Warning: Some of the details in this story may be disturbing to readers.
The passenger in a truck involved in a fatal hit and run cried as he described seeing the fear in a gas station employee’s eyes and the colour drain from her face before she was run over.
Braydon Brown jumped into the back seat when Joshua Cody Mitchell fled the parking lot at the Calgary Centex station in June 2015.
Witnesses to fatal Calgary gas-and-dash testify on Day 2 of Joshua Mitchell trial
Trial underway for man accused of killing Calgary mother in hit-and-run gas-and-dash: ‘She was trying to right a wrong’
Mitchell, who is 22, is on trial charged with second-degree murder.
Jury reminded to keep ‘open mind’ in trial for man accused in fatal gas-and-dash hit-and-run
Mitchell is charged with second-degree murder.
Maryam Rashidi, 35, chased the truck out into traffic and climbed onto the hood in an attempt to get the driver to come back and pay for $113 worth of fuel.
“She started banging on the window and said, ‘You didn’t pay,’” Brown, who is now 18, told court Tuesday.
“He said, ‘If she gets in front of me I’m just going to go.’ As soon as she got onto the hood, I told Josh to shake her off. Then he put the truck into reverse and tried stepping on the gas quickly to try to get her to fall back off the hood.”
Ashtiana Rashidi, also known as Maryam, succumbed to her injuries on June 9, 2015 after a hit and run at the gas station where she worked in Calgary.
The driver then swerved around the vehicle in front of them, causing Rashidi to fall to the ground, where she was run over by the truck’s front and rear dual tires.
“I could see the look of fear in her eyes as soon as he put it in drive. They got big and then her face went white,” Brown said as he tried to hold back tears.
“I felt the boomp, boomp, boomp in the truck. I looked out the back window and all I seen is her body rolling and it looked like her head exploded. It looked like she had coughed up blood while she was rolling.”
Confession by accused killer Joshua Mitchell played in fatal gas-and-dash case
Brown testified before the seven-man, five-woman jury that Mitchell didn’t stop and drove away quickly since two other cars were following them.
That day still haunts him, he said.
“I still have nightmares about it,” Brown said.
Mitchell’s lawyer Kim Ross suggested they never intended to hurt anyone.
“I’m going to suggest to you that the intention was like any other gas-and-go — to get gas, fill up that truck and go. At no time was there any conversation in that truck about hurting somebody?” asked Ross.
“No,” replied Brown.
Rashidi never regained consciousness. She suffered multiple head injuries and died two days later.
Brown was the Crown’s final witness. The defence did not call any witnesses.
The first tonne of marketable potash is expected to be produced at the end of June from the first new mine in Saskatchewan in more than 40 years.
After five years of construction, German fertilizer company K+S is opening the new mine near the village of Bethune, about 70 kilometres north of Regina.
K+S says the first potash shipment by freight train will take place from the mine to its port facility in Vancouver and from there, it will be exported to customers mainly in South America and Asia.
Inside of the new potash mine #sask pic.twitter杭州桑拿/1NUuX7Rs5w
— Christa Dao (@ChristaDao) May 2, 2017
The company also says it expects to achieve its desired production capacity of two million tonnes by the end of this year.
Norbert Steiner, chairman of the board of management of K+S, says the Bethune mine enables the company to participate in future market growth, reduce average production costs and strengthen international competitiveness.
The Bethune mine is the largest single project in the history of K+S and the company says it creates more than 400 permanent jobs in Canada.
K+S Potash one step closer to production with rail car delivery
K+S Potash Canada mine near Bethune, Sask. nears completion
K+S Potash to hold job fair in Sussex, hiring 100 people for Saskatchewan mine
Arcade Fire’s Regine Chassagne and Win Butler are being recognized by Quebec’s government for their roles as cultural ambassadors for the province.
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The vocalists are among 18 honourees set to receive this year’s Companion of Quebec’s Order of Arts and Letters, a recognition for “outstanding contributions to the diversity and vitality of Quebec culture.”
