BC FORUM News - from the Winter 2017 issue of The Advocate
Pushing the NDP to take action on key priorities
BC FORUM has called on the provincial government to ensure that key priorities for retired workers and their families are addressed in the 2018 budget and beyond.
In a presentation to the Select Standing Committee on Finance and Government Services, Diane Wood, President of BC FORUM, urged action on a wide range of issues that were neglected or ignored by the previous government.
“Nearly 10,000 British Columbians over 55 are earning the minimum wage. These people cannot afford to live in dignity,” said Wood, supporting an increase to $15.00 an hour.
“In addition, we are seeing an increasing number of our members providing almost full time child care for their grandchildren due to the lack of spaces, and the high cost of quality care.
“We urge the government to move as quickly as possible to implement $10 a day child care and increase the number of spaces,” she said. BC FORUM also advocated that the government:
• Build safe, secure and accessible social housing and other affordable housing for seniors.
• Decrease the annual threshold for Pharmacare and push for a National Pharmacare program.
• Reduce the cost of Medical Service Plan premiums for seniors.
• Provide dignity for seniors in care by ensuring they have a minimum number of care hours every day to allow them to have baths, be fed, use the washroom, have their other needs attended to and to have real and meaningful interactions with their care givers.
• Increase the number of home support hours so more seniors can stay at home.
• Work with the federal government to develop a dementia strategy.
• Increase the amount of the home renovation tax credit.
• Increase the Shelter Aid for Elderly Renters (SAFER) rate.