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Meet Your Candidates: Esquimalt-Metchosin hopefuls outline the issues facing their riding

Advance voting opens Oct. 15, ahead of the Oct. 24 election

Ahead of this October’s provincial election, Black Press Media asked your candidates what they believe the biggest issues are facing the Esquimalt-Metchosin riding and the province. Here are their responses.

Mitzi Dean

Mitzi Dean – NDP: Esquimalt-Metchosin is a working community with many families, seniors and single people and the pandemic has had an impact on everybody. Many have lost jobs, some have seen hours cut, and there’s uncertainty.

The cost of living is a big issue for people who live in my community, and the John Horgan NDP has a plan to help. We’re working to build a B.C. where strong public services are always there when people need them.

We’re focused on better health care, building more affordable housing, expanding child care, and good jobs and livelihoods in a clean-energy future. Our proposal to freeze rents until 2021 will help, as will expanding $10 a day child care, and making transit free for kids under 12 years old.

A re-elected John Horgan government would invest one per cent of GDP in a new Recovery Investment Fund. This $3 billion a year will build more schools and hospitals, road and bridges, child care centres and more – and create about 18,000 jobs each and every year.

There is much more work yet to be done and I’m eager to continue pushing ahead. We’re making progress for people, and building a recovery that includes everyone.

Andy MacKinnon

Andy MacKinnon – Green: My name is Andy MacKinnon. I’m a retired professional forester and professional biologist, and a Metchosin councillor for the last four years.

Our riding is a collection of vibrant human communities set in an area with a significant natural presence. With your help, I hope to represent the needs of the people of this riding – especially in the pressing issues of healthcare, childcare, transportation, and housing– as well as the long-term issue of how we can build communities that relate to their natural environments in healthy and sustainable ways. Additionally, I believe that we need better leadership than has been supplied by BC Liberals or NDP on important provincial issues such as land use planning, old-growth forests, and threatened and endangered species.

Desta McPherson – Independent

Candidate did not respond to the Gazette’s request for a photo or an answer to the question.

RJ Senko

RJ Senko – Liberal: Among the many issues facing residents of Esquimalt-Metchosin, transportation and access to primary health care are two of the biggest issues.

On transportation, I want to finish work I started 30 years ago and get trains running again on the E&N line. Commuter rail between the West Shore and Victoria will ease traffic and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

A passenger ferry between Colwood and Victoria will have the same benefits.

Recruitment of physicians and nurse practitioners needs to be enhanced and coordinated among all lower Island municipalities. We have three major educational institutions within the region that need additional funding so we can train more nurses, nurse practitioners and doctors right here at home.

In our region, and throughout B.C., we need to address affordable housing, homelessness, inclusion and equity issues, protect our environment and reconciliation with indigenous peoples. Of course, none of this is possible unless we can restart our economy.

Finally, we need to break through our antiquated system of “left vs right” partisan politics so we can work together to build a prosperous and just society of which we can all be proud participants.

READ MORE: A Greater Victoria guide to voting in the B.C. election

Election day is Oct. 24 with advance polls open Oct. 15 to 21 from 8 a.m. until 8 p.m. Find more election coverage online at goldstreamgazette.com/tag/bc-votes-2020.

READ MORE: B.C. Politics


 

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