do their best and think outside the box to make a lasting difference in the lives of children and families.
“The work of social workers can make headlines when things do not go well. Unfortunately, they often do not get recognition for all of the amazing things they help their clients achieve on a daily basis.
“During social worker week, it’s my pleasure to shine a light on some of their efforts and triumphs. Stories like Karen Zilke’s, a Vancouver social worker who recently won an award from the charity Children of the Street, for her work helping sexually exploited youth in a unique partnership with the Vancouver Police in the Downtown East Side. Read Karen’s story here: https://news.gov.bc.ca/14147
“She is just one of the more than 2,500 social workers in B.C. who make a difference by giving families a sense of hope. Social workers by their very nature are adaptable and creative thinkers. They have to be. There is no one size fits solutions in their line of work. What they often need most is more time.
“So to help social workers and other front-line staff do their jobs, we’re putting extra supports in place. This includes hiring more administrative staff so social workers can spend less time doing paperwork and answering phones and more time working directly with families.
We’re also providing pay incentives to attract front-line staff to hard-to-recruit communities. Ministry social workers in designated rural or remote regions will receive an additional $3,000 to $6,000 per year.
“My sincerest appreciation goes out to social workers this week and throughout the year. On behalf of the Province and all British Columbians, thank you for doing the work you do every day and for making a difference.”
To read the 2017 Social Work Week Proclamation, please visit: http://www.bclaws.ca/civix/document/id/proclamations/proclamations/SocWrkWk2017
BC Teachers Vote
With 21,156 BC Teachers’ Federation members participating, 98.4% voted in favour of ratifying the agreement to implement their restored collective agreement language. The agreement will see all the substantive working conditions that were unconstitutionally stripped from teachers’ collective agreements restored.
“With this vote, BC schools are finally on the verge of having better working and learning conditions back in place,” said BCTF President Glen Hansman. “With our restored language in effect, BC schools, students, and teachers will see significant improvements in class sizes, support levels for children with special needs, and access to specialist teachers this September.
The unconstitutional stripping of our collective agreement never should have happened in the first place, and a whole generation of students have gone without the frontline service they ought to have had during the entirety of their K-12 experience, but we are proud that we’re able to turn our Supreme Court of Canada victory into positive change so quickly. We can never forget, though, what happened.
“I want to thank all of our BCTF members for their tenacity and solidarity over the last 15 years. By sticking together and acting as outspoken advocates for our rights and our students’ education, we are finally going to see meaningful improvements in our schools. Thank you as well to parents who have supported us all these years.”
Hansman said the focus will now shift to the collective agreement-based school staffing processes that will begin later this month as well as holding the government accountable for its commitment to fully fund all the costs.
“The government stated it will fully fund the costs of implementing this agreement,” said Hansman. “All eyes will be on the BC Liberal government this March and April to ensure the necessary funds materialize. It’s also important to note that our restored language does not solve many of the other urgent funding pressures facing school districts. The government needs to step up and properly address overcrowding in many of our districts, the lack of resources for the revised curriculum, and all of the seismically unsafe schools across the province.”
Kidney Disease Screening
One thousand high-risk British Columbians will be screened for chronic kidney disease, thanks to $200,000 in funding to the Kidney Foundation of Canada, BC & Yukon Branch.
“Early detection is essential to reducing the potentially life-threatening effects of kidney disease,” said Shuswap MLA Greg Kyllo, who made the announcement on behalf of Health Minister Terry Lake yesterday on World Kidney Day. “Targeted screening in communities throughout B.C. will help identify those who may have compromised kidney function, and provide them with information and tools to make healthy lifestyle changes.”
The BC & Yukon Branch of the Kidney Foundation will hold 25 screening events over 18 months in communities throughout B.C., working with community organizations who serve high-risk populations for kidney disease. At-risk populations include people who:
* Are of Asian, Pacific Islanders, African, South Asian or Aboriginal descent,
* Have diabetes, high blood pressure, or cardio vascular disease; and/or
* Have a family history of chronic kidney disease.
Each participant will discuss their results immediately with a registered nurse, and those with compromised kidney function will be encouraged to connect with their family doctor.
“It is estimated one in 10 British Columbians has some form of kidney disease, but because early stages of the disease are rarely accompanied by symptoms, many people don’t realize they have it,” said Pia Schindler, executive director, BC & Yukon Branch of the Kidney Foundation of Canada. “Although there is no cure for chronic kidney disease, a healthy lifestyle and early interventions can go a long way towards preventing the need for dialysis or transplant.”
This year’s World Kidney Day focused on kidney disease and obesity. People who struggle with obesity are more likely to develop kidney disease. Obesity increases the risk of developing diseases such as diabetes and high blood pressure, the two leading causes of chronic kidney disease. A healthy lifestyle will decrease the risk of developing obesity and chronic kidney disease.
To help British Columbians make healthier choices, Healthy Families BC is an online resource for health and wellness information. From healthy eating tips, to programs and supports to become more physically active, Healthy Families BC helps British Columbians to better manage their own health and reduce chronic disease.
Stop Domestic Abuse
How do you stop the potential for domestic abuse in its tracks – before a perpetrator strikes, victims go into hiding, charges are laid or a family breaks down?
That’s the question at the centre of Supporting Healthy Relationships. Developed to address a commitment in the Provincial Domestic Violence Plan, the Supporting Healthy Relationship project will bring together top B.C. service providers, evaluators and other experts. The grants announced today will help support community organizations as they provide programming for perpetrators of domestic violence – before they become involved with the criminal justice system.
