When the solution becomes part of the problem

Lets talk about the new plan the Liberals have cooked up, that Kevin Falcon was talking about in Kamloops this week:

” The B.C. Liberal government is developing a program to move employable people on welfare to northern B.C., where they will be trained and housed.

B.C. Finance Minister Kevin Falcon mentioned the program under development Tuesday during a budget-style speech to the Kamloops Chamber of Commerce.

While details are not yet available, Falcon said in an interview with reporters that government is developing a welfare-to-work program.

“We’re working across government to put together a package to find a way to fly them up to where work is, provide accommodation and training, if necessary, and put them into high-paying jobs.”

In his speech to the Chamber, Falcon said Dawson Creek’s mayor attended one of the Occupy protests in Vancouver last year, handing out business cards and encouraging people unhappy with their standard of living to move north.

Falcon said the program would target jobs in the northeast and northwest, both of which are experiencing high rates of growth, and resulting low unemployment.

“There’s huge opportunities and they don’t have the workforce to deal with it.”

Falcon said government officials are working with industry to come up with a program that will fill needs.

While there will be costs, Falcon said there will be offsetting savings from reduction in social assistance payments by government and additional income tax revenue from new workers”

Wow. I don’t even know where to begin with this one, the potential for disastrous consequences to many northern communities is something Falcon might not be thinking about.

While this gosh-darn amazing job plan of Christy’s made her subject of many jokes on twitter yesterday ( she actually went so far to take credit for jobs that she had nothing to do with like the opening of the Mackenzie mill in 2010, which is advertised on her Jobs Plan site), this new move has me shaking my head.

First,we already know that mines in BC have been allowed to hire overseas workers because, they claim, the lack of skilled workers here. While I find it extremely hard to believe this mine couldn’t find one single Canadian suitable to work there, it speaks to the need for skilled labour, extremely skilled labour such as welders,machinists,equipement operators. All trades which take extremely comprehensive training programs and education, as well as extended apprenticeship programs. Expensive programs that even young -and mature – men here have a hard time financing. Not something you can just learn at the drop of a hat.A lot of companies don’t want to hire newbies for safety reasons. And as you notice in the comments section of the Kamloops article, there are a host of other issues that will greet people forced to move to the north: exorbitant rents, lack of affordable housing and an extremely high cost of living in many booming industry towns. Earth to Falcon, earth to Falcon…. this from the man who tried to woo the “Forgotten North” by promising to open a second premiers office up there if he won the leadership…

I checked a few job search engines online to see what kind of jobs are out there and this link is a good example of what was found on other job search site, more often than not the same job listed over multiple sites: http://www.jobsearchonline.bc.ca/Job%20Search/jobpostings.htm

Sure, a few entry level jobs, but not a lot of jobs at all, nor are there many listed that are going to  pay a living wage high enough for someone to afford the rents up there- does the government intend to subsidize them, pay for vehicles since transit is not an option and many people on welfare can’t afford a car, or more likely up there, a truck?  Are they going to assist with higher food costs and higher utility bills from the longer, colder winter? Good grief. The list goes on.

I’m thinking this job plan has another motive, one a bit longer term than solving any current gosh darn amazing jobs plan issue. I suspect this is a push to start creating a pool of workers for Site C and for the expected 80,000 jobs to be created by fracking over the next 25 years, as detailed on this very informative website, The North Peace Economic Development Commission. http://npedc.ca/key-opportunities 

In fact, BC Hydro has already begun advertising  business and job opportunities for this phase of Site C development and planning… again showing the sham both federal and provincial governments place on the environmental and public consultation process. http://www.bchydro.com/energy_in_bc/projects/site_c/business_opportunities.html

I agree wholeheartedly that BC needs to move to get people working in living wage jobs and get them off welfare, but even the first glimpse at this news from Falcon is so easily torn apart by the reality and cost of doing it. And I have yet to really touch the social cost of a failed initiative, in communities where many people have already gone to try and live, lured by talk of big jobs, big money… only to end up forced back south by the reality of boomtowns that need highly skilled and educated labour forces, not the average jack or jill.

What are your thoughts on this new plan?

