OTTAWA — Member of Parliament Gord Johns (Courtenay-Alberni) rose in the House of Commons today to ask the Prime Minister when he will finally take action to prevent overdose deaths in Canada.
“The Public Health Agency of Canada reported an 88% increase in opioid related deaths last year,” MP Johns said, “The Prime Minister has repeatedly said we need to listen to public health officials to get through the pandemic but when it comes to the overdose crisis, he is ignoring those same health officials.”
Victoria-BC: Changes to federal funding distribution for language revitalization programs has raised concern for the survival of programming at the Victoria Native Friendship Centre (VNFC).
The VNFC offers language classes to meet the needs of its diverse Indigenous community, including Nuučaan̓uɫ, Nihiyaw (Cree - Y dialect and TH dialect), Nedut’en Carrier, Dene, Dakota, and Anishinaabe.
Johns praised Nuu-chah-nulth elders, educators and learners, who he said are making tremendous progress towards revitalizing their Indigenous language, in spite of the uncertainty of federal funding from one year to the next.
“Now their language program funding may be cut by up to 57 per cent because of a newly proposed federal heritage funding formula. The formula fails to recognize that British Columbia has the highest concentration of Indigenous language and cultural diversity of any province or territory in the country, with 35 distinct languages and more than 90 dialects,” said Johns in his statement.