BC’s opposition parties say Children and Families Minister Mitzi Dean should resign after damning audits of the provincial ministry. Green Party MLA Adam Olsen says Dean should step down, calling for a “brick-by-brick” overhaul of the province’s child welfare system. Olsen says the NDP government hammered the previous administration about issues at the ministry, but won’t hold its own government to the same standard. The BC United Opposition also says the premier should remove Dean from the portfolio after details of the audit went public and revealed the failures to properly safeguard vulnerable children in government care.
Police in New Westminster say a student at a city high school was arrested Wednesday after being found in possession of a knife. Police say an officer was at New Westminster Secondary on Wednesday morning for an unrelated reason, and told there was a student with a knife who was causing a disturbance. New Westminster police say the officer tried to de-escalate the situation before arresting the student after a physical struggle. They say no one was injured during the arrest, and Sergeant Andrew Leaver says speculation about the incident wrongfully indicated the student had a gun.
Mounties in North Vancouver say they are looking for witnesses and footage as they investigate a hit-and-run that left a pedestrian with serious injuries on Wednesday night. North Vancouver RCMP say they were called to the scene after passersby found a North Vancouver man in his late 40s lying injured on the road. Officers say the man was taken to hospital, but the suspect vehicle had already fled the scene when they arrived. Constable Mansoor Sahak says the investigation is still fresh and investigators are seeking witnesses and dashcam footage from the area of Marine and Capilano Road just after 9 pm on October 18th.
Canada’s largest private sector union says it’s begun releasing union cards to Metro Vancouver workers at online retail giant Amazon. Unifor says Amazon employees can sign the cards as a step towards unionizing to allow them to negotiate better wages, benefits and working conditions. The union says it started a campaign to bring Amazon workers into the fold back in June. Gavin McGarrigle with Unifor says Amazon workers in New York paved the way for warehouse workers across North America, and hopes to duplicate the trend with Amazon employees in Vancouver.
Island Health’s chief medical health officer says British Columbia needs more overdose prevention sites to curb the toxic drug crisis that kills an average of half a dozen people a day. Dr. Reka Gustafson says drug treatment services should be treated like any other health treatment, and facilities need to be dignified in the face of continued stigma around drug use. She says overdose prevention sites should be offered along with supportive housing, pointing to evidence that there are fewer deaths when the two are coupled together at the same locations. Gustafson says debates around BC’s drug decriminalization measures have prompted uncomfortable conversations that have shone a needed spotlight on an issue that has claimed thousands of lives in recent years.
Pop singer Pink says she has to postpone two Vancouver performances this weekend due to a respiratory infection. Pink says her doctor has told her that the shows must not go on, but promoter Live Nation is working on rescheduling the dates. The singer was set to perform tonight and Saturday at Rogers Arena on her Trust Fall tour. The singer posted online that she looks forward to performing in Vancouver and apologized to fans for the postponements.