The event will be held at Montreal’s Phi Centre on May 29.
READ MORE: Arcade Fire lead New Orleans parade to honour David Bowie
Other recipients include Roger Frappier, producer of numerous influential Quebecois films, including “Jesus of Montreal,” “La Grande Séduction” and “The Decline of the American Empire”; and children’s entertainer Kim Yaroshevskaya, who also starred in the CBC drama “Home Fires” in the early 1980s.
Created in 2015, the recognition focuses on artists, writers and other patrons of the arts.
READ MORE: Montreal band Arcade Fire releases anti-Trump music before presidential inauguration
Past honourees include the late musician Leonard Cohen as well as directors Denys Arcand, Denis Villeneuve and Xavier Dolan.
Before Bozanna Balint-Maltais’ daughter was born, she was told her child had meconium aspiration syndrome, a common respiratory condition that makes it difficult for newborns to breathe.
“I remember feeling like it was my fault she was sick,” the 18-year-old mother tells Global News.
“If I tried harder for my doctor to induce me earlier, she wouldn’t be this way. If I didn’t eat certain foods, maybe it could have been avoided — all these possibilities ran through my head and I just cried.”
Balint-Maltais is one of many mothers who live with postpartum depression (PPD), a type of depression that could start during pregnancy or anytime after birth.
WATCH: How to recognize the signs of postpartum depression
May 3 is World Maternal Mental Health Day, a day to recognize how common PPD and other mental health illnesses are for new mothers.
Mark Henick, national director of strategic initiatives at the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA), says although statistics show one in five women experience PPD, it is far more common than that.
“Screening for PPD is not as universal as it should be; almost every woman is at risk,” he tells Global News. “Anytime there is change — and childbirth is a big change — there is a risk [of PPD].”
Henick adds one of the biggest reasons women may not reach out for help or even realize they have PPD is because of society’s views on childbirth. Namely, women are expected to be happy when they’ve had a child.
READ MORE: Chrissy Teigen opens up about her battle with postpartum depression
He adds that women often feel ashamed or embarrassed, and are often labelled as unfit or unloving parents.
“Some women come out of it on their own, and some slide into a state and don’t come out of it at all,” he says. “There is no shame in seeking help.”
Those first few months
Balint-Maltais gave birth to her baby girl Melody in May 2016. The Ottawa woman says when she talked about feeling depressed to the people around her, she was told she was being lazy or was simply too tired.
“It was horrible,” she says. “My daughter’s father had left me when our baby was one-week old. It really pushed me over the edge and my world crumbled. I wanted to die. I had no will to live anymore and for the first time I felt absolutely nothing but sadness when I looked at my baby girl.”
Bozanna Balint-Maltais says because of her PPD, sometimes she felt like, “dying.”
Over the year, Balint-Maltais’ PPD got worse and she began having suicidal thoughts. She was admitted to Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario’s psychiatric ward (she was 17 at the time) and received counselling from officials. But with little improvement, she says she continued to talk about PPD with her mother. She’s only been feeling like herself again in the last two months.
“This is 100-per-cent temporary. There is nothing wrong with asking for help or admitting that you just can’t do it all right now. You need to help yourself before helping others.”
Recognizing the signs
According to CMHA, signs of PPD include feeling sad, worthless, hopeless, guilty or anxious. Some mothers may feel angry, irritable or unfocused when it comes to day-to-day tasks.
“It can be hard to concentrate, learn new things or make decisions. Depression can change the way people eat and sleep, and many people experience physical health problems,” the organization notes on its website.
READ MORE: These 3 nutritional supplements can help combat the ‘baby blues’
And it is quite common for people with PPD to think they don’t love their child, or have scary thoughts around harming themselves or their baby. While it’s rare for a parent to actually act on those impulses, the organization says it is nonetheless a serious situation that requires urgent medical care. They also advise calling 911 or your local crisis line if you suspect that a loved one is in danger.