35 thoughts on “When the solution becomes part of the problem

  1. Lynn

    Laila,
    I’m with the predator bird on this one.
    Many, many, many years ago one of the Scandinavian countries implemented this.
    The citizen on gov’t assist would have a year to find a job. If they could not secure employment the state would. That meant you would have to move.
    We are bitching and moaning about non-nationals being brought in to fill jobs when we have canadians that can fill positions.
    Welfare is not a lifestyle. Having more babies should not be a method to give one self a raise. I met a woman who is on welfare and has SEVEN children. SEVEN!
    I think Falcon’s idea is a good one.

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    1. Laila

      I agree we have far too many milking the system here, without a doubt,who could and should be working. However I would say what do the many people already living in the north and looking for work think about this? The unemployment rate in PG was 8.5 % in January, 4300 people out of work. Ditto for other small communities. Welfare rates similar, so why not train the people who already are in the north if they really need to train anyone at all?

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  2. cherylb

    Wow! Forcing people to relocate whether they want to or not? Is it just me, or does this resonate with shades of Japanese internment and “getting them off the coast”? Holy cow! I’d be challenging that one in court. I’m pretty sure conditions for receiving government assistance don’t include forceable relocation.

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  3. e.a.f.

    Relocation, Relocation. Lets see the federal government did this during WWII, gross violation of human rights. The Nazis were fond of using the term relocation to camps. Makes one wonder who the lieberals want to move up north.

    People on welfare are usually there for a reason. The reason would preclude working up north in skilled jobs. The majority of people on welfare do not have the skills to work these jobs nor the education or if they do there are health issues. Trying to move people up north for unskilled positions won’t work because they will not be able to find housing.

    Now as to the impact on northern communities. what it looks like is the lieberals want to move the social problems of the lower mainland to the north where people won’t see them. This will devistate north communities who are not prepared for the influx of people nor people with social/health issues. What we will see in northern communities is a spike in crime, deaths, etc.

    I would suggest Falcon is talking about this so when they bring foreign workers in they can say, they tried to find people living in B.C. to do the work but couldn’t. There will be a lack of service workers if there are large projects happening up north. Employers will not want to pay the wages required. Employers will want to pay min. wage. Living expenses in the north will require a min. of $18 an hr.

    If the leiberals had truly been interested in assisting people on welfare to find jobs they would have increased the spaces in schools & pd. them to go to school. As it stands right now there are not enough spaces in schools for people wishing to learn trades, tech. skills, etc. In case people haven’t noticed the lieberals aren’t willing to even put money into education for the children in B.C. We have only to look at the number of portables at schools, the lack of teaching aids, large classes, etc. Falcon is as usual just lying to find something to deflect from the real issues in B.C.

    The “mega” projects if they go ahead will have foreign workers come in. They will be cheaper, complain less, not unionize, can be shipped home when the are injuired on the job..

    There are no jobs in the north for people on welfare. The north already has sufficient people on welfare for whom nothing is being done.

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    1. Laila

      Excellent comment e.a.f, excellent.Unemployment from the forestry industry has had a strong impact in many areas of BC,and retraining these workers has not been a priority for this government.

      People down here might think this is great, get all the welfare bums out of here up to the north, but the northern communities have their own issues, some resulting from people as I mentioned in this post,who heard of great opportunity and couldnt make it work. Unless you are highly educated and skilled in a specific field, like a welder with all your tickets, heavy duty mechanics, machinists -all of which require specialized training. Labourers are the only thing that would not, and traditionally do not pay a wage high enough to be able to afford rents in most of the towns experiencing industry and resource related activity.

      Hi John, I think your last line sums it up best…. another cheap political talking point. The costs associated with a program like this…. wow. How about get off work program and skills training for people that live here, to stay here, and do the same up north? Two completely different worlds the north and south, wih two totally different ways of life. Many would be surprised down here to see how high the rents are in some of these towns!! the government builds housing for them, how long do they get to stay in housing on the government dime?

