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COVID-19 Update: The BC CDC says May 28 there were 4 new positive tests in BC bringing the total to 2,562 There are 6 in intensive care. There are 34 hospitalized. On the brighter side 2,153 have recovered. Sadly, two more have succumbed to the disease to total 164. A total of 140,136 tests have been done. Visit the World Health Organization website to learn more about global efforts. The current state of emergency is being extended through the end of the day on June 9, 2020.

 

 

  Thursday, May 28 2020  

Published 2:30 pm

 

Garage fire was small

Mysterious origins

Staff/Voice photos

 

Firefighters attend to a small garage fire Tuesday.

fire is a fire no matter how large or how small. On Tuesday afternoon the CFD was called to the 9400-block of Broadway after reports of the smell of smoke in the area.

Upon arrival firefighters located a small fire in an empty garage next to a home that appeared to be vacant.

No one was injured in the fire. If anyone has information they can call the RCMP at 604 792 4111.

 

 

  Thursday, May 28 2020  

Published 2 pm

 

Down but not out

An open letter to the Governor General regarding Volunteer Service medals

Dave Palmer, Nepean Ont./File photo

 

 

Thousands of Canadians are signatories on the petition

I started this effort in the summer of 2006, almost 14 years ago. Still our nation seems determined not to ever acknowledge an entire generation of Veterans for their service! Why is this?

In any event, the effort continues to bring about "Remembrance" and "Honour" and a "lasting legacy" to acknowledge and recognize the service of Canada's Veterans'. Many efforts and dozens of formally sanctioned petitions have been read in the House of Commons and it begs the question as why...when thousands and thousands of Canadians have as signatories to these petitions are not being heard by those they have elected to serve?!

Why is it that for the Veterans of the Cold War era that whether they served for 3 years or 33 years or 10 years or 22 years or any honourable length of time that they are deemed as unworthy of formal recognition by means of an official Canadian medal to honour them and their contributions to Canada as members of the Canadian Armed Forces?

It definitely is a frustrating issue that many of our Nation's Veterans stand with pride and dignity at many Remembrance and Memorial Services without one medal to show they served and for the most part, most Canadians do not know this. As mentioned so many times, if there was just one medal that could be shown as the medal that only Veterans could wear, then Canadians could see that those wearing it are Veterans.

This would certainly alleviate the issue of many that wear two or three commemorative medal but are not Veterans. Sadly our youth and for a great part, many Canadians do not know this. With one medal for Veterans only, this could be sorted out so that others could and should know who has had the courage and conviction to voluntarily join and dedicated a portion of their lives in service to our nation.

This should be an iron clad legacy of Remembrance for all Veterans! A Canadian tradition and an important aspect of Canadian History where a Veteran, can be recognized by this one proposed medal. As to why for almost 14 years our nation does not want to do it remains a mystery.

 

  Thursday, May 28 2020  

Published 8 am

 

Did extra money from the Fed and Provincial gov'ts fuel overdose deaths?

BC Coroner says numbers spiked in March and April, Liberals blame NDP

BC Coroners Office/BC Gov't photo

 

Coroner Lisa Lapointe speaks at a press conference.

The BC Coroners Service has published updated reports on illicit drug toxicity deaths and fentanyl-detected drug deaths to the end of April 2020. The reports show an average of 3.2 illicit drug toxicity deaths per day in the first four months of this year.

"We remain in a public health emergency, with more than three British Columbians dying each day from illicit drug toxicity deaths," said Lisa Lapointe, chief coroner. IIIicit drug toxicity death rates in B.C. are still the highest for any jurisdiction in Canada. Every region in B.C. has been impacted

"Recent efforts to improve access to safe supply in B.C. are encouraging, and the BC Coroners Service supports continued enhancement of this critical life-saving measure. We continue to recommend a regulated, evidence-based, supportive treatment and recovery system as an important pillar in preventing future deaths."

Read today's the entire release.

 

 

  Wednesday, May 27 2020  

Published 8 am

 

Grat's to the grads

Chilliwack Mayor wishes youths well in their future endeavours

Jamie Leggatt/Website photo

 

Typically, graduation is an exciting time of the year, full of senior class trips, graduation events and other activities that create lifelong memories. I’m sure many of us still look back on that final year of school fondly. I remember how great it was to walk the hallways of school, feeling like I was more than ready to leave high school behind and take on the next phase of my life with confidence.

