Working and Jobs in BC
There's some interesting thoughts in this article. What say all of you? http://t.co/y2zzCbJL
For those who want to avoid links, and just read:
Dear 90 per cent: I want you to join the Poor People’s Party of British Columbia. After all, you really don’t have a home in any existing political party. Poor people have to stick together and form a unified voting bloc. That’s the only way low- and middle- income folks can have a chance at the Canadian dream.
It’s about time somebody stood up for the 90 per cent who aren’t part of the wealthy in British Columbia, says Fazil Mihlar.
Why are most British Columbians faced with stagnant incomes? The 90 per cent of people in this category know the answer. But for the edification of the 10 per cent who are rich, don’t have a clue and/ or don’t care, I will explain. The single biggest factor behind the higher rates of morbidity and mortality among low- income British Columbians is the lack of “living wage” pay packets. A good income is, of course, dependent on a well- paying job. This is a statistical fact.
Living wage jobs are hard to come by in B. C. That’s because many elites in the political, environmental, labour, social and academic sphere have become so detached from economic reality that they are fighting hard against any project that will deliver well- paying jobs.
B. C. NDP leader Adrian Dix is not in favour of building Jumbo Glacier resort, a project that will see $ 1 billion in investment and create 750 permanent jobs in B. C. Federal NDP MP Nathan Cullen is opposed to building of the Enbridge Northern Gateway oil pipeline from Alberta’s oilsands to Kitimat, which will generate an estimated 4,100 person- years of employment during construction, 1,150 long- term jobs and $ 1.2 billion in tax revenue for the provincial coffers.
While the Liberal government under Premier Christy Clark is trying to secure high- paying jobs by pushing forward with an LNG terminal and several mines, the pace is still slow.
The environmental movement is against the copper- gold Prosperity Mine near Williams Lake, which would add $ 4.5 billion to our economy and 60,000 person- years of direct and indirect employment over its lifetime. Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson is against Kinder Morgan’s $ 5- billion existing pipeline expansion project. Other local politicians line up against expansion of Port Metro Vancouver, which directly and indirectly employs 129,500 Canadians, pays out $ 6.1 billion in wages and adds $ 10.5 billion to our gross domestic product.
Community activists are against the proposed shopping mall complex in Tsawwassen that could provide economic independence to aboriginal people. Some aboriginal leaders oppose building the BC Hydro Site C dam on the Peace River, which could generate 7,650 person- years of employment during construction and produce 35,000 direct and indirect jobs during its lifetime.
The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, a think- tank funded partly by labour unions, isn’t enthusiastic about gas extraction, not to mention mining. Considering these projects offer highly paid union jobs, this is a shocking attitude.
Unions are opposed to run- of- river independent power production, which generates good incomes in the hinterland and profit sharing for aboriginal communities. Academics, who have jobs for life mainly paid for by taxpayers, are against too many things to mention.
I do understand their detachment. When you’re making six- figure salaries, living in million- dollar- plus homes, eating at high- end restaurants, shopping luxury brands, driving European cars, holidaying in Paris, Rome and New York, it’s easy to forget how most other British Columbians live. So, let me remind them. The jobs you want poor people to have don’t pay a living wage. According to BC Stats, those in the accommodation and food service industries earn $ 17,825 annually. Trade- related jobs pay $ 32,602 each year. The cultural and recreation sector pays $ 44,000 per annum.
So they cannot afford to buy nourishing food, or even replace a pair of shoes that their kids need or register them for a swimming class, a life- saving skill when you live in a city surrounded by water. Rent, food and getting to and from work swallow most of their income.
In case the elites have not noticed, the child poverty rate is 16.4 per cent in B. C. Thousands of kids are turning up at schools across this province without breakfast because their parents don’t have the money to feed them; try learning on an empty stomach.
I had a glimpse of this heart- wrenching situation as someone who worked on The Vancouver Sun’s Adopt- a-School program last year. We raised $ 300,000 from generous readers and The Vancouver Sun’s Children’s Fund matched it so that we could start feeding elementary school kids, provide educational aids to help them learn and clothing to keep them dry and warm.
The 10 per cent should step out of their comfy homes and glass towers, visit some of the schools that we profiled and see the faces of these kids. Empathy and action will be the result.
Want more evidence of hardship among the middle class? The average household debt- to- income ratio in B. C. is 160 per cent, the highest in the country. The median household income in the province is just $ 63,000. That’s simply because elites are preventing the creation of high- paying jobs. The jobs that they deprive the poor of pay decent coin. The mining, forestry, oil and gas sector pays $ 75,868 annually; the utilities sector delivers $ 83,460; professional, scientific and technical workers are paid $ 61,956; and construction doles out $ 51,896.
But many of these politicians, environmental activists, labour leaders, social agency executives, lawyers, doctors and those born with silver spoons in their mouths have to recognize that their charmed lives are also dependent on developing the natural resources our province has.
The resource sector creates the wealth that provides for the jobs and income in Metro Vancouver, be they lawyers and bankers working on mining and gas deals or doctors, teachers and professors who are paid through tax dollars generated through resource extraction and exports through our ports.
So those in the Occupy Vancouver movement and the rest of the 90 per cent should be protesting at the offices of politicians, environmentalists, trade unionists, professors and social activists who are hell- bent on depriving the poor of a livelihood. Now, that’s a political party I would like to lead.
What’s my platform you ask? “Living wage jobs.” What’s my slogan? “Jobs, dignity and economic security.”
Here comes the spin, 13 months of this shit now.
Thanks Chia. It appears to be a legit article from the Vancouver Sun and attacks all walks of life in the political spectrum. Does have a suspicious energy focus though...
The writer subscribes to the ideology that if you want to improve the lot of the poor you must first improve the lot of the rich. Then the benefit of that improvement will naturally trickle down to the folks at the bottom of the pyramid scheme.
Exactly the way it's worked out the last decade here in BC. Oh wait it hasn't worked out but it's not the Liberal's fault. It's the other people who have stopped the flow of cash to the little guy.
I think the article is best red out loud in the stereotypical late night "I'll fight for you" shrill lawyer voice.