(File photo)

Fixing the struggling health-care system, constructing more affordable housing and helping with the rising cost of living were just some of the highlights the BC government promised from Monday’s throne speech.

On Monday, January 6th, BC’s provincial government and its members of the legislative assembly returned to session and Lieutenant Governor Janet Austin delivered the traditional throne speech with optimism.

“We open this session of the legislature at a time where people are facing real challenges,” said Austin.

“Global inflation is squeezing housing budgets, food prices are going up, it’s hard to find a doctor, we continue to see mental health challenges brought on by the pandemic and toxic drug crisis, housing costs continue to rise as our population grows and interest rates increase.”

“People in BC are working harder than ever, but many feel they’re just getting by and not getting ahead.”

Austin’s speech focussed on matters that matter the most to British Columbians. At the forefront of the legislative assembly’s agenda for the session they are entering are:

  • Aiding BC residents with rising costs, especially those with low incomes and families with children
  • Taking on the housing crisis by launching a refreshed housing plan, building homes and increasing services near transit hubs
  • Strengthening public healthcare by investing in new hospitals, a new medical school, better treatment services and bringing more internationally trained doctors and nurses into clinics.
  • Creating a better sense of safety by getting repeat offenders off the streets and cracking down on gangs as well as major crimes. 
  • Building BC’s economy by focussing on equal pay for equal work by women with a payment transparency law
  • Fighting climate change by expanding low-cost clean-energy solutions and working with Indigenous communities

“Despite everything we’ve gone through over the past few years, British Columbians remain relentlessly optimistic about their province — and with good reason,” said Premier David Eby in a statement.

“After all, it is the people of BC who got shots into arms, rebuilt highways after flooding, kept kids learning in schools and businesses thriving in difficult circumstances.”

“Our government will build a stronger, more secure future with British Columbians, because there’s nothing we can’t accomplish or overcome when we work together.”

Watch the speech below: 

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