The class of 2020 is missing out on that experience. They don’t get to enjoy senior class events and activities. There are no senior class pranks. Most importantly, they don’t get to proudly walk across the stage as family and friends cheer on their accomplishment. While I applaud those getting creative with planned virtual activities, we know they can’t replace the real thing and that loss is felt deeply by our grads.

To the graduating class of 2020, I want you to know that your future is bright. Finishing your last year at home was a difficult challenge, but you did it and should be proud of all you have accomplished. You’ve put in the hard work and are ready to take on the next phase of your life.

 

 

  Wednesday, May 27 2020  

Published 8 am

 

Crews make quick work of workshop fire

One person injured in mishap

Chris Wilson, Assistant Chief, Emergency Preparedness, CFD/Voice photo

First responders treat the victim on-scene.

 

On Monday, May 25th, at approximately 5:15 pm, the Chilliwack Fire Department was alerted to a report of a structure fire in the 9200-block of Coote Street.

 

Fire crews from Halls 1,4 and 6 responded to the scene and upon arrival discovered smoke and flames from a small workshop in the backyard.

 

Crews were able to quickly knock down the fire and damage was limited to the workshop and its contents.

 

There were no firefighter injuries at this fire, however one civilian sustained injury and was transported to hospital. The cause of this fire is currently under investigation by Chilliwack Fire Officials.

 

 

  Tuesday May 26 2020  

Published noon

 

Driving out drive-in fans

Twilight Theatre owners reach out to the community to help fight new provincial gov't restrictions

Twilight Drive-in/Handout photo

 

Three Drive-in theatres in BC will be effected; Langley, Nakusp and Prince George.

 

Hi drive-in fans. We need your help.
The Ministry of Health issued a new directive saying that drive-in events are not to have more than 50 vehicles, and the sale of refreshments are restricted.

This new restriction clearly has come up now in response to a number of people trying to capitalize off COVID-19 by proposing temporary pop-up parking lot drive-in and concert events. They would not have the same permanent infrastructure and facilities as us.

The official order uses two different terms, “drive-in theatres” and “drive-in events” (screen shot below). We clearly are a “drive-in theatre”, and whoever wrote the new order obviously gave some consideration to the difference. But for some reason we are being held to these new restrictions for “drive-in events”. We do not agree that we are an “event” and these new restriction should not apply to pre-existing, on-going, permanent, brick and mortar licensed drive-in theatres in BC. We note we have a valid “drive-in theatre” business license from the Township of Langley, and not an “event” license or permit.

Furthermore, we hold a “take out food” license, which was permitted in Phase 1 and still is in Phase 2. But now to single us out saying that our “take out food” license isn’t valid while everyone’s else is, is completely unfair.

We were allowed to operate our drive-in and concession stand during Phase 1, the worse part of the pandemic, with the social distancing measures we put in place. But now, in Phase 2, the restart phase, restrictions are being placed on us that will severely impede the viability of the drive-in. Seems contradictory and backwards to us!

Drive-ins across Canada are being allowed to open under their province’s Phase 1 reopenings, with identical protocols we have in place, and now we are being restricted more than them, in Phase 2.

We are seeking a reconsideration and exemption from the Ministry of Health, and we are asking you to tell them that you do not agree with these new restrictions being placed on permanent drive-in theatres, and that we should be allowed to continue to operate with the social distancing policies we put in place during Phase 1. Please contact:
 

HLTH.Minister@gov.bc.ca, adrian.dix.MLA@leg.bc.ca, hlth.health@gov.bc.ca, Hlth.HSD@gov.bc.ca, Bonnie.Henry@gov.bc.ca
 

 

  Tuesday May 26 2020  

Published noon

 

Can cannabis help?

Chilliwack Prostrate Cancer Support group meets in online conference June 4

Staff/Submitted photos

 

 

Speaking will be Pharmacy Manager from Pharmasave Health Centre, Nader Khattab, B.Sc Pharm, R.Ph

 

The stats are dire; 1 in 9 men in BC will be diagnosed with Prostate Cancer in their lifetime.

Chilliwack Prostrate Cancer Support Group's next is slated for Thursday, June 4th at 7 pm and will be done via a web conference, all past attendees will receive an invitation to join.