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  4. Great questions Laila. I noticed mention of the job relocations plan in the budget speech and thought it could be a good thing but of course a lot depends on how it will be done; I had visions of new housing comprised of trailer parks and other instant facilities but I too highly doubt that the Clark government will find the money to adequately assist the people being relocated – assuming it’s voluntary too. And then as I read your piece it hit me: what they’re setting up is another plank to promote in their 2013 pre-election campaign! More of a talking point for votes than real action for the public good. They’ll try to get a lot of mileage out of something that’s really a ruse or scam. That’s what they’ve been doing on numerous policy fronts, as your readers can see more details of at my new blog here: http://thedailytwigg.blogspot.com/
    Furthermore it’s interesting to see how all of these boondoggles seem to be collapsing or at least becoming exposed all at once, the latest being questions about raw-log exports and a billion-dollar deal with Telus that competitors suggest was done unfairly. Blowing holes in this job relocation scam before it starts could be another one.
    It IS a good idea, but only if it’s done right, and the odds suggest it will be merely another cheap political talking point.
    – John Twigg

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  5. Curt

    Like the majority of those on welfare want to be on it? I highly doubt it. Sure, there are some, but not all. And you can bet this has to do with the corporate elite wanting workers, cheap workers, to work on “their” pet projects and of course, the lieberals will accomodate them, won’t they.
    Welcome to the new “Communist BC” under the “Lieberal Regime”. This is not some 3rd world country, or is it?
    I am absolutely appalled by Kevie, Chirsty and their corrupt bunch and corporate elites.
    Disgusted yet again.

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  6. Lynn

    Awesome, constructive thoughts and ideas.
    Mr.Twigg and e.a.f.are both correct. All of the gov’t mistakes are now being exposed.
    Just heard Abbott talking on the radio how they are looking at China and how they deal with classrooms/school issues.
    It would seem the gov’t is not innovative leaders as they are constantly running all over the globe seeking out solutions to the problems they themselves have caused.
    I am tired of supporting long term able body welfare recipients and for that matter corporate welfare reciepients.
    Something must be done. Laila, your post is a welcoming start to discovering how we can get those bums off their duffs and contribute.

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  7. http://www.vancouversun.com/health/Doctor+shortage+closes+Fort+James+emergency+ward/6301911/story.html

    Who will care for them?

    I agree with e.a.f.’s assessment. Lynn, you assume that “able body welfare recipients” are capable of learning highly technical skills. You seem to have a picture in your head of welfare recipients as crafty scammers. If you were correct, wouldn’t they be busy inventing far more lucrative schemes? The right wing media want you to hate the poor. I see it’s working.

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  8. workforfun

    I am highly suspicious of anything that the BC Liberals claim to be good for the province – nearly twelve years of lying and misinformation doesn’t make them honest even once.
    When the governement thinks and agrees to bring in cheaper foreign workers to fill jobs, you can bet your last dollar, the government won’t be paying top wages – a government that is hell bent on union busting too.

    Nah, this is just another load of horseshit (sorry about that) and should be treated as such.

    I have worked away in camps on major constructioin sites and it really wasn’t too bad and the money was good – but that was in the late 1960’s and overseas. However, with the BC Liberals involved and the “for profit” mentality, they will surely manage to screw up whatever they do, ROYALLY! No question about that. The only way they can do it is force people to move and I guarantee it will be an unmitigated distsater – like everything else the BC Liberals have been involved with.

    Thanks

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  9. After perusing your link to ‘jobsearchonline.bc.ca’, I think I have come up with a solution. There appears to be a large variety of jobs for both skilled and unskilled workers. My solution is to train unemployed British Columbians for the work that requires skill, and hire the unskilled workers from other countries.

    Those unemployed British Columbians who refuse to be trained for skilled trades should have to take a reduction in their social assistance cheques unless they can prove they’re physically or mentally unable to work.

    Also, I think the corporations who need these skilled workers should share, with the government, the expense of training them. They’ve been given free rein by the BC Liberals to indulge in their greed far too long.

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  10. I’m waiting for phase 2 of the plan: when Falcon announces BC will be putting homeless people on ice floes and sending them off to sea to reduce the unemployment rate and homelessness. What is the process for removing the government in power? Do we have to wait for the unelected premier to call an election, or can we impeach like in the US?

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    1. Laila

      gini, I think those are some ideas with great potential. Having worked in non-profit,I do know that in many cases there are more barriers to finding and keeping stable employment than just lack of skills- unstable housing,lack of support, untreated addictions and mental illness play a big part in many welfare recipients lives. The cycle of poverty. However there are also a lot of people that would love to work, yet can’t find the proper training,or afford to go to school because of criss cross bureacracy… get a student loan, you can’t get welfare, cant get a student loan on welfare or not enough of one because it counts as income… a vicious circle for some. Clearly though, this is a band-aid not likely a solution.

      Dethe, that cracks me up. Only problem is climate change is melting the floes too fast… oh wait. Thats probably part of the plan too!