Over the past two years, ministry staff has been examining what works best to prevent and stop domestic violence. This work involved consulting front-line service providers, plus reviewing relevant academic research.
The Province identified 11 not-for-profit community organizations that deliver domestic violence prevention/intervention programming to perpetrators prior to the charge, conviction or sentencing stage of the criminal justice process. Each group is receiving $60,000 to:
* Enhance and/or expand its existing programming – for example, by serving more participants, developing new topics or enhancing support to victims.
* Deliver its programming over 18 months – concluding by Aug. 31, 2018, during which an evaluation will take place.
* Participate in formal evaluation activities, which will examine changes in participants’ behaviour and attitudes about domestic violence, as well as victim-related outcomes. Dr. Jennifer Wong of Simon Fraser University’s school of criminology will lead the evaluation team, in partnership with the Ending Violence Association of B.C. (EVA BC).
* Join in a “community of practice” with other grant recipients, government partners and the evaluation team. This community of practice will promote collaboration, knowledge-sharing and improved practices and outcomes among the 11 funded organizations.
Minister of Agriculture and Kelowna-Lake Country MLA Norm Letnick is pleased to announce 20 successful Buy Local Partnerships totaling over $770,000 in a number of cities around the province including two here in Kelowna.
The Buy Local program has received $8 million of BC government funding since 2012 to increase sales of locally grown and processed agrifood and seafood products within the province and is set to receive an additional $2 million a year over the next 3 years as part of the Balanced Budget 2017 to invest in the Buy Local program.
Locally, Little Creek Dressing is receiving $17,325 to increase sales and bring the products of Little Creek Dressing to a wider audience and differentiate it as a local, high quality dressing by sampling products, print advertising, in-store displays, promotional hand-outs and upgrading the website.
Sun-Rype Products Ltd. is receiving $70,000 to increase sales and brand awareness for the Rider Cider hard cider with tribute ad, developing packaging, creating point of sale materials for the 70th Anniversary campaign and Rider Cider promotions.
“The buy local program plays a significant role in encouraging British Colombians to purchase local BC agriculture products which helps strengthen our provinces food security” says Agriculture Minister Norm Letnick.
The BC Government’s Agrifood and Seafood Strategic Growth Plan supports the building of domestic markets and maintaining a secure food supply. The Plan is a component of the BC Jobs Plan, and the roadmap to leading the agrifoods sector to becoming a $15-billion-a-year industry by 2020.
From Deuce Coupes to classic Chevrolet Camaros – starting this summer, ICBC’s collector vehicle program will now accept a wider range of modified vehicles, including those from the “muscle car” era.
If you own a car or truck that was built in 1974 or earlier, now is your chance to join ICBC’s collector vehicle program. Starting March 30, 2017, ICBC will begin accepting applications for specialty cars and trucks up to and including model year 1974. Up until now, the cut-off for the program was vehicles built in 1958 or earlier.
“We want to see the collector car industry in B.C. continue to thrive and evolve with the times,” said Todd Stone, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure. “We are proud to work with our partners at ICBC and the Specialty Vehicle Association of BC to expand this popular program to bring in the eye-catching vehicles from the muscle car era.”
“Many collector vehicle owners are from rural parts of B.C., and this opens up new opportunities for them to join the very popular collector vehicle program,” said Donna Barnett, Minister of State for Rural Economic Development, Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations. “This inclusion of more car eras helps to expand the horizons of the collector car industry in B.C., and we are happy to help facilitate this change.”
At the request of the Specialty Vehicle Association of BC (SVABC), the government worked with ICBC to make this expansion happen, to keep the program popular and sustainable for years to come.
The collector program has also expanded to include replica (non-original) vehicles resembling production built 1942 model year or earlier. Owners will be able to register the replica as it looks (for example, registering it as a 1937 Ford rather than 2014 Ubilt). As well, owners of actual 1942 and earlier vehicles will be able to make more modifications and still be eligible for the collector program.
“The collector vehicle program is incredibly popular with our customers,” said Mark Blucher, ICBC’s president and CEO. “It’s a real passion for many people to customize their vehicles, so we’re very pleased the expansion will allow us to offer the program to even more car enthusiasts.”
ICBC’s modified collector vehicle program was last changed over a decade ago. At that time, approximately 14,000 collector vehicles were registered or actively licenced and insured in B.C. In 2017, there are approximately 26,000 collector vehicles actively licenced and insured in B.C.
“These enhancements to the program are a great step forward for the vehicle enthusiasts of B.C. and the hobby. The SVABC began this quest in 2013 and we are delighted that it is coming to fruition, recognizing the forgotten replicas and incorporating a new genre of collector vehicle – the resto-mod,” said Bob Kelly, SVABC director. “A special thanks to Minister Stone for his willingness to listen to our proposal and for recognizing the importance of moving the collector plate program forward, and also to ICBC for working closely with us to implement the changes.”
To qualify for the collector vehicle program as a modified vehicle, it must meet the following requirements:
* Registered as a 1974 model or older,
* In excellent condition,
* Has been altered so that it resembles but is no longer identical in appearance to the original body,
* Has had one of the following components replaced or altered: chassis, engine and/or power train, suspension, steering and braking component.
To qualify for the collector vehicle program as a replica vehicle, it must meet the following requirements:
* Registered as a 1942 model or older,
* In excellent condition,
* Be identical to in appearance or resemble the original body by the original vehicle manufacturer
If your vehicle is approved, your collector plates will be sent to your Autoplan broker after June 30, 2017.
The Rockets beat Vancouver Giants 8-1 Friday…and beat the Victoria Royals 4-3 in overtime Saturday.