The BC Green Party announced their full election platform on Wednesday, becoming the last of the three major parties to do so.
Fresh off a debate performance that was widely praised by commentators across BC media, leader Sonia Furstenau announced the platform at a campaign stop in New Westminster.
“The pandemic has hurt young people, service and hospitality industry workers, as well as small business and the tourism sector,” Furstenau said.
“COVID-19 has also disproportionately affected women…and it has come at a heartbreaking cost to seniors.”
She added that a promise to shift money from for-profit long-term care and to reform the system had already been announced.
Other promises announced earlier by the Green Party in the campaign include:
- A pledge to fund free early childhood education programs for 3 and 4-year-olds
- $300 million for rent subsidies to small businesses
- Establishing a $1 billion mental health fund
- Re-working transit strategy by eliminating PST on e-bikes, supporting active infrastructure like bike lanes, promoting neighbourhood car co-ops, and reworking local government finances to be less reliant on property taxes
- Establishing a repayable loan program for tourism operators
One of the biggest highlights of the full Green platform is a pledge to “integrate the principles of basic income.”
While the platform doesn’t offer a fully universal income, the Green Party promised they would begin a transition towards basic income by making $300 crisis supplements through income and disability assistance permanent.
They would also index assistance to inflation, and eliminate asset tests.
The party also pledged to reduce clawbacks on earned income to reduce the disincentive to work and would establish a 12-month period where those who qualify for income assistance can earn extra income without clawbacks.
The BC Green Party also said they would eliminate loopholes on the speculation tax, while promising to create a task force on employment standards that would “ensure that multinational companies are paying their fair share of taxes in BC.”
Additional promises include:
- Introducing equal pay legislation
- Offering free prescription contraception for people under 25, and removing PST on all prescription contraceptive products
- Bringing back BC Ferries as a crown corporation
- Establishing a $500 million fund to support sustainable jobs
The full platform is available on the BC Green Party website.