Lisa Beare is the incumbent NDP candidate running to be MLA for Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows again in the Oct. 24 election. (Special to The News)

Lisa Beare is the incumbent NDP candidate running to be MLA for Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows again in the Oct. 24 election. (Special to The News)

Candidate Q&A: Lisa Beare

She is a BC NDP hopeful running in the riding of Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows

Lisa Beare, NDP

Politician, age44

BIO:

I am proud to call Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows my home. This is where I grew up, started my family, and served on school board.

As a member of John Horgan’s team, I have worked hard to keep people safe in this pandemic and to build an economy that works for everyone, with better health care, good jobs, and affordability for families.

As MLA, I am so proud of what we have achieved for our community.

A new urgent and primary care centre is now an anchor tenant at Haney Place Mall.

Seven hundred new child care spaces have been created. A youth safe house will soon open. And our school district will be home to the first integrated child and youth mental health team in B.C.

Facebook: www.facebook.com/lisabeare

Twitter: @lisabeare

Website: lisabeare.bcndp.ca

Phone: 604-479-2118

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CANDIDATE Q&A:

To help voters make their choices on election day, the Maple Ridge News is asking local candidates a series of questions on issues of importance, inviting each candidate to participate.

They were asked to a ‘yes’, a ‘no,’ or a ‘don’t know’ (Y,N,D) response to EACH of the numbered questions for the grid published in the Oct. 15 edition of The News. Candidates were also invited to expand on ANY OR ALL of the questions (to a maximum of 250 words each), with one of their choice to be included in our print edition on Oct. 22. Here’s all their replies.

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1. Has supportive housing made a difference in addressing homelessness in Maple Ridge?

Answer: I have been working to address this issue for the last three years.

I know the citizens of Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows are compassionate and caring and want to help our most vulnerable while keeping our communities safe.

In addition to 112 units of modular housing, we ensured that Maple Ridge received 94 new units for families and seniors, 39 units of on reserve housing for Indigenous youth and elders, 49 units for middle-income families and individuals, 21 new homes for women fleeing violence, and we are bringing back a youth safe house.

We also successfully advocated for Maple Ridge to receive a new mobile, 24/7 assertive community treatment (ACT) team, designed to help those living with severe mental health challenges access treatment where they are at; a new youth Foundry; integrated child and youth mental health teams for our schools; and we are committing to building new treatment, recovery, detox and after-care beds if re-elected.

We’ve also hired more police officers, made changes to the Community Safety Act to target crack houses, and made it easier for police to seize the proceeds of crime – because people have a right to feel safe in their community.

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2. Are you in favour of government providing drug users with a safe supply to address the opioid overdose crisis?

Answer: Too many lives have been lost—our family, friends, coworkers, and neighbours.

Addressing the overdose crisis goes beyond providing safe prescription alternatives – which Andrew Wilkinson says he also supports. It means investing in all areas: prevention, harm reduction, enforcement, and treatment.

Prevention is key – we need to protect and support our kids.

The BC Liberals cut youth treatment beds just as the crisis was growing. We’re doubling youth treatment beds and will build new treatment and detox facilities – including one here in Maple Ridge where we’ve been clear that we need these services.

We are also working to deliver new supports, like a youth safe house, the Foundry, and integrated youth mental health teams in our schools, to ensure every child has the support they need, when they need it.

And while we’re supporting our community, we’re also working to stop the spread of the toxic drug supply by hiring more police officers, making changes to the Community Safety Act to target crack houses, and making it easier for the police to seize the proceeds of crime.

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3. Can Pitt Meadows count on highway improvements actually being realized at the Harris Road/Lougheed Highway intersection in the next four years?

Answer: Absolutely!

I started moving on this project on day one and that work is continuing right now.

The massive upgrade we have planned for the Lougheed Highway and Harris Road intersection is well underway.

Initial planning and preliminary engineering work has been done in collaboration with the City of Pitt Meadows and the public engagement process is set to begin this fall.

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4. With Golden Ears Provincial Park and others in the area at capacity during peak times, should camping and park expansion be a priority in the riding?

Answer: Yes.

Golden Ears Provincial Park is a jewel in our community, one that was very well used by all of us throughout this pandemic summer.

Last year, 65 campsites were added to Golden Ears park and there’s more to do.

In our platform, we are committed to expanding B.C.’s provincial parks by creating even more new campgrounds, trails, and protected areas while increasing funding to improve infrastructure and protect park ecosystems.

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5. Do you support the expansion of $10 per day daycare?

Answer: As a mom, I know personally how hard it is to find safe, affordable childcare for my daughter. For me, this is one of the most important issues facing our economy and our province.

Since forming government, we expanded access to safe, affordable childcare, creating more than 700 new childcare spaces between these two ridings.

$21 million has been invested in fee reductions, which is saving families up to $19,000 a year. That is 21 million more dollars being spent in our communities supporting businesses.

We also supported our early childhood educators with wage enhancements and offered more post-secondary training spaces to fill the need.