Who is at risk?
Henick adds while most women are at risk, those who are homeless, struggling with their finances, unemployed, or from racialized or LGBTQ communities are at higher risk. Women with previous or family mental health history, or who have suffered trauma from sexual abuse, for example, are also susceptible.
But PPD isn’t only harmful to mothers. It can also put a strain on partners.
“It can be challenging because many partners might find it difficult to get through to that person, they may seem closed off or become irritable,” Henick says. “But often, they are just sad.”
READ MORE: ‘There is so much shame’: mother shares painful experience with PPD and pressure to breastfeed
Bee Quammie, a 33-year-old freelance writer in Oshawa, Ont., says although she knew about PPD after working in healthcare, she still had trouble coping.
Quammie, who has a two-year-old daughter and a second child due in August, says she didn’t tell anyone about how she felt.
Bee Quammie says her PPD lasted for about six months.
“My family held a bit of an intervention at one point, and I started to open up to my husband and my mom,” she tells Global News. “My mom told me at that point that she had PPD when she had me as well.”
What the healthcare system could do better
Quammie says in the beginning, she would have “secret Google sessions” to see what was wrong with her, and over time went to counselling. But she says a lot more can be done.
“Our healthcare system needs to find a way to particularly reach out to different cultural groups to increase discussions around PPD in a culturally-sensitive and inclusive way,” she says.
Bee Quammie says the best advice she got about PPD was to never keep things to herself.
“Many of us suffer because we aren’t supposed to talk about issues, or because we [aren’t supposed to] have those problems — but many of us do, and we need to know it’s OK to admit that and to have access to relevant help.”
Aprill Coleman, mother of 5, says we don’t talk about PPD enough.
Aprill Coleman, a mother-of-five based in Jackson, Miss., says because she had her first child at 17, she had no idea what PPD was or how to cope with it.
“As I got older, I tried anti-depressants, and in the end, I learned to cope by emotionally eating,” the 33-year-old says. “No one gave me advice in the beginning.”
Coleman says a helpful tool would be classes not only for moms-to-be but also for people in their support system like partners, children, family and friends.
READ MORE: U of C study shows positive support around breastfeeding reduces post-partum depression
“What you are dealing with is not your fault. Don’t be ashamed to ask for help. Call a friend, your spouse or a family member and ask for help. But please do not suffer in silence. You are not a failure.”
Where to get help
If you or someone you know is in crisis and needs help, resources are available. In case of an emergency, please call 911 for immediate help.
The Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention, Depression Hurts and Kids Help Phone 1-800-668-6868 all offer ways of getting help if you, or someone you know, may be suffering from mental health issues.
Conservative MP Scott Reid was caught on camera Tuesday morning using some distinctly unparliamentary language after a committee meeting was abruptly adjourned on Parliament Hill.
“I said ‘point of order’ before you pulled that sh-t,” Reid told committee chair and Liberal MP Larry Bagnell as Bagnell rose to leave the room.
“We are not adjourned or suspended. That’s bullsh-t, Mr. Chair. That is bullsh-t!”
READ MORE: Liberals back down on House reform, but debates to be halted more often
Reid’s voice was loud enough to be caught by microphones in the room before the usual “in-recess” music interrupted the broadcast.
Tensions within the Procedure and House Affairs committee have boiled over in recent weeks as a result of the government’s efforts to change some of the rules of the House of Commons.
The committee had been asked to study a discussion paper put forward by the Liberals that suggested, among other things, eliminating Friday sittings, introducing e-votes and launching a prime minister’s question period.
The opposition felt the government was trying to ram those changes through, and members of the committee filibustered in an effort to delay the process. The Liberals have since dropped the more contentious recommendations, and are planning to table a motion to pass some of the others in the House of Commons.
Tuesday’s gathering and the filibuster itself were therefore brought to an abrupt end as Bagnell adjourned the committee meeting.
