• Sun. May 29th, 2022

Health Administration

Come One, Come All To Health Administration

Letters March 15: Gratitude for those who wore masks; Ukrainians showing all of us the way

Thanks to those who wore those masks

I would like to thank all the people under 75 who wore their masks over the past two years. Why, you ask? Because you have made it possible I would not get COVID or any of its cousins.

At 86, I am statistically at an age to easily contract this disease. You on the other hand have much better ways to fight it and continue on living your life. In essence it has cost you two precious years to help me survive.

Thank you, thank you, thank you.

Bob Wallace

Oak Bay

A lesson for us from the Ukrainians

For many of us who write about history, men like Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, women like the teachers, musicians, software engineers and mothers making Molotov cocktails and preparing to fight to the end alongside the bravest soldiers on earth — and the incredible citizens of Ukraine as a whole — are living through and taking part in events we have only read about in history books or heard of from our elders recalling events of their long ago youth in time of war.

Amid the horrors Russia is unleashing on Ukraine, there is, dare I say it in our post-modern era, something beautiful and pure and holy about Ukrainian bravery, gallantry, joie de vivre, qualities we in the West have been encouraged to see as symptomatic of some grievance-raising “ism,” but qualities in which many of us find inspiration in dark times all over the globe.

If Russia does overcome the people of Ukraine, it won’t break them, and they will have not one but a multitude of tigers by the tail.

And as they are to be pitied for having such a madman as “leader,” they are to be pitied further for what guerilla warfare will do to them as occupiers.

The people of Ukraine are proof to our cynical age that national pride and heroism and rock-ribbed faith are, in the hearts of a fearless populace, not jingles, but weapons of power and promise.

Love of country, as exemplified by Ukrainian people, is far more powerful than any dictatorship.

Grant Hayter-Menzies, biographer and historian


‘Freedom’ convoy is not original

So someone wants to organize a “freedom” convoy to occupy Victoria and liberate us from our tyrannical government.

Not a very original idea — Vladimir Putin already thought of it.

David Bly


Consider the oath taken in Canada

The recent letter “Convoy protesters little more than terrorists” quoted the American Oath of Allegiance.

Canadian Forces enrolees take the following oath on enrolment:

(1) Canadian citizens or a British subjects shall, on enrolment, take the following oath or solemn affirmation:

“I will be faithful and bear true allegiance to Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth the Second, Queen of Canada, Her heirs and successors according to law. So help me God.”

The words “So help me God” shall be omitted if a solemn affirmation is taken.

(2) Those not a Canadian citizen or a British subject:

“I will well and truly serve Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth the Second, Queen of Canada, Her heirs and successors according to law, in the Canadian Forces until lawfully released, that I will resist Her Majesty’s enemies and cause Her Majesty’s peace to be kept and maintained and that I will, in all matters pertaining to my service, faithfully discharge my duty. So help me God.”

The government was very specific in not using the military to control the Ottawa protests.

While section 275 of the National Defence Act provides for “aid to the civil power,” the Canadian Forces do not replace the civil power, and regulations allow only essential actions.

Gerald W. Pash


Tired of COVID? We’re tired of protests

If the protesters of COVID mandates want something to do, they could spend their idle time contributing to the effort to help the millions in Ukraine against this truly horrid war Putin started.

I find it appalling they think they have a reason to protest.

Our economy is doing relatively well now, because we had good leadership and continue with mandates. It’s the 90%-plus of vaccinated people who are keeping the naysayers from dying of rampant outbreaks and overrun hospitals.

I try to be a non-judgmental person, but this “convoy” business is getting old and tired.

Cathy Bhandar


We have time to prepare for the ‘Thug Buggies’

I hope the powers-that-be in Victoria are better prepared for the coming “Thug Buggy” convoy than the powers in Ottawa were.

If there are any plans at all, they have not been applied to the “Thug Buggies” that have been terrorizing James Bay every Saturday.

Passive statements about the right to protest don’t cut it when the so-called protests turn into the destruction of normal life for residents.

We are losing our civil-society expectations of proper behaviour among citizens living together in Victoria.

If there is a credible threat of a national convoy, as seen in the media, I fervently hope that a three-month occupation has the powers-that-be planning a defence of the rights of local citizens from such a disastrous event.

Bill Williamson


Caravan of ignorance could get lost

When the caravan of ignorance announced their latest travel plans to the west coast of our province, I was not surprised. Even a parade of bullies wants a break from a typical Canadian winter.

Despite what the residents of Ottawa had to endure; we may not need to panic. One of their harbingers stated the itinerary included Surrey and Victoria Island. Fun fact: The latter is in the Arctic archipelago, more than 2,300 km from Surrey.

Heather Siddon


High gas prices are an EV incentive

I want to extend my congratulations to Premier Horgan and his party for having the highest gasoline prices in North America, and furthermore for his plans to keep them there by imposing a scheduled carbon tax increase for April 1. It is obvious that folks will not give up their fossil-fuelled vehicles without the coercion provided by high prices.

Those who insist on having a personal vehicle, and can afford one, must be moved to electric vehicles immediately.