We are building on the amazing work we’ve already done. And we are committed to expanding our $10 per day spaces to more families, so parents can save thousands of dollars each month.

We will continue to ensure childcare spaces are a priority and will work towards providing universal access to before and after school care on school grounds so parents know their kids are safe at one place for the full work day.

Investing in childcare is good for our children, good for families, and good for our economy.

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6. During a second wave of COVID-19 would you support closing schools?

Answer: When candidates for election were presented with this survey, the instructions within requested we choose “Yes,” “No,” or “Don’t Know” as our answer. It was explained that those without answers would be left blank, and that the full text of our long form answers to these questions would be published on the website.

As such, for many of these we chose to leave blank answers. Many questions presented here are complex ones, and we believe that voters deserve more than a one-word answer. This is one of those examples.

COVID 19 has impacted all of us.

We are all worried about our loved ones and what our futures will look like. Throughout the pandemic, our government and the people of British Columbia worked together to flatten the curve by making choices based in public health science.

People have trusted Dr. Bonnie Henry and her leadership throughout this pandemic, and we will continue to follow her advice to keep British Columbians safe.

These decisions must be grounded in science and led by the public health professionals and researchers who are working extremely hard to address this crisis we are all in together.

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7. During a second wave of COVID-19 would you support closing businesses?

Answer: When candidates for election were presented with this survey, the instructions within requested we choose “Yes,” “No,” or “Don’t Know” as our answer. It was explained that those without answers would be left blank, and that the full text of our long form answers to these questions would be published on the website.

As such, for many of these we chose to leave blank answers. Many questions presented here are complex ones, and we believe that voters deserve more than a one-word answer. This is one of those examples.

Just like the question on school closures, I will reiterate that our government will continue to take Dr. [Bonnie] Henry’s advice. She’s led us through this pandemic and we’re going to continue to follow her advice to keep British Columbians safe.

We know that the best economic plan is a strong public health response and following Dr. Henry’s advice is the best way to keep businesses open to support people.

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8. Is government spending the best way to stimulate the economy as it recovers from the global pandemic?

Answer: When candidates for election were presented with this survey, the instructions within requested we choose “Yes,” “No,” or “Don’t Know” as our answer. It was explained that those without answers would be left blank, and that the full text of our long form answers to these questions would be published on the website.

As such, for many of these we chose to leave blank answers. Many questions presented here are complex ones, and we believe that voters deserve more than a one-word answer. This is one of those examples.

We have to remember that people are the economy, and the most important thing we can do for our economy is to keep people safe and healthy through the pandemic.

By improving our local healthcare system – with an urgent primary care centre in Haney Place Mall, a COVID assessment centre on Laity Street, and two primary care networks – our healthcare system is becoming one you can count on. With the BC NDP’s new $3 billion recovery investment fund we can invest in infrastructure our community needs and hire local workers to do it, bringing good jobs home – like we’re doing with our commitment to a full rebuild of Pitt Meadows Secondary School.

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9. Should government divert funding away from policing, and toward social and mental health services?

Answer: We need to continue to prosecute criminal elements, and crack down on things like money laundering that is helping fuel crime and the overdose crisis.

That’s why we hired more police officers, made changes to the Community Safety Act to target crack houses, and made it easier for police to seize the proceeds of crime – because people have a right to feel safe in their community.

We also need mental and social health services so people can get the care they need and be treated as patients.

That’s why we successfully advocated for Maple Ridge to receive a new mobile, 24/7 assertive community treatment (ACT) team, designed to help those living with severe mental health challenges access treatment where they are at; a new youth Foundry; integrated child and youth mental health teams for our schools, and are committing to building new treatment, recovery, detox and after-care beds if re-elected.

We are doubling youth treatment beds here in our community – taking us from 104 to 247. And if we are re-elected, we will build new treatment and detox facilities, including one here in Maple Ridge where the city has been clear that we need these services.

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10. Should the province provide B.C. residents with a universal basic income?

Answer: The crux of the issue is affordability and making sure our economy works for everyone.

B.C. is expensive and it’s tough to balance a household budget here.

The BC Liberals gave tax breaks to the top two per cent and made everyone else pay for it. MSP doubled, ICBC rates spiked by 36 per cent. Hydro bills went up 87 per cent.

We’ve been making different choices.

We cancelled the BC Liberal tax cuts for the wealthy and gave it back to people. We eliminated MSP fees and the tolls on the Golden Ears Bridge.

If elected, we will help those who have been struggling financially through the pandemic, with a one-time $1,000 recovery benefit for families and $500 for individuals, and will start a child opportunity benefit that provides up to $2,600/year for a family with two kids.

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OTHER LOCAL CANDIDATE Q&As:

Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows riding

Candidate Q&A: Cheryl Ashlie

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Maple Ridge-Mission riding

Candidate Q&A: Matt Trenholm

Candidate Q&A: Chelsa Meadus

Candidate Q&A: Bob D’Eith

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________________________________

• If there is more to this issue, please let us know about it. Email us at editor@mapleridgenews.com. We look forward to hearing from you. In the meantime, like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter.

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