      I don’t think you can impeach an MLA, unfortunately, and she who we will not name, although she is not smart enough to run this province, is smart enough to know this is not the time to do that.

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  11. johnsaghast

    Wait a minute! This sounds like a win-win situation. Train the welfare people to be locums and doctors and send them North to staff the hospitals.
    Accommodation? Put them up in the Fort Hotel. Then some enterprising Northerner can provide a government subsidized transportation system to get them to the outlying hospitals.
    What an absolutely ridiculous idea!
    Better still, keep them in the Lower Mainland and train them to be Politicians. They couldn’t be less effective than the ones we have now. (Depending on who did the training)

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  12. tf

    Quick and rough history of events in Vancouver and BC – so relevant for us today.
    The stock market crash of 1929 led to severe worldwide economic crash and “The Great Depression”.
    To solve homelessness and unemployment, the Canadian government (with the help of the military) created “relief camps” and relocated men on “relief” (read “welfare”) to work on projects of “national importance.” As we saw then, revolution was in the seeds of the scheme.
    In really simple terms, these camps led to major union-building, occupations and wide-spread strikes, the On To Ottawa Trek and Regina Riot of 1935, the brutal conclusion of the month-long “occupation” of the Sinclair centre Post Office known as Bloody Sunday in 1938. Fifteen thousand people protested at the Powell Street Grounds against the “police terror.” Governments fell and labour benefits won.
    And we know what followed – the great economic stimulus package – WWII – and millions of lives lost.
    Why don’t we read our history books and learn from the past? Why do we come up with the same ideas decade-in and decade-out? Why can’t our leaders learn and be original?
    Rhetorical questions of course ~

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  13. Bill Ferguson

    This is disturbing to say the least. The reason skilled labour isn’t coming that way, is the cost of living makes it kind’a pointless. Also, a lot these start-up operations don’t pay that well. Looking at this forced labour plan; Imagine having no assets, no experience, and basic core mining training – then get forced into an entry level position of hard labour. The reason they’re importing labour from out of the country is because it’s cheap labour they can control. Once they have others there, they keep them trapped with high costs, lower wages, and isolation.

    The vast majority of people on social assistance are there for a reason, ‘Welfare Fraudsters’ and ‘System Milkers’ have proven to be never over 2% of the group pretty much everywhere in the world. I wonder, will these mines be willing to hire people with Mental Disorders, permanently injured workers, and people with various health problems?

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  14. E.Olson

    It’s all been said except it looks like we are going to hell in a hand basket! The Feds are ripping up rules and regulations, working to destroy the CBC and then we have our desparate, power seeking group in BC desparately trying to hang onto power any way they can.

    The real shame is that once they are kicked out whoever takes over will have very little to work with to change the situation. Falcon and company are saddling us with so much debt because of their pet projects, it is going to be next to impossible to crawl out of it–but we must.

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  15. Debbie

    A couple of things jump out at me. First we have a government who want to emulate China. When Falcon was transportation Minister he mused that he wished BC was more like China because they could get projects done quicker. No environmental review, no public hearings, etc., they’d just get it done. The project would just get built. I happened to be in China before the Olympics and was shocked at how the work was being done there. The workers were on skyscrapers wearing running shoes, no hard hats, no gloves, no safety equipment of any kind. Thousands of workers were injured or died and since they don’t have any WCB the families were often left destitute..There are many Chinese workers who are forced to leave their home villages for work in factories. They live in company built housing and have their rent taken from their salaries. Since Falcon loves the Chinese model do much I’m sure he’d like BC workrs to be like indentured servants working for their Lord. Oh and let’s not forget his comment about Cuba when it was revealed the wage disparity between rich and poor was growing. He said we should be happy because everyone in Cuba is poor, so the BC poor should be happy they can work their way up. Scrooge has nothing on this guy.
    As to Abbotts comments about China, well that’s to be expected because he knows nothing about the real Chnese education methods. Firstly, Chinese schools do not have integrated schools with special needs students in a regular classroom. Secondly, unless you’re willing to bring in corporal punishment and whip kids into submission, our schools will never be as Minister Abbott would like.
    Let’s also remember that Clarkes son goes to private school. Likely because he is in a smaller class size that has Assistant Teachers for special needs children.
    Shouldn’t it be obvious that we need to be putting money and resources into our education system and make it affordable and accessible. This government is feeding the rear end of the cow instead of the mouth. Educating. BCs children properly is the beginning. Why is it that when huge salaries and bonuses for civil servant or heads of provincial corporations are questioned the answeris always the same. “if we want the best you have to pay them”, Seems that philosophy only counts for some.
    My son works up North and he has confirmed that the Chinese workers are being brought in. He also has said that it’s tough to get Canadian workers because of the way they are treated. After moving their families from other parts of Canada, especially Newfoundland, they got fed up with being laid off every time commodities fell. Sure the money was good when they were working but those high wages went pretty quick because it’s so expensive. Many have had enough with the on again off again these corporations and as a consequence stay away from Northern Alberts and BC.
    So, as others have pointed out, this little sham has everything to do with photo ops and bringing in foreign workers