 

Our speaker will be Pharmacy Manager from Pharmasave Health Centre, Nader Khattab, B.Sc Pharm, R.Ph speaking about Cannabis for medical purposes. Attendees may ask questions on the chat line. Contact Dale Erikson 604 824 5506 or Marc Gosselin 604 824 5506 for more info on how to log on.


Blue Walkers Walking Club
Please join us for our blue walkers weekly prostate cancer walking clubs, every Wednesday at 9:00 am, Rotary Trail on the Vedder River at the Peach Road Parking Lot.

In extreme weather, we meet at the Cottonwood Mall. We send out an email to the group every Monday or Tuesday to announce any changes or if it is the status quo.

Prostate Cancer Support Group Chilliwack holds their regular monthly meetings on the 1st Thursday of each month at 7 pm at the Mt. Cheam Lion’s Hall at 45580 Spadina Ave, Chilliwack however at this time meetings will be online.

No meetings Jan/Jul/Aug

Each year there's a Father's Day fundraiser. Watch the local Chilliwack website for details.
 

 

  Tuesday May 26 2020  

Published noon

 

A penny for your thoughts

Fraser Valley Treasure Hunters come up with some great finds in April

Staff/Submitted photos

 

 

A vintage commemorative medal from the Royal Canadian Legion won first place.

 

They're metal detecting enthusiasts. They come from all walks with the draw of the thrill of finding something of value, an old coin or sometimes it's expensive jewellry, a piece of history, or just an item interest to talk about. That's what drives members of The Fraser Valley Treasure Hunters (FVTH).

The group's focus is to make the hobby more enjoyable by having organised hunts and sharing experiences with each other and win prizes.

First Place - Linda Sexsmith with a commemorative Medal from the Royal Canadian Legion

Second Place - Bailey Andrichuk  with a ladies necklace

Third Place - Sarah Preston with a beautiful ring

The club goes out on group hunts or solo throughout the month then meet to share their finds over dinners at the Abbotsford Legion.


A diamond ring was located by Sarah Preston.


The are times when FVTH founder Mark Lewis and the group are called upon to do a special search for lost necklaces or other keepsakes. So if you lose something you can always check with Lewis to see if there's a chance it can be found.

New members are always welcome. See more on their website here. Connnect on Facebook here. E-mail Mark here.

 

Watch an interesting 3 minute YouTube clip here.

 

 

  Sunday May 24 2020  

Published 2 pm

 

Man dead after armed confrontation with police

RCMP and Independent Investigations Office of BC give few details of Christina Drive incident

Cpl. Jesse O'Donaghey, RCMP/Voice photos

 

An RCMP drone and yellow markers indicating spent bullet casings dot the road on Sunday.

 

On May 23, 2020 shortly before 5:30 p.m., Chilliwack RCMP were called to check the well-being of an emotionally distraught man in possession of firearms at a residence in the 46000-block of Christina Drive in Chilliwack.

 

Upon arrival by frontline officers, the man allegedly fired shots at the attending police officers, who retreated and took steps to contain the residence. No one was injured. Officers evacuated homes in the immediate area and called the Lower Mainland Emergency Response Team, and a RCMP crisis negotiator to the scene to assist.

 

An officer with shoe covers investigates the scene.

 

An interaction between the man and police resulted in shots being fired by police. The man exited the home during the interaction and then returned inside. A robot was deployed by police to safely conduct a search the home. The man was found unresponsive inside. Despite life saving measures performed by emergency medical crews at the scene he died.

 

The IIO BC and the BC Coroners Service is now investigating to determine whether police actions or inactions are linked to the man’s death.

 

 

  Saturday May 23, 2020  

Published 8 am

 

No parking

No injuries in First Ave mishap

Staff/Voice photo

 

Police sort out what happened.

 

It was around 8 am Saturday on First Ave when two vehicles collided on the south side of the Save-On-Foods grocery store at Salish Plaza. Thankfully no one was hurt despite heavy damage to both the van and the car.

 

 

  Saturday May 23, 2020  

Published 8 am

 

From humble beginnings to cultural hub

Watch from home this year as the Punjabi Market goes online May 31

Aneesha Grewel, PMRC/Website image

 

The Punjabi Market goes online May 31 with shows and entertainment.

