Child advocacy group to survey leadership candidates

First Call - a coalition of child and youth advocates - will soon be sending out a survey to provincial Liberal and New Democrat leadership candidates. The coalition's members are scheduled to discuss the contents of that survey during their upcoming January 12 meeting, where they'll "hone the key policy questions" they want to raise with those candidates. First Call is best known for producing its annual BC Child Poverty Report Card. The following is a complete of the agenda for the aforementioned meeting.


First Call is a front organization, among its members are the BC Teacher's Federation and Hospital Employees Union and pretty much any left wing special interest group you can name.

I'll save you the bother: they will demand more government spending on schools and health, thus benefiting their membership. Their programs are radical and divisive; misandrist and leukophobic. Child and youth advocates my clavicle, they are pinkos, straight up.

Does that mean the only people with opinions that matter are the right-wing whack jobs? I mean does calling people you disagree with "pinkos" negate all credibility of organizations whose purpose is to be child an youth advocates?

I fail to see a problem with spending more money on schools and health...

"...benefitting their membership."??????

Spending on schools and health kinda benefits entire communities, no?


Does that mean that the fine folks at first call have a problem with white blood cells?



I have recently heard this claim about First Call being a "front for pinkos" several times, including a direct quote by at least one BC Liberal MLA, so there seems to be a concerted smear campaign going on. One can only guess that it's because kids' advocacy voices are effectively communicating the disturbing impacts of cuts and underfunding in critical areas like early intervention and child protection, or the ongoing failure to address child poverty or horrific school drop-out rates among vulnerable sub-groups such as Aboriginal students.

Make no mistake though, First Call is in good company, as the same mesasge is coming from BC's highly-respected Representative for Children & Youth, family networks like ours and bipartisan bodies such as the BCACL, BCSTA and the BC Legislative Committee on Finance and Government Services (the BC Liberal-led committee of MLAs that listens to citizens and produces annual budget recommendations). I see even Mr Falcon (whom I don't believe is a "pinko" in anyone's book) in his campaign ads on this page is trying to convey the image that he cares deeply about kids.

I expect others will join First Call in holding the leadership contenders accountable and highlighting the need to re-think priorities with more emphasis on investing in children, youth and families vs. exorbitantly-costly megaprojects, political patronage deals and back-of-a-napkin-designed tax cuts.

Here's a classic example of the nonsense that our outgoing leader continues to offer as "fiscal responsibility" and sound public policy rationales:

We'd love to hear whether the other leadership contenders could find a better way to spend $20 - $30 million in scarce tax dollars. (Hint: How about restoring and expanding the proven autism early intervention programs that Mary Polak cut last year?)

Let's see.....right wing front organizations. The Fraser Institute, Chambers of Commerce, The Bankers Association, Oil and Gas Association. The list is endless.

Neil, at least I have learnt over the years when too far is too far most of time. You really have thrown propane onto the bonfire... not that I think First Call is really fair to my MCFD Minister who needs to reform her autism reforms. She can stand up to the BCNDP really well, but can she be big enough to see a mistake and correct it? We'll see...

Also, its demeaning to slander people who join together for a cause - whether it's a think tank or a Chamber of Commerce or a business association or a union - as a "front group". People have the right to associate to push their idealism forward. Really un-Christmas like of both you Richard and Neil.

The Fraser Institute isn't using children human shields, Richard, nothing front about it.

Fist Call is, in fact, a collection of unions and left wing groups and they do, in fact, have a self interest in pursuing their leftist agenda, which does, in fact, largely call for more taxpayer cash going to their respective organizations. Calling this idealism is infantile, Josef. Merry Christmas gentlemen.

So right-wing corporate interests are not a self interest groups? Trying to keep their taxes down at the expense of services to children is not self- interest? "Beam me up Scotty. There is no intelligent life down here!"

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