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  16. Maggie Bernet

    I am just curious on much of a bonus or incentives will Falcon get from the companies up north? so again it is all about him/them, they don’t care about the people and the ones that are on welfare or disability, they don’t have to, we let them get aways with everything, unless all of us stand up at once and say enough is enough, nothing will change…
    his head is swollen with arrogance just like so many other leaders of ours.

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  17. Gloria

    China owns BC mines, they are bringing over their own miners. If any of the new mines coming into Northern BC are Chinese owned, they too will take those jobs. China is buying up our natural gas, even though they have gas fields in their own country. Campbell already shipped our mills to China, along with our raw logs. Campbell thieved and sold our assets. Boessenkool and Christy are selling off the rest of our buildings and Real Estate. There’s not much left of BC. Everything from this province, has been thieved and sold. Christy’s foreign workers will be mostly Chinese.

    Harper is also permitting China to buy up the oil sands. China is bringing their own people, to work their vast tar sands projects too. China refuses to pay Canadian wages. They refuse to comply with Canadian laws and work regulations. They can pay their own people, crap wages. China will not permit the refining of the oil to be done in Canada. It will be done in China, for the very cheap labor. That also gives their people jobs.

    China owns many company’s in Canada. If people remember? Fadden of CSIS warned of China’s encroachment into Canada. Our worst nightmares, are coming true. They own our resources, and our jobs as well.

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  18. johnsaghast

    Christy’s lucky the Chinese haven’t established a firm foothold here, yet. Another generation or so and they’d be after her job – and installing their rules. Oh well, by then there won’t be anything to steal, except maybe our freedoms.

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    1. Laila

      Oh John the chinese have indeed, established a very firm foothold here.They own a very good portion of British Columbia, hotels, businesses,mines…banks.. it is something I have been very interested in and have done extensive research on although I havent written it up yet. Often we see another name and if you trace back to the parent company, it is a mainland China owner.

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  19. Laila

    istvan, in my experience, it is never a waste of time to allow fair comment on the actitivities of the government. I think many times they gauge public reaction to their plans by monitoring social media and discussion boards, and they spend a stunning amount of time on my site reading, as they do on many other great BC political blogs.

    Bill, exactly my point. Anyone can take a look at rents in many of the resource towns and a lot of them are out of range for all but the highest wages. And indeed you are right about how out of country labour is treated in BC, not just in resource industries but also construction. There are a lot of mexican workers in Surrey and some of the stories I have heard from them ( I like to talk to people when I am out and about, everyone has a story) are not good.

    Good point Gabi – there are plenty of people who would jump at the chance to get that kind of training. In fact, go to a place like Labour Ready and I think any of those men would be absolutely gobsmacked to have a chance to get some real training and certification, and on any given day there is a long line up at the door.

    Eliza, you bring a great perspective, in consideration of your experience. Yes, the Liberals have absolutely set it up so any new government in power will have a hell of a time digging out. There are options for them on the table and of course as I have said over and over, realistically we do need to raise both corporate taxes and income tax at the mid-high to highe level earners who can afford the hit. This article is a very compelling read and details what happened in BC when Campbell took over many years ago and immediately began cutting taxes to win the people over. Sad sad sad people dont seem to understand where the governments main source of revenue comes from that funds education, healthcare etc… https://lailayuile.com/2010/11/23/tax-cuts-ensuing-loss-of-revenue-a-deliberate-financial-crisis-and-a-reason-to-introduce-the-p3-method-of-building/

    Hi Debbie, always lovely to have your input !! Debbie is as dedicated as I am to revealing what goes on behind many projects, the connections and who is getting the pats on the back and the perks in the pockets… A must read comment!!

