Pb published Provincial Election Accountability Assembly a success! in Home 2017-04-06 12:18:44 -0700
Over 800 delegates heard commitments from provincial party leaders. Our Provincial Election Accountability Assembly was a success!
Over 800 enthusiastic delegates from MVA’s 57 member organizations, joined by dozens of invited community leaders, politicians, guests and observers packed the Italian Cultural Centre in Vancouver on April 4, 2017.
They were all there to call on John Horgan, Leader of the New Democratic Party of BC, and Andrew Weaver, Leader of the Green Party of BC, to support MVA’s provincial agenda and work with us to address the affordable housing crisis, access to transit, income inequality and healthcare in British Columbia.
- A timeline of the nights events from storify.
- Lots of photos here at our Facebook page.
- Download the assembly program here.
Earlier that day, we received word that Christy Clark, Leader of the BC Liberal Party, was unavailable.
In the months and days leading up to our assembly, leaders from MVA’s faith, community and aboriginal organizations had contacted Ms. Clark’s office directly to encourage her to participate, making it clear that MVA is a non-partisan organization with a diversity of member organizations and that our model is to treat all political leaders respectfully. Unfortunately, we were told that Ms. Clark could not make the assembly work with her schedule.Read more
Pb wants to volunteer 2016-02-19 11:55:28 -0800
The Social Inclusion Team has 2 sub-committees: Clusters and Permit Reform, who meet regularly.
Vancouver's city government has committed to work with MVA to develop innovative solutions to social isolation and to reform the permit process to facilitate small, local organizations wishing to put on events.
Will you help us ensure city hall lives up to their commitment?Become a volunteer
Pb published MVA brings people together to share experiences and talk about transit in Transit Stories 2015-03-04 09:19:47 -0800
MVA builds strong relationships among different, diverse, groups in our community by bringing people together to connect with their neighbours and fellow citizens – this is one of our core principles.
Over the past few weeks members of the public have been getting together at Transit Forums organized by Metro Vancouver Alliance and talking to us – and to each other – about transit in the Lower Mainland.
We asked people to share their transit stories and experiences – good or bad – and talk about how improvements to our transit and transportation system will affect them.
We found that improved transit is important to people for a wide range of reasons. Here are a few comments and stories from people in the Lower Mainland …Read more
MVA member Dr. Nigel Haggan, of the Eco-Justice Unit of the Anglican Diocese of New Westminster wrote this op-ed for the parish newsletter.
The context is erosion of public transit in the Lower Mainland. The issue is the forthcoming vote on the Mayor’s transit funding plan, and I’ll get to that after a brief reroute through Eco-justice.
Justice is a right to physical, emotional, spiritual and intellectual safety and well-being. Eco-justice recognizes that the well-being of people, plants, animals, lands and waters are deeply connected. The core message of all major religions is love and justice for the sick, poor, hungry, imprisoned and otherwise oppressed. If we follow Sallie McFague and Leonardo Boff in considering nature as the “new poor,” all scripture relating to the poor must now be interpreted to include humans and non-humans together.
This is the heart, soul, mind and strength of the World Council of Churches’ Statement on Ecological Debt, the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
Increasingly, world religious leaders are reaffirming something that Aboriginal people never forgot. That is that covenant or the Golden Rule extends to all creation. Sallie McFague’s “new poor” shocks us out of our “false anthropology” of entitlement to all we can afford. Covenant forbids us to condescend, either to humans as “poor” or to non-humans through the epithet of “conservation.” Biology teaches us that we owe a debt to the most ancient life forms that persist in our DNA. Ecology teaches us that we live in a company of relationships
— of beings, connections, spaces, lifegiving flows of air and water, music, voices and resonances. Eco-justice requires that we cherish and protect our human and nonhuman relatives. BC has a large “ecological debt” in the shape of depleted forests, fish and wildlife. BC has an enormous debt to Aboriginal people, acknowledged, but subverted by a glacially slow treaty process.
Eco-justice would endow Aboriginal people with the resources and responsibility of restoration. Eco-justice would create vibrant and diverse local economies that reflect love as well as need.
Applied to public transit, eco-justice requires a broad and long view of “costs and benefits”:
• Transit — the ability to move — is a human right. No one questions the right of those that can afford cars to travel for work or play.
• Transit is a public service, a convenience to the affluent, but a necessity for the disadvantaged. There is no need for a public service to make a profit, as witnessed by public outrage at attempts to privatize Medicare.
• More private cars accelerate global climate change and reduce air quality. Air pollution kills 21,000 Canadians every year, 9 times the number killed in car accidents — rich and poor get equal treatment.
• Traffic congestion costs work time and contributes to chronic and acute stress
— road rage, inattention and accidents.
• More cars increase wear and tear on roads and bridges and increase enforcement costs.
• Traffic noise and volume reduce use and enjoyment of public spaces.