 

To celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Punjabi Market, The Punjabi Market Regeneration Collective presents “PM50”, taking place virtually on Facebook, Instagram, and Youtube on Sunday, May 31st, 2020. Hosted by Hockey Night in Punjabi’s Amrit Gill, the livestream will feature an interview with the Market’s first shop owner, Mr. Sucha Singh Claire, and performances by Shaan-e-Punjab, Nachiye, and Amarjeet and Baljit Singh.

Website: www.punjabimarket.ca

Instagram: @punjabimarketyvr

Twitter: @punjabimarket  www.facebook.com/PunjabiMarket

The Punjabi Market runs along Main Street, from 49th to 51st, and is the oldest “Little India” in North America. In 1983, the Punjabi Market became home to the world’s first set of street signs written in Punjabi script outside of India. Michael Lee, MLA for Vancouver-Langara opined that “the Punjabi Market is an important part of the historical and cultural history of both the city of Vancouver and of my riding, Vancouver-Langara. Since the first store opened in 1971, the Punjabi Market has been considered a place to support cultural identity as is demonstrated every year by the sheer number of upwards of 100,000 attendees at the annual Vaisakhi Parade through the Punjabi Market.”

 

The 50th Anniversary celebration will include an online shopping portal that aims to support business owners with recovery following the economic impact of the pandemic. In addition, the celebration includes a piece of public art by PMRC Creative Director, Jag Nagra, that will be unveiled closer to the date of the celebration. The event is a collaboration between the Punjabi Market Regeneration Collective, South Asian Arts Society, Indian Summer Arts Society, 5X Festival, Westcoast Foundation, and the City of Vancouver.

 

 

  Saturday May 23, 2020  

Published 8 am

 

Cool or tool?

Free training for employers with app to help reduce workplace bullying and increase productivity

Greg Descantes, Pace Group/Handout images website photo

 

Don't be a tool app will be a help after the during and after the pandemic.

 

With COVID-19 physical distancing orders in effect across British Columbia, the BC Construction Association (BCCA) is making its anti-harassment, hazing and bullying training available online to help fight transmission of the virus while supporting worksite safety and productivity.

The COVID-19 pandemic can lead to increased stress and anxiety at work. Since its launch in 2019, the Builders Code has recognized that safety in the construction industry isn’t just about physical hazards and personal protective equipment, it’s also about psychological hazards. The impact of hazing, bullying, and harassment on productivity and safety cannot be underestimated.

For construction crews, the Builders Code “Cool or Tool?”  app (available at the Apple Store or Google Play) is an engaging and effective reminder of acceptable behaviour. Its 20 real-life workplace scenarios depict model behavior or actions that compromise safety and productivity, workers simply identify if the behavior is “Cool” or “Tool” and get a message that reinforces the appropriate action and its benefits. The app includes a scenario about coming to work sick, which is particularly relevant as industry continues to face challenges related to COVID-19 and fights transmission of the virus. Learn more about the app on the Builder's Code website.

 

 

  Saturday May 23, 2020  

Published 8 am

 

Longtime  friends split winning ticket

The best part of losing is reading about the winners

Lotto BC/Handout photo

Longtime friends Alan Barker and Kathleen Cook spit $2 million prize.

 

Courtenay’s Alan Barker and Langley’s Kathleen Cook are best friends who haven’t seen each other for months, but are hoping for a dream reunion soon to celebrate their $2 million win from the BC/49 draw on March 4, 2020.

 

The friends met in England in the 1950s and later moved to Canada with their spouses, having been friends ever since. More recently, they have been buying lottery tickets together.

 

“I was looking at the screen and was dumbstruck,” says Barker of the moment when he discovered the pair had won. “Even while I was walking out someone asked if it was the big winner. I still can’t believe it.” Naturally, the first person Barker told was Cook.

 

“I was surprised when Alan told me the winning ticket was in his hands, full of wonder and disbelief,” says Cook. “It took a long time to register.” Barker and Cook – with the help of Barker’s grandson – claimed their $2-million prize through BCLC’s alternate prize claim process, which Barker described as “marvelous.”

 

On what the future will bring thanks to the life-changing prize, Barker plans to donate some winnings to the local hospital for new equipment, and may move into “posher” assisted living. Cook says she will help her family members to make their lives easier and more convenient.

 

 

  Friday May 22, 2020  

Published 8 am

 

Think global, act local

Macdonald speaks volumes to Greenpeace about food production

Myrtle Macdonald, B.Sc. N (U of Alberta); M.Sc. Applied in Nursing, Research, Education and Social Sciences (McGill U)/Voice file photos

 

Local Chilliwack produce puts cash into farmer's hands which makes it sustainable.