    Maggie, you can bet your behind on the fact that Falcon has cooked up some idea with a corporate entity that has BC receiving some benefit other than getting people off the dole. Falcon isn’t one for doing things out of the goodness of his heart. In fact the funniest analogy I ever heard about Falcon came to me in a social invitation earlier this year, where the host told me he promised ” he would keep my glass full and as chilled as Falcons heart.” .. lol.. worked for me!

    Hi Gloria, thank you for contributing!

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  20. workforfun

    Oh – and if Falcon likes China so much – he should bloody well leave british Columbia and go and live there. Falcon is definitely not liked in his own province guaranteed.

    The training Falcon is talking about is just waffle. To train a trades person takes four to five years – depending on the individuals and their employers. In case anyone has forgotten, Campbell did away with the apprenticeship scheme – discontinued funding. Anyone lucky enough to become an apprentice wins out. The training Falcon wants to do is job introductory work – nothing meaningful or serious.
    For the government to act like the regimes of past – Nazis, Communists etc, just reinforces the arragont attitude of corrupt government and officials.

    As others have said, we are facing nothing less than sabotage by the corporations, intent on clawing back benifits and wages that have been won by the working class over the last century or so. Of course the BC Liberals and the Federal Conservatives want reduced conditions – it paves the way for total control and forced labour again. Have all our ancestors and family members that died in armed conflict, died vain or is this just a temporary set back to be overcome?

    Thanks

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  21. Laila

    workforfun, I doubt training will come into it, to be honest, or a very little contribution on the provinces part – look back again at the CBC video interview in which he emphasizes airfare and accomodation, with “maybe” some training if needed. Sounds like a round them up and ship them out remedy.

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  22. Love your post Debbie.
    I agree with most, I definitely disagree with Lynn, girl you HAVE NO CLUE.

    I’m permanently disabled.
    My total income from government disability (and all other sources) totaled (gross) $9,140 for 2011. (I get about $900/month now).
    For 5 years after my first stroke (1997-2002) I struggled on $490/month ( $500 -$10/month to pay back damage deposits from having to move to rooming houses) selling off everything of value, before finally applying and getting my disability-1 for 7 years (I didn’t and don’t like to think of myself as permanently disabled, but I am).
    Then Campbell came in 2001 and ripped everything up in the social system saying this would weed out the klingons and abusers of our system.
    That’s when doctors started charging $50 for a basic form up to $200 for a disability form. Check it out for yourself.

    So, after Campbell made it near impossible to get back on the system due to paperwork and costs, I went up Island to Nanaimo to work in an MSN call center.
    You could NOT get welfare in Nanaimo at that time unless you had a rejection notice (FACT) from RMH (the people who owned the fully American call center in the Country Club Mall, totally SUBSIDIZED by our government in order to “promote jobs”). That in itself should have been illegal. But, understandable I guess in order to get complacent people on welfare actively job searching.
    We weren’t considered human there, just expendable if we didn’t meet their (RMH’s) unreasonable (profit based) time quotas.
    Sure enough, within the year my disability interfered enough to get me “medically released”.
    I tried for work again in 2003 at the West Corporation (AT&T wireless call center out on Keating Xroad) but had a seizure and was put on medical leave, they then “terminated” me as an “abandonment of position” even though I had doctors notes and letters excusing me.

    So, I’m the thief, the abuser, the klingon of the welfare tit eh?!
    That’s the feeling and looks I get (my disabilities aren’t readily apparent, I don’t use a wheelchair for example) when mentioning my income.
    The ignorance is maddening.
    I get a few thousand a year, yet politicians and so called officials steal or waste millions every day/month, and people have the audacity to take the stance you have, to make unrealistic suggestions on how to live with a situation you absolutely have NO CLUE ABOUT, on an amount that is unlivable.
    An MLA recently tried it for a month AND COULDN’T DO IT.
    http://news.nationalpost.com/2012/01/18/british-columbia-mla-jagrup-brar-tries-living-on-welfare-for-a-month/ .
    I’ve been doing it for almost 14 BLOODY YEARS. What do you think I have left? Barely my dignity.. and I can’t even afford that anymore.