Short-Term Action: Vote Yes!
Help people register to vote! At home, in your neighbourhood, schools, church, gym, coffee shops, workplace and organizations. Show our provincial government that we care about affordable accessible, safe transit for all, but especially for the most marginalized. That we care about justice for the environment. That we care about justice for those least able to pay to get to work, play and visit with their loved ones. To have a chance to enjoy Super Natural BC.
We want government to live up to the longterm commitment implicit in the carbon tax. We want government to honour their commitment to match the long-awaited Compass system to London’s Oyster card that is free for children, students, seniors and the disabled and subsidized for job seekers and apprentices. With no requirement to “tap out” on buses.
I am confident that a full analysis of social, economic, environmental and spiritual (amenity) benefits would justify substantial increases in service and a substantial fare reduction. Short-term research funds could be sought from Eco-Justice Canada, David Suzuki Foundation and many other conservation organizations. In the long-term, a full social-environmental economic spiritual accounting would be an excellent Masters or PhD project.
No world-class transit.
No world-class city.
No rider left behind!
Pb published Passengers in wheelchairs tell their story in Transit Stories 2015-02-04 09:31:57 -0800
Bet Tuason of Vancouver says overcrowded buses often roar by.
“Us in the disabled community we have very little options. Take the bus? It’s not really an option because they keep passing us! Most buses now are full and every time we miss a bus, our waiting period is now, not just 15 minutes, it goes up to an hour, and then an hour and a half.”
Craig Langstone of Burnaby says the alternative is the HandyDart service. He says he often waits hours to get picked up.
“It’s not good use of my time waiting around for transit to get picked up, especially around the winter months.”
Mark Friesen, one of our members from SFU, shared this video with us.
He'd like to challenge other MVA members to record a video of why you'll be voting YES in the upcoming referendum. After you've done that, challenge three friends or colleagues to do the same! Post a link here or email it us at firstname.lastname@example.org - also be sure to share them on social media using the #CutCongestion hashtag.
Pb published PSAC BC and Metro Vancouver Alliance: Finding common ground and working for the common good. in From our Members 2014-11-14 14:53:41 -0800
PSAC members in BC are actively involved with the work of Metro Vancouver Alliance, a broad based alliance of community groups, labour, faith and educational institutions, all working together for the common good.
MVA was founded in 2009 and is comprised of almost 40 affiliated organizations, representing 200,000 people in the Greater Vancouver area. Members of MVA come from all walks of life: union locals, faith congregations, youth groups, neighborhood houses, co-ops, academic departments and community non-profits.
Jamey Mills, President of the Vancouver Area Council, explains:
“Our Area Council was one of the founding members of MVA almost five years ago. We thought it was important that PSAC, as an organization, be involved with bettering our communities and that we reach out to non-traditional partners. By working together on common issues, we will be more effective at creating positive change.”
There are community alliances like MVA in the US, Canada, Germany, Australia, New Zealand, and notably in England, where Citizens UK – a group based on the MVA community organizing model – persuaded the London Olympic Games Committee to become a living wage employer and is at the forefront of the City of London Living Wage Campaign.
These broad-based community organizations operate on the principle of ‘power before program’. In other words, they build strong relationships amongst diverse groups in the community, come together to listen to their members’ concerns, agree on issues that can be worked on together, and then move forward with a campaign.
Jennifer Horsley, a member of UPCE Local 20095, got involved with MVA after attending a listening workshop.
“I thought it was really amazing that such diverse and sometimes divergent groups could come together and end up talking about the same issues.” she says, “I think the PSAC BC should be involved because this is a movement that has a lot to offer us in terms of learning to listen to our members – not just about workplace issues – but about things that affect all of us.”
On March 19, 2014, dozens of representatives from each member organization, 600 people in total, will gather at Metro Vancouver Alliance’s Founding Assembly, where the results of the listening workshops will be announced, and the first MVA campaign will be launched.
Tracy Shudo, a PSAC member who works at Service Canada, will be there.
“When I became involved with MVA I was really surprised that there are so many other groups out there, working on some of the same issues as the labour movement. Affordable childcare and housing, fair wages, income inequality, retirement security, the environment. These are all issues that we all care about and we can all work together on.”
Tracy sums it up: “Together we’re stronger.”
For more information about MVA, visit www.metvanalliance.org or check out their Facebook page. If you’re a PSAC member in the Lower Mainland who would like to get involved, or attend the founding meeting, March 19, contact Jamey Mills.
Pb wants to volunteer 2014-11-10 16:40:25 -0800
Yes! I want to take an active part in Metro Vancouver Alliance!
MVA is made up of over 50 member institutions - a broad based alliance of community groups, labour, faith and educational organizations whose members all work together on common issues.
If your institution is affiliated to MVA, let us know how you'd like to get involved!
If your institution isn't affiliated yet, let us know and we'll be in touch!Become a volunteer