 

Tell supermarkets to focus on selling only Canadian grown and Canadian processed foods.  Even Canadian owned supermarkets import most of the food they sell. Tell them to sell only breakfast cereals processed in Canada, with natural nutrients and fibre, instead of synthetic minerals and vitamins. Tell them to stop allowing the adding of sugar and glucose-fructose to bread, buns, tinned vegetables, juices and salsa.

 

Tell Tomato farmers to stop allowing their tomatoes to be made into Ketchup (because it contains a cup of sugar), and tell them that Salsa is nutritious only if no sugar or glucose-fructose are added. The high prevalence of obesity, diabetes, heart disease and arthritis is due to all of the above.

The Real Issues About Food Production and Marketing are as Follows:

1.  Canadian small family farms are dying because imported produce, fruit and vegetables cost much less in supermarkets, than they can be produced in Canada. 

2.  Marketing of Canadian grown and processed food between provinces needs to be legislated, as top priority.  Much is left to rot in the fields.

3.  Young people brought up on farms like farm life, but to get an education need to have a car, which they cannot afford at current high prices. 

4.  Their parents also buy cars for a second career, because they cannot make a living on the farm. Many grow hedging and nursery plants instead of food.

5.  A network of railways was popular all over Canada in 1905 to 1955.  Then every family bought a car because gasoline and cars were cheap.  Therefore most rail lines were closed. 

6.  However the public still own most of the right of way of closed railway routes.  Building of railways is very inexpensive compared to widening and maintaining of highways. See www.railforthevalley.com and here.

7.  At present taxes on gasoline are very high. This money  is unjustly used up in cities on extremely expensive sky trains and subways, while rural areas are neglected.

8.  There are Farmers’ Markets in cities, but in rural areas, only for two months in the summer, or not at all.  There could be a refrigerated rail car serving at 6 or 7 different rural locations on a weekly schedule. Fruit, vegetables and perhaps poultry, would be bought and sold in these locations the same week.  Excess would be refrigerated or frozen for sale all year round.  Small vans could carry orders to grocery stores and restaurants, etc.

9.  Hire district Agronomists and Home Economists, to enable small families to diversify mixed farming, so that they will have an income all year round. 

10.  Adding of green houses and cold frames, could help with year round produce. 

11.  Revive and promote 4 H clubs for livestock and gardens.  Create sports clubs so that rural youth will be better educated, encouraged and take pride in their skills and local friendships.

12.  Split Agribusiness and Agriculture government Ministries, both Provincial and Federal.  For some years Agribusiness has been dominant, and has had no understanding of small family farms.

 

 

  Friday May 22, 2020  

Published 8 am

 

'If the wind blows wrong'

Would a continuous shutdown of the Can/US border lead to a similar situation when in 1858 22 Sappers were sent to Yale to quash riots before US troops did and claim it?

Betty Krawczyk, author/Handout photo

 

Krawczyk talks Canada-USA relations with a prolonged border closure.

 

While most of the rest of the world is struggling with making life or death decisions around how to deal with Covid-19, from the treatment of elders to how to safely try to reopen the economy, Trump can't truly concentrate on this because he is so distracted with trying to pin the entire world health and economic disaster on China. He must somehow detract from his own magnificent failures as a leader in a time of such crisis so he is deliberately creating a scenario he hopes might work.

This is to accuse China of some how deliberately creating a bio-weapon and letting it loose into the world at large in order to gain world power. Trump somehow seems to think that if he just thinks something, he doesn't even have to believe it, but just thinks it, tweets it, and says so to the media then it will be true, or come true. And if it didn't come true when he said the Covid-19 was a mild flu, maybe people will forget that, and believe that the world health and economic disasters are all China's fault if he and the other
magical thinkers he surrounds himself with will just keep saying so.

Many Canadians are doing some straight thinking and decision making ourselves and encouraging our Prime Minister Trudeau to do the right thing and keep our borders with the US closed indefinitely except for essential goods. Many Americans are too angry and have too many guns, never mind trying to keep them in isolation for two weeks. And in my opinion, the Trump government along with the body of US intelligence, would not be sorry to see the wind blowing the wrong way with some serious disturbances happening along our borders.

