by Harvey Oberfeld
September the 8th, 2015
Premier Christy Clark was broadcast live on national tv Tuesday for a major announcement: how BC would help legitimate Syrian refugees who make it into Canada under an expedited clearance program.
She announced the BC government would spend $1 million to help process, settle and absorb an un-named number of refugee families that end up in this province.
It is NOT NEARLY enough.
Remember, we are not talking about illegal migrants: this is about REAL refugees trying to save their own and their families lives … fleeing bombings, beheadings, torture, starvation and all kinds of hatred, discrimination and suffering.
A million dollars to help save/develop human lives!
From a government that spent $11 million on a Bollywood party/movie festival? From a province that spent $3 million on an almost useless JobFest rock music debacle? From authorities who defended spending $35 million on a just a consultation process to discuss new ways to assist (not actually assist) aboriginal child welfare? And from a government that spent $15 million on a massive advertising program to tell us all how well the government is doing?
A million dollars from one of Canada’s wealthiest provinces? Less than it now takes to buy the average SINGLE-FAMILY home in Vancouver!
It is not enough!
Quebec has announced that province will triple its previously-established allocation and will spend an additional $29 million to welcome 3,600 refugees. In Toronto, the Catholic church has announced a plan to sponsor/bring in/take care of 100 families: estimated cost $3 million.
It all shows how small BC’s response to the crisis really is.
Important to note only Quebec has the Constitutional right to set its own immigration targets and limits: BC and other provinces can make requests, but ultimately it’s the federal government that establishes numbers and allocations.
Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s government has announced its intention to raise the number of allowed refugees to 20,000; NDP Leader Tom Mulcair has urged Canada taken in 10,000; and Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau says Canada could absorb 25,000.
And remember again, these would be legitimate refugees …desperately looking for somewhere safe to start new lives.
At what cost? The Liberal plan estimates the cost of processing, transporting and absorbing 25,000 at about $100 million.
So Clark’s message that BC will spend $1 million sends a message: we don’t want very many.
Unless, of course, they promise to hold a week-long dance festival just before the next provincial election and invite the Premier and her candidates to every photo-op.
I agree with Harper’s stance,this unfortunately will be a non story in about a week as we move on to something else,we have short attention spans.
While I sympathize with the refugees plight, asking the BC Liberals to do anything is stupid.
The gang in Victoria can’t keep our own kids out of poverty or keep them alive. They are really good at taking disadvantaged to court.
So, Harv Oberfeld is surprised that the BC Government is cheap when helping refugees.
Really ? Have you been hiding under a rock, Harv !
This B.C. government will go down in history as the most selfish, politically opportunistic bunch in recent modern history.
It’s also amazing who in the conventional media have cheerleaded this government on to victory.
The whole Clark government is a ruse.
From the deliberate hiding of government emails for official business using their own personal emails, to the Ministers of each portfolio with bottomless, taxpayer funded, credit cards to enjoy the good life with, to the outrageous salaries and perks given to those in Clark’s inner circle, while the patronage wagon reveals outrageous spending behind the backs of the taxpayers.
Deceitful, lying bastards, the whole lot of them.
One million bucks will allow for some 30 to 40 refugee families to settle here in British Columbia. And that’s JUST for one year, only !
Studies show it costs about 29,000 a year to support a full family of four, per family. Plus, the sponsor needs to find five other people to help with the sponsorship.
I imagine that the churches and the social service organizations in each part of the Province will be forced to find homes and food for these refugees after the government money runs out, as the Ministry of Social Development is a rather cruel ministry who rather enjoys seeing people starve and put out on the streets.
Bottom line ? The BC Government is a government without a heart.
Imagine this sleazy politician (Shifty Clark) who could not even get elected in her own Point Gray riding, had to come to the Okanagan for a “safe seat” once held by a former prominent winery owner (Ben Stewart).
Ben Stewart got rewarded, all right, with a plum patronage job in the Far East. But did he really need the work ? He already had his wine business.
Meanwhile, always in cheapdome mode when it comes to the poorest in this province.
The real deal: still fighting the election results! Sad …
We need to proceed with caution in bringing in refugees. Who is going to look at the activities of each refugee from countries like Syria and Iraq? How many of these people took part in the violence that has plagued that region? The vast majority of refugees want a better life for their families but I have no doubt there are terrorists amongst the hundreds of thousands of people heading to Europe and North America.
I happen to live in Christy Clark’s riding, so we see the lack of respect much more closely than others.
Since the election, the tendency for Ms clark to avoid the West Kelowna riding at all costs, (unless government handouts are announced), no real emotional stake shown in the Okanagan, etc.
Just used the area to get elected !
After her term of office has ended, the Premier will likely return back to the Lower Mainland to live with the rest of you.
At least with the Bennett’s, they retired here, after their political careers finished.
With Ms. Clark, she will keep her distance from others, so obviously nobody can get too close to her !
The vast majority of refugees want a better life for their families but I have no doubt there are terrorists amongst the hundreds of thousands of people heading to Europe and North America.
Then, that’s why we have CSIS and the RCMP to screen out terrorists. Let those agencies do their jobs, but to assume that all refugees are terrorists is simply unfair.
Btw, the Conservative govt. makes sure than all immigrants are being screened for ISIS links. Just go to the Immigration Canada website and see the larger than life notice about ISIS at the bottom of the page.
Why not just say that all right winged Conservatives think people of the Islamic faith are terrorists ? Then, at least you would have nothing to hide ?
I don’t assume all refugees are terrorists. 99 percent of them just want a better life in a peaceful country. But we would be naïve to think 100 percent of the refugees are good people. How are CSIS and the RCMP going to go after terrorists when the Syrian and Iraqi governments can’t police their own countries? We may never really know who is entering Canada.
You also got my political affiliation wrong. I am a Liberal with a practical view of the world. It would be dishonest of me to look at what is going on in the middle east and assume that everyone leaving the region has good intentions. We have seen too many psychopaths kill innocent people around the world to ignore the problem of religious fundamentalism.
So Harvey.. do you or don’t want the refugees here???
This article makes it sound like your mad the Liberals aren’t doing enough.. .. but your previous stand on this says something else… stop flip flopping…
or better yet — get a job in media again — share with the masses!!
Chris 10:52 am:
I never said that all refugees are good people or even Liberals.