VOTE: General Election Candidate Q&A (Jon Ellacott BC Liberals)

Candidate: Jon Ellacott

Party: BC Liberal Party


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  1. Why should West End residents vote for you?

West End residents should vote for me only if they tire of poor representation and ineffective governance. If the status quo satisfies you, your vote should go to Spencer as he is a good man and a competent representative. Fiscal conservatism and financial responsibility are my credo – I will always work tirelessly to put your hard earned money back into your pocketbook.

2. In a recent survey, Gordon Neighbourhood House members identified housing as their top concern. We applaud the recent acquisition of the Buchan Hotel and other properties in the West End for supportive housing with complimentary supports. Despite these recent openings, we still face a shortage of supportive housing for people experiencing homelessness. Additionally, many millennials and seniors have marginal or fixed incomes that have not kept up with the rising cost of living. How are you committed to housing those in need, and preventing others from becoming homeless?

The crux of this issue is supply. With insufficient affordable housing supply, costs skyrocket due to the demand/supply relationship. As a professional construction manager, I have a very unique perspective when it comes to this issue. I personally believe we should be prioritizing modular, prefabricated construction methods, while eliminating red tape and unnecessary zoning and permitting regulations that stand in the way of developers delivering affordable housing units to market. The BC Liberals have committed to a variety of measures including using crown and public lands to build affordable housing for those in need.

3. The Opioid Crisis has now claimed more than 3,000 lives in BC at a rate of almost 5 people every day. As an organization, we believe that substance use disorder is a public health emergency and not a criminal justice issue. What are you committed to doing to prevent overdose deaths due to illicit drug toxicity, and what will you do to support neighbours struggling with substance use disorder?

We must always treat the causes of these problems, rather than the symptoms. There are underlying conditions with regards to the disease of drug addiction. We must ensure that we are providing support to youth that are exposed to abuse, as well as treating systemic mental health issues with the proper care and attention they deserve. There is no silver bullet to solve this problem; we must trust our social workers and medical experts and along with law enforcement and our first responders, assist them in mitigation and treatment.

4. As an organization we are committed to supporting the leadership of Indigenous people, and implementing the recommendations of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. What is your party doing to support Indigenous peoples, and centre Indigenous knowledge and voices in your provincial public policy?

We must act boldly in working with our First Nations and federal government partners to create new opportunities for Indigenous peoples. The BC Liberals are committed to addressing issues of economic and social inequality faced by Indigenous peoples across the province.

5. What are your specific plans, including actions and timetables, for reducing greenhouse gas emissions by a substantial amount, and how will you fund and implement them?

We all know that the world is moving away from oil within our lifetimes. BC is well placed for this challenge with our strong clean and green hydro resources that provide all of our electricity. Our next challenge is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from transportation and buildings. We Support investments in renewable energy and next-generation clean energy and technology solutions, including working with the federal government and other provinces to leverage innovations and research in carbon capture.

6. Prior to COVID-19, Gordon Neighbourhood House operated the largest Food Hub on the downtown peninsula, which provided hundreds of neighbours with emergency food access. We recognize that food banks are a temporary solution, and that poverty is one of the main causes of food insecurity. What will you do to address poverty and inequality in our community?

We must work diligently to pull all less-fortunate British Columbians out of poverty by providing them with options and assistance to raise themselves up and stand proud in our society. There should be no stigma associated with poverty and inequality, as government at all levels has failed these individuals. I would work closely across all jurisdictions to try and make a meaningful impact with regards to this systemic issue.

7. What is your favorite memory or personal experience in the West End?

I particularly enjoyed the times I was able to work and volunteer with Jim Deva and Little Sister’s. I remember one time specifically, delivering a load of flooring into Jim’s townhouse and meeting his partner and his dog. A mutual friend and I sat in his living room chatting for hours. He is sorely missed as he was an incredible advocate and community leader.