This would provide an opportunity for the US military to cross the border to quell the disturbances and once in, take an inventory of all our water, woods, oil, and perhaps dispute our claims to the North West Passage. Am I being ridiculous? Next time. For her latest video go here.

 

 

  Thursday May 21, 2020  

Published 11 pm

 

City opens park and rec facilities

Chilliwack's mayor talks about reopening

City of Chilliwack/Voice file photo

 

Salish Park, downtown Chilliwack.

 

I’m excited to announce that effective Friday, May 22, all skate parks and outdoor sports courts, including tennis and pickleball courts, hockey, soccer and basketball courts will be open to the public. Signage reminding users of physical distancing guidelines will be installed in strategic locations. Where applicable, rules for safe play incorporating recommendations from sports associations, such as Tennis BC and Pickleball BC, will also be posted.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, Dr. Bonnie Henry, Provincial Health Officer, has encouraged people to safely enjoy the outdoors in the company of immediate family members, while maintaining appropriate physical distancing from others. More recently, she said that the chance of catching COVID-19 from someone as they walk past you in a park is “infinitesimally small”.

For more information, visit the City website.

 

 

  Thursday May 21, 2020  

Published 8 am

 

School restart details

SD33 outlines school start-up plan

Rohan Arul-pragasa, SD33/Voice file photo

 

SD33 schools open part-time June 1.

 

As British Columbia begins to ease restrictions related to the COVID-19pandemic, public schools will play an important part in the provincial government’s Restart Plan announced on May 6.On Friday, May 15, Premier Horgan and Minister of Education Fleming announced that all schools in the province will move to “Stage 3” of the Education Restart Plan effective June 1, 2020. They indicated that they are giving parents the choice to send their children back to school, on a part-time basis, beginning on June 1. This prepares students and teachers for a return to full-time face-to-face classes in September, provided it is safe to return.

Stage 3 Restart Plan:

Children in Kindergarten to Grade 5: in-class learning 2 days per week, supplemented with remote instructionon Fridays.

Children in Grades 6 to 12: remote learning supplemented with up to 20% in-class instruction (ie. tutorials, seminars, small group instruction).

Children of essential workers (aged 5-12)will have the option to attend school 5 days per week.

students with disabilities/diverse abilities and students needing additional supports may be provided with extra opportunities.

• Families who decide not to send their children to class: continued remote instruction until the end of the 2019/20 school year are encouraged to visit the new ministry Keep Learning website that provides learning resources and supports for K-12 students.

This site is being updated as new resources are available. District Preparation and Path Forward: As we move from Stage 3 to Stage 4 of the Education Restart Plan, the district plans to transition students of essential workers from G.W. Graham Secondary to their respective schools the week of June 1. Information regarding the transition plans will be provided to parents the week of May 25. For more information, visit sd33.bc.ca

 

 

  Wednesday May 20, 2020  

Published 5 pm

 

Captain Jennifer Casey...we salute you

Statement from the Casey family

CAF/Handout photo

 

Jennifer Casey's jet crashed on Sunday.

 

Captain Jennifer Casey, our beloved daughter lost her life on Sunday, May 17 in Kamloops, British Columbia while supporting an important mission that seemed to be designed for her. Operation INSPIRATION is a mission with one focus, making Canadians happy in a time of uncertainty and there was no better person in this world to carry out that mission than Jenn. Her beautiful smile and positively infectious personality could brighten anyone’s day and she proudly served the mission as she flew across our great nation with a team that she adored, the Snowbirds.

Jennifer was more than a granddaughter, daughter, sister, and friend to many, she was a story teller, a role that she embraced with passion and skill. She was also a proud Nova Scotian that served as an advocate and ambassador for her province wherever she went. Her journey took her many places but her heart was always at home in Halifax.

It was in Halifax where Jenn studied Journalism at the University of Kings College and started her career in journalism with the Roger’s network at News 95.7 where she developed her story telling skills, giving a voice to local causes and community groups that often didn’t have one. Working with News 95.7 is where she built her enormous network of friends that have spent the last several days sharing kind words about her professionalism and beautiful character. Now they are telling her story.

Always one for an adventure, Jenn joined the Canadian Armed Forces in 2014 as a Public Affairs Officer where she thrived personally and professionally. While serving her country, Jenn traveled around the world meeting new friends at every stop along the way. Using her experience and media connections, Jenn was great at telling the stories of the brave men and women that serve Canada at home and abroad. She was committed always to honing her skills and advancing her education in the field by completing a Master of Interdisciplinary Studies from Royal Roads University in B.C.

