B.C. Liberals continue to fail communities along the Highway of Tears

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PRINCE RUPERT— The B.C. Liberals are failing First Nations women and northern communities by giving up on recommendations made by the Missing Women’s Commission says Jennifer Rice, the New Democrat MLA for North Coast.

“It’s been two years since the Missing Women’s Commission said offering safe, accessible transportation along the Highway of Tears was an urgent recommendation which should be implemented immediately,” said Rice.

“Now the Minister of Justice is saying that this, and other unfinished recommendations simply aren’t important.”

Rice noted that instead of providing shuttle service to northern communities the B.C. Liberals are giving $75,000 to a single First Nation for driving training, and have put together a website of links to transportation services.

“If anything that website they threw together highlights just how inadequate this government response is. The website doesn’t even list transportation services to and from Nass communities, for example,” said Rice.

“Yet women in these communities are often forced to make difficult choices about getting to and from regional centres like Terrace and Prince Rupert, choices that can put them at risk, and instead of giving those women access to safe affordable transportation, the B.C. Liberals put out a website that lists limousines as a transportation option.”

Rice said that the B.C. Liberals are out of touch with the reality for many women in northern communities, who can’t afford to drive, let alone take limousines and may not even have access to the internet.

“The B.C. Liberals say they want a violence free B.C. but then they ignore recommendations from the Missing Women’s Commission that would improve safety for women and girls across the north,” said Rice. “The B.C. Liberals are obviously good at figuring out what people want to hear, but then they don’t deliver.”