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Jagmeet Singh promises B.C. families immediate disaster relief, safer communities

During a virtual townhall with hundreds of people in British Columbia’s interior – many of whom have have been impacted by wildfires – NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh announced his plan to provide immediate disaster relief supports for people, protect communities, and invest in more climate resilient infrastructure.

“Families in B.C. are watching their homes burn to the ground and wondering if this is the new normal,” said Jagmeet. “Liberal and Conservative government have not meaningfully addressed this crisis nor have they stepped up with enough supports for families in danger. Displaced Canadians are counting on us for help now and future generations are counting on us to act. It’s time to do it.”

Jagmeet pledged an NDP government would provide an additional $3 billion over four years to help municipalities respond to disasters and support communities in building climate resilience infrastructure. This fund could be used to provide immediate disaster relief funds for families who have had to evacuate, rebuild burned communities and invest in climate resilience infrastructure.

As of Tuesday, more than 220 wildfires were still active in B.C. and more than 3,700 properties that have been evacuated.

As part of this commitment, New Democrats would provide support for wildfire mitigation strategies as well as training and equipment for firefighters, including Indigenous-led crews.

Jagmeet said protecting people from future disasters also means taking important actions to fight the climate crisis. This announcement would build on the NDP’s climate action plan to protect our air, land and water and create good, clean jobs.

“In the last six years Justin Trudeau has promised to reduce emissions. Instead, he has increased subsidies to Big Oil and emissions have gone up,“ said Jagmeet. "The climate crises is making theses disasters more intense and more frequent. We can’t afford Mr. Trudeau's empty words on the environment anymore."

“New Democrats will deliver real support to help families now, build more resilient communities, and the climate action our planet needs.”

Jagmeet was joined for the virtual townhall by NDP candidates including Wayne Stetski (Kootenay-Columbia), Bill Sundhu (Kamloops-Thompson--Cariboo), Joan Philip (Central Okanagan-Similkameen-Nicola), Richard Cannings (South Okanagan-West Kootenay) and Cade Desjarlais (Kelowna-Lake Country).

For more information, please contact:

Mike McKinnon:

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