Many say that the military is much like a second family and Jenn welcomed these brothers and sisters with open arms and all her heart. There are many groups in her military family that are sharing in her loss. First and foremost, we are sharing this loss with the Public Affairs Branch, a group of communications professionals that introduced Jenn to her military family. We also share this loss with everyone in the Royal Canadian Air Force, a group of loving individuals that will always remember Jenn for the contributions that she made to the team.

And finally, we share her loss with the Canadian Forces Snowbirds, 431 Air Demonstration Squadron, a team that she proudly served in a job she truly loved. Our hearts are with all of you at this time as we mourn the loss of Jenn and remember all of the memories we shared with her.

As she makes her way back to Nova Scotia to her final resting place, we ask those that knew and loved Jenn to cherish the memories that you have of her and continue to bask in the light that she shone on everyone’s life. She is gone but will never be forgotten.

Captain Jennifer Casey………we salute you.

 

 

  Wednesday May 20, 2020  

Published 4 pm

 

Pandemic pay

Health care workers get extra support, minimum wage goes up June 1

BC gov't caucus/CUPE website photo

 

Health care workers celebrate income raises.

 

Health and social service workers delivering in-person, front-line care to some of B.C.’s most vulnerable people will receive a financial boost through temporary COVID-19 pandemic pay.

 

As part of a cost-shared program with the federal government, temporary pandemic pay will support people working on the front lines in B.C.’s health-care system, social services and corrections. This includes workers delivering a range of health and social services to people most vulnerable to COVID-19.

 

“This cost-shared program with the federal government will benefit thousands of British Columbia’s front-line health and social service workers, said Carol James, Finance Minister.

 

More than 250,000 eligible front-line workers will receive temporary pandemic pay, a lump-sum payment of about $4 per hour for a 16-week period, starting on March 15, 2020. Eligible workers will receive the payment directly through their employer and do not need to apply.

 

It builds off the planned minimum wage increase set for June 1, 2020, and existing supports for people during the COVID-19 pandemic, including the BC Emergency Benefit for Workers and the enhanced BC Climate Action Tax Credit boost in July 2020, which doubles the annual benefit for low and middle-income people.

 

 

  Tuesday May 19, 2020  

Published 3 pm

 

Huge heart in a huge man

Gold medal Powerlifter delivers donated food items to ICU healthcare staff at Abbotsford Hospital

Staff/Submitted photos

 

ICU healthcare workers at Abbotsford General Hospital are happy to have been receiving regular hot coffee and food donations. Below, Sumeet Sharma makes a delivery.

 

Sumeet Sharma is a mountain of man and a Canadian legend in the sport of Powerlifting. He's also blessed with a huge heart.

On Sunday, he did a different kind of powerlifting for ICU healthcare workers at Abbotsford General Hospital by bringing an assortment of food items including coffee, Indian food, snack bars and bottle water donated by sport sponsors; the Sharma & Chawla families, Raga Restaurant and Supplement King in Surrey.

In 2019, the lean machine muscled his way to a gold medal with Team Canada in the North American Powerlifting Championships in Panama City in October 2019 as well as Canadian contests.

"I competed in Winnipeg at Nationals, which is the biggest powerlifting event in Canada and took home gold in bench press in the 93 kg weight class," said Sharma in an e-mail to The Voice. "Since I won gold at Nationals, I have been selected to be part of Team Canada to compete at the World Powerlifting Championship in Russia in October."


It's not the only time Sharma has helped.

"My team of sponsors help to donate food supplies to a local hospital each week," Sharma said.

He'd love to see others in the community start a new trend to help the overworked healthcare frontline staff.

"I'm hoping other people would also donate more food supplies to Abby hospital once readers see this story," he said.

 

To learn more about Canadian Powerlifting, visit powerlifting.ca/cpu

 

 

  Tuesday May 19, 2020  

Published 2 pm

 

COVID-19 outbreak at Abbotsford Hospital

Six staff and two people became infected in one unit

Dixon Tam, FHA/Handout photo

 

 

There is a COVID-19 outbreak at Abbotsford Regional Hospital that involves both staff and patients. Enhanced precautions and infection prevention and control measures were implemented immediately and prior to the outbreak being declared.