This is the most grotesque abuse of a chairman’s authority I’ve seen, in 16 years around this place.
— Scott Reid (@ScottReidCPC) May 2, 2017
Following his angry outburst, Reid told a reporter for the National Post that Bagnell had previously said that majority consent would be required to adjourn a meeting. He then tweeted that it was a “grotesque abuse of a chairman’s authority.” Reid now wants government House leader Bardish Chagger to appear before the committee.
In light of events, I put on notice this AM the following motion for @BardishKW to appear soon at #PROC: https://t.co/BzXxYSFKAa #cdnpoli
An organic health food store in downtown Edmonton is closing its doors.
Earth’s General Store posted on its website that it’s given notice to its landlords that it will shut down its location on 101 Avenue and 104 Street on Oct. 31.
“It is with an extremely heavy heart that I have to announce that we are in the position where we are closing our downtown store on Oct. 31, 2017,” owner Michael Kalmanovitch wrote.
“I tried to squeeze another month before giving our notice to see if things improved but had to finally resign to the reality – things are not improving and I have to minimize our losses.”
READ MORE: Local store issues ultimatum to downtown Edmonton: ‘use us or lose us’
In January, Earth’s General Store issued an ultimatum to the community that it would close its downtown location if business didn’t pick up, and that didn’t happen, according to Kalmanovitch’s online post.
“When Sobeys closed down I was concerned that we would not be able to meet the demand for good quality groceries at fair prices and offering organic foods. This demand not materialize,” Kalmanovitch wrote.
“The downtown store has never made money. It always ran at a deficit. It was propped up by the Whyte Avenue store but extra funds from Whyte have diminished and I am simply running out of money.”
READ MORE: Edmonton downtown development focus for city and business community
Kalmanovitch apologized to his employees and the downtown community, who he said he “failed.”
“I am not a businessman. I am a person that does business. I think a ‘good’ business person would have done things a bit differently since their value system has a different focus and that a ‘good’ business person would have seen the writing on the wall a while ago and pulled out of this venture but I see more than just the return on investment of a financial return,” Kalmanovitch wrote.
Kalmanovitch said there is a possibility of opening Earth’s General Store at a different location but sales will need to increase for that to happen.
Boston Red Sox President Sam Kennedy is apologizing for fans at Fenway Park taunting Baltimore Orioles centre fielder Adam Jones with racial slurs.
Kennedy also apologized Tuesday for a fan throwing peanuts at Jones during Monday night’s game. He said the organization is “sickened by the conduct of an ignorant few.”
Jones, who is black, said he was “called the N-word a handful of times” in quotes reported by USA Today Sports and The Boston Globe.
Statement from the #RedSox regarding Adam Jones incident at Fenway Park: https://t.co/GxMgzEnWih
— Boston Red Sox (@RedSox) May 2, 2017
“It’s unfortunate that people need to resort to those type of epithets to degrade another human being,” Jones said.
Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker, in a tweet Tuesday, also called the behaviour by fans “unacceptable and shameful.”
“This is not what Massachusetts & Boston are about,” the tweet said.
READ MORE: Blue Jays beer-throwing suspect charged with mischief
Jones, a five-time All-Star, said he has been the subject of racist heckling in Boston’s ballpark before, but this was one of the worst cases of fan abuse he has heard in his 12-year career, according to USA Today Sports.
USA Today Sports reported that Red Sox officials confirmed that a fan threw a bag of peanuts at Jones and was ejected from the stadium.
“It’s pathetic,” Jones said. “It’s called a coward. What they need to do is that instead of kicking them out of the stadium, they need to fine them 10 grand, 20 grand, 30 grand. Something that really hurts somebody.”
The Red Sox said they are reviewing what happened at the game, but that any spectator behaving poorly forfeits the right to be in the ballpark and could be subject to further action.
The Orioles’ 5-2 victory marked the latest testy game between the AL East rivals this season, including a dustup in Baltimore a week ago.