Terry Sturgeon

Oak Bay

Tesla chargers do exist north of Nanaimo

Tesla lists the Shelter Point Distillery as having a charger with four connectors. I have seen it. And it is halfway between Courtenay and Campbell River.

Jon Ackroyd

Campbell River

Hospice offices could go elsewhere

The restoration plans at Kings Community Nature Space are in jeopardy if Hospice builds on the upstream floodplain; improving the pathway to Royal Jubilee Hospital to increase accessibility to nature for all hospital patients, visitors and staff requires flood mitigation to succeed.

Twenty years of technical study, collaboration and local community planning have gone into the Bowker Creek Watershed Management Plan and blueprint. According to the Daylighting Feasibility Study and Companion Report, the Lansdowne South property plays a key role in long-term flood mitigation.

As one of few viable locations for a stormwater management facility along Bowker Creek, the property is critical to mitigating flooding downstream, and the ability of the watershed to adapt to the changing climate. The Hospice proposal would hamper the ability of this site to reduce downstream flooding, and is inconsistent with the community’s vision for the future of its watershed.

Island Health and Hospice have been communicating about increasing bed capacity across the region and where that expansion will occur. Sources within Island Health believe Hospice plans to construct corporate offices at the Lansdowne site, not patient beds.

Why not build administrative offices on developed land so we can protect remaining urban greenspace for all to enjoy? There is no need to choose one over the other.

Deanna Pfeifer


Land-sale opponents not opposed to hospice

A recent letter-writer felt that an area of land bordering Bowker Creek should indeed be used to build a hospice. But they implied that opposition to developing this green spaces equates to opposition to the hospice; nothing could be further from the truth.

The writer also stated that Victoria is “brimming” with green spaces, as though we shouldn’t be concerned about their being devoured by development.

Contrary to what the writer implies, those opposed to the sale of this land are full of compassion for both the living and the dying. It is in fact the health of the community that inspires opposition to developing green spaces, so vital to the mental and physical well-being of us all.

By all means we should endeavour to provide thorough, compassionate care for people in our community from cradle to grave. But surely there is a way ahead that uses already-developed land, and doesn’t further reduce the finite amount of precious green space we pass along to future generations.

Michael Erwin


Nurse practitioners can only do so much

A recent letter-writer suggested that nurse practitioners can help with the doctor crisis, and suggested that we should look in that direction for medical support when there is a dearth of doctors.

Let me put some context here, because in late January the TC published my own concerns, and the same letter was mailed to Adrian Dix.

To give the Ministry of Health administration their due, I received a comprehensive four-page response, drafted by director Noah Treacher. The entire four pages reads as a “policy document,” and it is precisely the general information that the ministry should be placing in the public domain.

One of the suggestions therein was for the patient to call the Health Link number, 811, which I had already done, and with success, I should add.

This does not substitute for a GP or a NP.

So, to Mr. Treacher’s suggestions that I should seek medical support from the B.C. College of Nurse Practitioners directory, to see if such a person may be accepting new patients.

Again, for context, I did my own research and found that there are five such NPs practising in Greater Victoria, while Vancouver has more than 20, not including the districts of North Van, Burnaby or New West.

What, then, are my chances of being included on a NP’s register here?

So far I found one who works two days a month and another who only works with cancer patients. No availability in either case. The third person called had a waitlist, but of course it was full and they were not taking further names. (I guess one has then to wait for the waitlist, to have someone pass on and make room.) The fourth of five called, had a published phone number that “was not assigned.” How does that work? Finally, the fifth of five approached only works with patients in long-term care.

The net result of this exercise is that there are now only three NPs to cover for the already appalling GP shortage. How does that work?

David E. Smiley


Find a consensus on the time switch

The question of whether to discontinue the practice of adopting daylight saving time in summer has raised its head again. The original reasons for its adoption have long become irrelevant, and there is general agreement that the time has come to abandon the silly practice.

The question now becomes whether to return to the original, natural turn of the day, where the sun is highest in the sky at noon, or the artificially distorted day that gives us overlong evenings in summer and dangerously dark mornings in winter.

The oft-quoted survey conducted by the B.C. government established that most people wanted to discontinue the change. What it did not do was ask was whether we preferred daylight saving or standard time.

Scientists and other public health and safety authorities suggest the best option is nature’s own standard time. Should not that be the goal of any forthcoming legislation? Let’s find a consensus on that before we go any further.

Tom Masters


Let’s keep changing our clocks

I really like the change back and forth between daylight saving time and standard time.

Beginning in March, I like the long late spring and summer evenings that come from the switch to daylight saving, and in the autumn, I like the idea of getting that “extra hour of sleep” in the mornings when we go back to standard.

It’s a fun system that works well; why not stay with the arrangement as it is?

Jean Jenkins


Even RV parks not exempt from spec tax

I thought that the Speculation and Vacancy Tax was applied only to empty and unused homes in buildings of various sorts. I have found that it also applies to private parking spaces in RV parks, where people store their campers, trailers and motor homes. Apparently the B.C. government thinks an empty small parking space in an RV park is depriving some people of a home.

Thank goodness I keep a trailer on my parking space. I wonder what else the government can find to tax.

Alan Porter



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