March 6, 2015 | John Crawford | CFTK-TV
There was a testy exchange in the Legislature yesterday, over the lack of licenced funeral services on Haida Gwaii.
Liberal Justice Minister Suzanne Anton drew jeers from the opposition NDP, when she said Consumer Protection BC was simply enforcing the law, when it ordered an unlicenced volunteer to stop helping the families of deceased loved ones.
“Funeral providers are private providers and the person who was purporting to be that private provider on Haida Gwaii was not suitable and their ability to do that has not been permitted by Consumer Protection British Columbia, they make these decision within their administrative requirements, Madame Speaker,” she told the Legislature.
But North Coast MLA Jennifer Rice said sending the bodies of loved ones to the mainland for funerals is extremely expensive, and relies on a ferry service which can be sporadic, especially in winter.
“To the Minister of Justice, will she ask Consumer Protection BC and Northern Health to work with the community and help find some way of providing these basic services to the residents of Haida Gwaii,” said Rice.
And New Democrat Mike Farnworth accused the Liberals of being callous toward the residents of Haida Gwaii and rural areas of BC
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