    AND, just as ONE example of where we really see abuse, Ida “CHOMP CHOMP” Chong spent over $6,000 in one year JUST FOR HER 1 MEAL PER DAY PERK (per diem) .
    How much does she make a year? How much of her travel, food, lodging are covered by taxpayers and why? Now multiply that by every MLA and MP.
    Don’t have the money for schools and such eh?!
    Why is all this travel (including Clark’s jet-setting) when things can be done over a video-conference.. isn’t everything electronic these days anyways?

    The people you see on Pandora street DO NOT REFLECT EVEN 1% of a percentage point the “type” of people receiving assistance, yet they are the first people you think of when the words “welfare recipient” are put out, and then all of a sudden everyone that’s on welfare is a scammer, etc.
    I do see the abusers of the system, I hate it, they make the ones who need/depend on it look bad. But, I will not turn into a dicktator and tell people what or where they should be when I have no idea of who they are, or more importantly, where they’ve been or may be in life as a person.

    How about not outsourcing all our jobs (see any “made in Canada” products on shelves lately?) and creating work here.
    How about making jobs easier with technology rather than eliminating them completely so people have some job options, especially for people like me who are so bored, have capabilities and WANT TO WORK.
    Instead, EVERY DAMN MONTH I worry myself sick (stress is a major trigger to my disability, fancy that) that there won’t be a cheque in the mail (as has happened many many many times) and I’ll have to go through all the BS it takes to get things straightened out in this red-tape govt.
    That means missing many meals, adding late payment charges to my bills, and my eviction notice will have to wait.

    I’m so mad, yet God bless those who do understand and have empathy. We will prevail. We will make things right. Just give us a chance.

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  23. Trailblazer

    IF , companies in Northern BC require personel why the hell is the Government providing them?
    WTF happened to free enterprise?
    If Joe Blo Ltd wants workers he should pay for them NOT the taxpayer.

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  24. Done and Done Laila, you got my vote.

    There is just so much wrong with what Falcon is saying. The government created the current job(less) situation by sending all our jobs to overseas to China. Sending all our raw products out to be manufactured by other countries and not even considering opening plants in Canada, I’m assuming it’s because of the huge profit margins of having laborers who are paid $80/month vs the $150/day that they’d have to pay workers here in Canada.

    The economic bubble’s going to pop soon, I’m really amazed it’s lasted this long, and I don’t want to be near any major city when it happens.
    We need to get rid of this government. Tear up the Constitution and rewrite it to reflect our current state of affairs, and not live off ones created over 150 years ago that high priced government lawyers can pick holes in as they had no idea back in the 1800’s of what life would be like now.
    A lot has changed.
    And at the same time, very little has changed from hundreds of years ago with respect to humanity and human rights/equality. We are still indentured slaves from birth, owing money from the moment we are born (hospital bills, registration fees, etc) although that applies more to the family than the individual, but it eventually falls on an individuals shoulders.

    A quick off-topic.
    I heard on the radio this morning that Teletoon (Astral Media-Quebec) was bought out by Bell media (BCE Inc) and apparently the stock in Teletoon (Astral) went up $0.50 cents a share this morning. I’m wondering (but wouldn’t be surprised at) how many benefited from insider information.

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  25. bernadettekeenan

    So if it doesn’t work out for these workers will they get transport back home?
    Reminds me of China too, when students from the City were sent out to the country.

    Like

  26. As somebody who trades with Mainland China, I’ve read a few assumptions in the comments that aren’t necessarily accurate. The number one reason why manufacturing (and I am a manufacturer with production in Canada) goes off shore is due to consumer spending. The customer consistently demands a lower price and the margins for manufacturers and retailers are getting slimmer. Yes, the inflation rate and debt service have artificially valued prices, and efficiencies to reduce the cost of goods sold in order to meet consumer demand are big factors for us. I recently walked away from a deal with a regional retailer because I can’t meet their pricing outlooks. ie, $25 gross profit on a $200 wholesale price. Without volume, it can’t be done.

    I do see some light for our team, in that products we are making aren’t that easy for Mainland Chinese manufacturers to replicate. We do big and bulky. Also regarding imports, larger retailers are in a bit of a dilemma right now as offshore quality control becomes an increasing concern. Inspectors hired to ensure compliance need inspectors themselves. In other parts of the world, bribes are way to increase profits. QC people from here are spending a lot of time babysitting orders right from the factory.

