Letters: Maple Ridge ‘underserved’
Editor, The News:
I have only recently moved to Maple Ridge, but I have been carefully following the ambulance situation here.
I don’t very much care for long drawn out approaches to problems, so I offer simple figures to show how Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows not only need an extra ambulance, but how even one extra is less than fairness demands we should be given.
The population of Langley is 130,000. The population of Maple Ridge is 95,000. This gives a combined population of 225,000 serviced by seven ambulances in Langley and two in Maple Ridge.
The 95,000 people represents 42.2 per cent of the Langley/Maple Ridge population and yet we have only 22.2 per cent of the available ambulances, leaving Langley with 77.8 per cent for only 57.8 per cent of the population.
If Langley lost one ambulance to Maple Ridge, then Maple Ridge would have 33.3 per cent of the ambulances and Langley 66.7 per cent.
We would still be disadvantaged by an enormous degree by comparison. But from everything I have read, Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows residents would be quite content with this distribution.
I think B.C. Health Emergency Services has played on the good nature of our community for far too long and it is now time for change.
Our MP and MLAs have issued glib statements on this matter, but have failed to show any true leadership.
I call upon them now to voice real opinions on the unfair treatment of Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows residents and demand that we are given a third ambulance.
Editor, The News:
Recently, B.C. Emergency Health Services announced that an additional eight ambulances would be added to the Lower Mainland.
While we are disappointed that Maple Ridge is not receiving one of these new ambulances, we will still benefit from these added resources.
It is important to remember that ambulances are not constrained by municipal boundaries.
BCEHS operates on a regional deployment model, which allows for resources from one community to be redeployed to another to assist in an increase in local calls.
This means that the added ambulances in Langley and Surrey will be available to assist those currently serving Maple Ridge should the need arise.
BCEHS has also committed to monitoring call volumes and response times in Maple Ridge over the next two months, and to meet with Mayor Read to go over their findings.
We would like you know that we hear the concerns over adequate ambulance service and that both of us are working with Health Minister Terry Lake and BCEHS to ensure that Maple Ridge has the ambulance services that it needs.
We want the best service for our residents and will continue to be strong advocates for Maple Ridge.
Doug Bing, Marc Dalton
Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows and Maple Ridge-Mission