Statement from Commissioner Rob Manfred. pic.twitter杭州桑拿/lCUNbv9eyc
— MLB (@MLB) May 2, 2017
In the teams’ previous meeting at Camden Yards, Boston reliever Matt Barnes sent a pitch that whizzed behind Manny Machado’s head and hit the slugger’s bat. Barnes was suspended four games and fined.
Machado had rankled the Red Sox with a hard slide into second baseman Dustin Pedroia’s left leg two days earlier. Pedroia missed a handful of games.
Orioles pitcher Dylan Bundy hit Mookie Betts near the left hip with a fastball Monday night, prompting loud boos.
OTTAWA – Canada’s free-trade pact with Europe is poised to produce “modest” economic gains that work out to an average annual income boost of $220 per Canadian, the federal budget watchdog says in a new report.
The parliamentary budget officer released a study Tuesday that estimates the trade deal would have lifted Canada’s overall economic output in 2015 by 0.4 per cent or $7.9 billion, had it been implemented at the time.
READ MORE: EU expects Canada to ratify CETA in coming weeks, official says
Canadian exports of goods to the EU would have increased $4 billion, services would have been up $2.2 billion and investment would have grown by $3.1 billion, the analysis found.
But the report did put the overall projected improvement into perspective by noting that Canada boasts a $2-trillion economy.
“CETA will lead to some gains for Canada, but they will be modest,” the report said, referring to the deal’s full name: the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement.
“The work outlined in this report projects a small, but positive, overall effect on Canada’s economy … Starting from relatively low levels, exports of goods will increase by 9.3 per cent and services by 14 per cent.”
READ MORE: Trudeau says CETA will benefit all Canadians, experts not so sure
The PBO based its analysis on 2015 because projecting into the future would have been more difficult. It was also the most recent year for which a complete set of economic data was available.
The budget office predicted some Canadian sectors will likely see slower growth under the agreement, including some dairy and agricultural products, textiles and some machinery and manufactured goods.
On the other hand, the report predicts sectors including transport and motor vehicles, some metals and wheat will likely grow more quickly.
The report focused on the parts of the agreement that it said could be studied analytically.
WATCH: Canada-EU CETA deal impact on Canadian businesses and consumers (Feb. 2017)
The areas analyzed included tariff reductions on goods, reduction in trade barriers for services and intellectual property as it relates to royalty payments for patented drugs. The report also examined the overall impact that the deal might have on Canada’s gross domestic product through investment.
“With the signing of CETA, questions arise concerning the magnitude of the benefits and impacts, as well as how they will be distributed,” said the report by Jean-Denis Frechette’s office.
“Liberalizing trade is intended to bring benefits through greater specialization … but the impact on sectors could be uneven.”
Parliament is expected to ratify CETA in the coming months. Once approved, about 90 per cent of the deal would come into force under provisional application.
The deal is expected to come into force amid concerns in corporate Canada over protectionist policy proposals under discussion in the United States.
READ MORE: Cheaper wine, cheese and avocados: How trade deals impact the price of your favourite things
Frechette’s office predicted that strengthening business ties with the EU will make Canadians a little less dependent on their existing trade partners, predicting that Canada’s annual exports to the U.S. could decline by 0.4 per cent or $1.4 billion, while exports to the rest of the world could fall by 0.7 per cent or about $384 million.
Last year, Canada exported about $39.8 billion worth of merchandise to the EU, making it Canada’s second-largest export destination, the report said. In comparison, Canadian merchandise exports to China were about $21 billion.
“But this is still only a tenth of the exports that go to the United States,” the PBO said.
“Canada’s sales of oil and gas to the United States alone are worth more than all the goods and services it sells to the EU.”
Speaking in Fort McMurray one year after the wildfire forced a massive evacuation, Alberta’s premier called Wednesday “a sombre anniversary” while the region’s mayor said it was also a time to “reflect on the remarkable experiences of the past year.”