    Another assumption that isn’t necessary true is China’s lust for our resources. Yes, they are stockpiling, but manufacturing is slowing. To offer perspective, for the growing Chinese middle class to enjoy North American conveniences, China would have to use three times the oil and energy resources of the US. It can’t be done, nor do they want to do that. They have a different culture and are quite aware that there are not world resources to meet the demands of an aspiring middle class. Instead, Chinese investment coming here is really a small sector of profitable factory owners looking to diversify and hedge some of their wealth in Canada. Even oil is not on the radar. It’s more efficient for China to invest in Alberta Tar Sands as a hedge, selling the product to the US, while continuing to purchase from Venezula and Saudi producers. It’s just more efficient to sell tar sands oil to the US.

    What Canada should understand is that China needs secure and clean energy. They are excited about renewable energy resources and technological solutions. They can’t underwrite growth with coal fired power, which makes our tar sands look like green energy. They need cleaner resources and Canada might be able to help some through innovation, but Canada only meets a very small percentage of their energy needs. China is pursuing resources in Africa and South America with higher priority. Currently, Canada is not that big on Chinese radar. Nor do I consider their plans antagonistic. Likewise in the local housing sector, I ask Chinese associates if they would like to move to Canada or if they know of Vancouver. “No” is the most common response. They are more interested in our culture. The immigration into Canada from Mainland China is from a small sector and usually people who have relatives here already.

    The US is slowing as our biggest purchaser, from 80 to 70 percent, and very shortly China will exceed Canada as America’s largest trading partner. I don’t think that’s such a bad thing, personally, because Canadians will be spurred to innovate and build products for a home market. The dilemma is we are leveraged in US dollars, and they are reducing in value. That means we have to build more efficiently for a lower volume. Right now, the US is getting our resources on sale because they buy now but make payments with an ever weakening dollar. They are in recession and Canada is using inflation to make up the difference at home. Canadians are still taking out loans and artificially propping up values. And that’s my greatest fear, when debt based inflation is stripped from the economy, what will be the real value of goods? What will be the real wages? Are we looking at a massive writedown of assets? That’s why it’s important to avoid debt and and know what obligations will be sage assets and which will be toxic liabilities.

    When Kevin Falcon suggests unemployed should go up north for work, I don’t think he’s looking at reducing unemployment, rather trying to lower costs associated with an urban economy that is far too leveraged to support a downturn and meet social obligations.

    Glad I stumbled on your blog and enjoyed the opportunity to share a perspective. I was researching retail sales figures. These are only my opinions, each person has to do their own due diligence. Cheers.

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  27. Brent L said “Another assumption that isn’t necessary true is China’s lust for our resources.”

    I beg to differ Brent, they lust mightily after our resources.. I mean, after all, where are they going to go to get quality and quantity, especially in locating “future” resources, except here in Canada?
    Besides, this oil “scarcity” is a FARCE, contrived to inflate the current oil prices to keep the profit flowing into the oil companies bank accounts, which they then spread LIEberal-ly (intended pun) around to our politicians.

    The fact is the States has proven (although they don’t make noise about it, almost like they were trying to hide something?) to have more oil that can run their country as it is for hundreds of years. Just have to get around environment issues and figure out a better technology for reaping the black gold without fracking the environment and having tailing-ponds leaking into main water supplies.
    And, given our technology “advances” surely there is ONE person out there amongst the many intelligent “think tanks” the government employs who can devise a system of transport that is essentially “spill proof?”.
    Or, are the future spills the way our government sees fit to (eventually) employ people who are currently jobless?

    Also, regarding immigration from China and they’re not wanting to come here (by your words), I also have to disagree with the general overview you present about Chinese “intent” when talking with your Chinese business friends.
    You said; “They are more interested in our culture.”
    That’s correct, as their culture doesn’t allow for freedoms like they experience here, so who wouldn’t be interested in moving to a place that didn’t restrict everything you did?
    Although, that seems to be going out the window with Harper’s Omnibus Crime Bill, C-10.

    I struck up a conversation just this week on a transit-bus with a girl from Beijing (albeit haltingly as her English wasn’t advanced).
    She’s on a student visa to UVic. She’s so happy with Canada (as are her friends) that she’s working on becoming a lawyer for immigration so she can assist her family (and friends) to move over.
    Nothing wrong with that, except to show you’re very out of touch in your little power-world with regards to what the “average” person from China wants from us.

    regards,

    Like

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