(From left to right) Paul Nursey, CEO of Destination Greater Victoria; Catherine Holt, CEO of the Greater Victoria Chamber of Commerce; Jeff Bray, CEO of the Downtown Victoria Business Association; and Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps. The four community leaders presented on topics such as labour, transportation, housing and climate change during an all candidates listening session at the Victoria Conference Centre. (Nina Grossman/News Staff)

Federal candidates hear Greater Victoria priorities at listening session

Local leaders address MP-hopefuls on labour, housing and more

Greater Victoria kicked off the first official day of the federal campaign season with a listening session for candidates from the region’s electoral districts.

Elected officials and community leaders gathered at the Victoria Conference Centre Wednesday evening for a session outlining the region’s priorities heading into Canada’s 43rd general election.

READ ALSO: With federal election called, parties unleash campaigns in Ontario, Quebec and B.C.

The meeting covered six key priorities as they pertain to Greater Victoria: labour, transportation, childcare, housing, climate change and reconciliation. The panel navigated the complex issues with succinct and focused presentations, finishing each with “asks” for the federal government and the potential MPs dotting the lecture theatre.

Covering climate change, Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps suggested the federal government mandate climate change action plans from Canadian cities with details on how each local government will help Canada meet climate change targets.

Helps also echoed a sentiment she’s shared before.

“Cities need more power, more money and more authority to effectively deal with climate change,” she said.

READ ALSO: Elizabeth May predicts ‘likely’ more Greens elected in Greater Victoria

Paul Nursey, CEO of Destination Greater Victoria, advised immigration and training as paths forward for progress in Greater Victoria’s labour and workforce, a sentiment echoed by Catherine Holt, CEO of the Greater Victoria’s Chamber of Commerce.

Holt, in her presentation on childcare, called the current situation “abysmal,” noting the lack of childcare spaces and cost of care. She asked the candidates to consider the impacts of increased investments, remarking that “available and affordable childcare has a direct impact on parents’ ability to work in our region.”

READ ALSO: City of Victoria looking into citywide Childcare Action Plan

Jeff Bray, CEO of the Downtown Victoria Business Association, honed in on housing and affordability, an issue he said “requires leadership from all levels of government.”

He asked the federal representatives to continue implementing the national housing strategy, extend support for Indigenous housing options and create tax incentives encouraging private sector investment in rental housing.

READ ALSO: Average housing prices would have to drop by $413,000 for Victoria to become affordable

After a brief question period, a handful of MP candidates took the stage. Candidates from the Green party, NDP, Liberal party, People’s Party of Canada and the Animal Protection Party of Canada made their campaign bid to the theatre, each using their two-minute time limit to tell the crowd why they deserve to be voted for.



nina.grossman@blackpress.ca

Follow us on Instagram
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Are you ready for the Big One?

Sidney Fire hosts Peninsula Emergency Preparedness Expo, Sept. 20

Oak Bay approves subdivision for lot that houses Maclure-designed heritage home

Mansion-style Blair Gowie house famous for its design and historical connection with Butchart family

MLA Andrew Weaver thins workload after illness, full recovery expected

BC Green Party leader felt symptoms at a public event in Langley, and was taken to hospital

Golfer aims for hole-in-one to raise cash for Victoria Hospice

Fundraiser event hits Highland Pacific Golf Course Sept. 17

Vancouver Canucks face off against Calgary Flames in Victoria

Pre-season action gets underway at 7 p.m.

VIDEO: Liberals make child care pledge, Greens unveil platform on Day 6 of campaign

Green party leader Elizabeth May unveils her party’s platform in Toronto

B.C. forest industry looks to a high-technology future

Restructuring similar to Europe 15 years ago, executive says

RCMP conclude investigation into 2017 Elephant Hill wildfire

Files have been turned over to BC Prosecution Service

B.C. wants to be part of global resolution in opioid company bankruptcy claim

Government says settlement must include Canadian claims for devastation created by overdose crisis

Two Nanaimo residents share $5-million Lotto 6/49 prize

Jesse Logan and Teresa Winters Day matched all six numbers in Aug. 21 Lotto 6/49 draw

Island campground on the chopping block as ALC deadline looms

Owners fighting to continue facility’s operation, with a huge outpouring of support

B.C. ends ‘birth alerts’ in child welfare cases

‘Social service workers will no longer share information about expectant parents without consent’

Free Tesla 3 offered with purchase of Surrey townhome

Century Group’s offer for Viridian development runs through Oct. 31

Most Read