Community events were quiet and respectful — something the region’s officials heard was how residents wanted to mark the day.
“When you have a milestone event like this one, the importance of recounting the progress that’s actually being made is helpful in some people’s recovery, ignoring the date entirely for some people who just don’t want to face it as a reminder is another thing that’s important to respect,” Wood Buffalo Mayor Melissa Blake said. “So, the low-key events that we have staged down at MacDonald Island are supportive of the desires of the community.
“To offer these different things, whether it’s spiritual or cultural or artistic or yoga at five in the morning… Everybody needs to do their own thing to mark this day.”
Premier Rachel Notley also noted the day was one to mourn the loss of two young people killed in a crash on Highway 881, fleeing the fires: Emily Ryan, 15, and Aaron Hodgson, 19.
READ MORE: Fort McMurray triplet killed fleeing fires was daughter of deputy fire chief
“We also remember all that the fire took from people: their homes, their baby photos and all the cherished belongings that helped to anchor so many cherished memories.”
Watch below: Premier Rachel Notley marks 1 year since Fort McMurray wildfire: ‘This is a very difficult day’
“This is also an opportunity to extend our gratitude to our brave emergency responders, whether they were from Alberta or came to help from beyond our borders.”
The premier said everywhere she goes, she is asked about Fort McMurray.
“Everywhere, the sentiment is the same… Your province is very, very proud of you. People from the U.S. to China to Japan are inspired by the bravery, strength and resilience this community did show and continues to show.
“Albertans have long known the people of Fort McMurray are as caring and resilient as they come,” Notley said. “The evacuation proved that to the world.”
READ MORE: Fort McMurray wildfire victims praise Canadian Red Cross’ help: ‘Thank you to the nation’
Blake also spoke about how overwhelmed she was by the support of Canadians, through the Red Cross, to help people that were complete strangers.
“We thank you from the bottom of our hearts,” the mayor said.
“To all the Canadians from coast to coast to coast who opened their hearts and homes to us, we will forever be in your debt. During the darkest time in our history, these overwhelming acts of kindness and compassion sustained us.”
“Strangers housed us, fed us, clothed us, even filled our tanks with gas… Our entire community has been personally touched.”
Watch below: Mayor Melissa Blake marks 1 year since Fort McMurray wildfire
Roughly 20 per cent of the community has decided not to return to Fort McMurray since the fire. However, Notley said the school population showed a 94 per cent retention rate as of September.
When asked about calls for another access route out of the city, the premier said the transportation ministry was working with the municipality on possible options. The Alberta government has already dedicated $5 million towards a feasibility study, with the municipality also putting in $5 million.
“That’s the first step,” Notley said, adding she anticipates the study will begin “very soon.”
Notley and Blake were joined by several emergency officials, including the municipality’s new fire chief, RCMP supervisor, and members of the Recovery Task Force.
READ MORE: ‘We pulled it off’: Suncor airport supervisor recounts converting hangar into hospital 1 year after Fort McMurray wildfire
Both speakers stressed the importance of reaching out for help processing emotions and grief in the wake of the disaster.
“I’ve spoken to many residents who are dreading this day,” Blake said. “Others will want to mark it privately.
“Mental health matters and it is OK to reach out.”
Watch below: Family of teens killed fleeing Fort McMurray wildfire reflects on past year
READ MORE: ‘It’s eerie’: Thousands of residents return home after Fort McMurray wildfire
Notley and Blake reiterated that progress is being made but there is still a long road ahead.
“Yes we have come a long way and it’s encouraging to see,” Blake said. “But it’s still early days.”
“We know the journey is not over,” Notley added. “We are still with you.
“Wood Buffalo and Fort McMurray, you are strong.”
For complete coverage of Fort McMurray: The Road Back, click here.
Watch below: Fort McMurray wildfire one year later: hear from residents and the premier
MERRITT, B.C. – British Columbia Liberal Leader Christy Clark appears to be betting that the simmering softwood dispute with the United States is fertile ground for votes as she increased the pressure in the trade spat Tuesday, promising a hefty carbon tax on U.S. thermal coal.
Clark said she would tax the coal that’s shipped through the province’s ports to make it uncompetitive and defend workers from the policies of U.S. President Donald Trump.
“Now is the right time to do it, the right time to send a strong message to the Trump administration and U.S. lumber barons that we will not back down in the face of their aggressive attacks on workers here in British Columbia,” said Clark, who has pushed hard on the issue in the latter stages of the provincial election campaign.
FULL COVERAGE: BC Election 2017
If the federal government doesn’t act on her request to ban the coal, she said the Liberals would develop regulations that impose a carbon price of about $70 per tonne if they are re-elected in the May 9 election.
“The levy would make thermal coal shipped through British Columbia utterly uncompetitive in the global market,” she said while campaigning in Merritt.
The plan escalates a threat she first made last week after the American’s imposed an average duty of 20 per cent on Canadian softwood lumber.
The coal moves through B.C. ports to be shipped to China, but Clark says it’s among the dirtiest and most carbon-intense methods to generate power and heat. About 6.6 million tonnes of thermal coal was exported through B.C. ports last year, 94 per cent of that came from the United States.
NDP Leader John Horgan said that if Clark was serious about thermal coal she could have done something about it years ago, accusing her of only reacting now because of the election.
“I think this is reckless, it’s irresponsible,” he said at a campaign stop in Kamloops. “If we don’t get a good deal on softwood lumber, it’s going to mean thousands of jobs are at risk and the only job Christy Clark cares about is hers.”
About 30 supporters gathered on a bank of the South Thomson River to meet Horgan, who said if each of them represented 1,000 people that would total the 30,000 people in the city the NDP says don’t have a family doctor.
“That’s a crisis. It hasn’t been addressed because of 16 years of neglect by the B.C. Liberals,” said Horgan.
The NDP would invest in public health care, including building a new patient care tower at Royal Inland Hospital in Kamloops, and urgent care centres across the province to fill the gap between walk-in clinics and clogged emergency rooms, Horgan said.
“It’s time we had a government that’s working for you, and in seven days we’re going to get that,” he said.
Liberal Health Minister Terry Lake, who isn’t running for re-election in Kamloops-North Thompson, showed up at Horgan’s campaign stop. The NDP has not won the riding since 1991, but Horgan said he thinks they can be successful there.
Lake said the NDP is exaggerating when it says 30,000 people lack a family doctor in Kamloops, but added access to primary care is a challenge.
“There’s no magic bullet that’s going to solve this problem overnight and I think it’s disingenuous for Mr. Horgan or anyone else to claim that they can do that,” he said.
Horgan’s campaign cited a media story from last November quoting telemedicine provider Medview MD for the 30,000 figure.
As Lake spoke to reporters, NDP supporters carried signs that said “700,000 without a family doctor,” a reference to the total number of people the party says lack a primary care physician.
“Hire more nurses!” said Diane Lingren, a nurse with 10 years of experience, wearing her blue scrubs.
“We are,” responded Lake.
“No you’re not. You’re filling vacant spaces,” she said, shaking her head.
Lingren said nurses are working short-staffed and under-supported with patients being treated in hallways. People look at the wards and say, “Oh, it’s just like ‘M.A.S.H.’ in here,” she said.
Green party Leader Andrew Weaver campaigned in Vancouver on Tuesday, attacking the NDP for making “disturbing” multibillion-dollar promises without saying how it would be paid for.
The Liberals and NDP have also failed on climate change and getting the province ready for the new economy, he said.
“We recognize that if we want to be leaders in tech innovation we must also embrace the tech innovation that we want to be leaders in,” he said.
“B.C. Liberals have no plan, the B.C. NDP have a plan to come up with a plan to develop a plan, and the B.C. Greens actually have a plan for a prosperous future.”