We would like correct misinformation that has been shared. This outbreak is confined to one unit and, to date, six staff and two patients are part of the outbreak.

There is no evidence of any PPE breach during patient care that has led to this outbreak. All staff were wearing appropriate PPE and taking all appropriate precautions while in care areas. We can also confirm that we are not experiencing a shortage of PPE at Abbotsford Regional Hospital.

Preliminary results of our investigation show that vigilance is required in non-patient care areas. Enhanced strategies have been implemented to reduce risks in these areas.

 

While this is a challenging time for all of us, we would like to remind everyone to respect patient and staff privacy and confidentiality as identifying professions in specific units can easily identify those affected.

We would like to acknowledge our staff and medical staff who are supporting our response to COVID-19 and caring for our patients at this time.

 

 

  Tuesday May 19, 2020  

Published 8 am

 

Miles of music

Chilliwack Symphony Orchestra Belle Voici singers collaborate for world class video

Paul DeWit/Handout photo

 

Forty-eight A Capella singers frm around the world have collaborated on a video available now on Youtube.

 

Fraser Valley’s ‘A Capella’ singing group Belle Voci  has created a  worldwide collaboration project that is going viral.
 

Video clips were recorded within the singer’s  own homes on smart phone with over 50 submissions sent in from around the world and  ‘assembled’ in B.C. Canada by Paula DeWit Music Group  to form a virtual world choir.
 

The project is all about sending a message of love and tranquility to the world, from the world.
 

The video is released on YouTube and Facebook and is for all to enjoy.

 

The meaning behind the music is to love each other with a sincere heart, it's about unity and human kindness. The feel of the piece is about tranquility, peace and hope to be found by joining together.

 

Belle Voci, offers exciting selections of diverse Sacred Music, including renaissance polyphony, Greek Orthodox chant, traditional and jazzy interpretations of favourite pieces, and modern versions of melodies that have lasted throughout the ages.

 

For more information about the Chilliwack Symphony Orchestra and upcoming concerts, visit chilliwacksymphony.com

 

 

  Sunday May 17, 2020  

Published 7 pm

 

Snowbird crash shocks country

Pilot Jennifer Casey was killed near Kamloops in a fatal mishap

Dept. of Nat. Defence/Submitted image J. Casey

 

One member of the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) was killed on Sunday May 17, 2020 and one other member injured in an accident involving a Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) CT-114 Tutor aircraft in the vicinity of Kamloops, British Columbia.

Killed was Captain Jennifer Casey, the team’s Public Affairs Officer, originally from Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Captain Richard MacDougall, one of the team’s coordinators and pilot of the aircraft, was injured and is being treated for his injuries.

“Another tragedy has hit our Canadian Armed Forces. The Snowbirds’ Op INSPIRATION brought joy to Canadians across our country.  Today, we come together in their time of need.  To the family of Captain Jenn Casey we send our condolences, know that she was an inspiration to many and she will be missed.  To Captain Richard MacDougall, we wish you a speedy recovery," said General Jonathan Vance, Chief of the Defence Staff.

The Canadian Forces Snowbirds were deployed on Operation INSPIRATION, a cross-Canada tour to lift the spirits of Canadians and salute frontline workers during the COVID-19 pandemic. At the time of the accident, the CF Snowbirds were taking off from the airport in Kamloops, British Columbia.

“Today, the RCAF has suffered another tragic loss of a dedicated member of the RCAF team. We grieve alongside Jenn’s family, friends and colleagues and are deeply saddened. Our thoughts also go out to the loved ones of Captain Richard MacDougall. We hope for a swift recovery from his injuries," said Lieutenant General Al Meinzinger, Commander Royal Canadian Air Force

The CAF are providing our members and their families with as much support as possible to help them through this difficult time.

A RCAF Flight Safety team will depart from Ottawa shortly to investigate the circumstances of the accident and will begin their work immediately upon arrival.

 

 

  Sunday May 17, 2020  

Published 9 pm

 

TELUS reaches out to Indigenous communities

Field techs haul over 2,900 pounds of food and household items to Soowhalie, Musqueum and Yale First Nations

Lindsay Chan, VP Telus/Submitted photos

 

TELUS Field techs Eric Nordgen (L) and Tresson Marsh delivering food and supplies to Yale First Nation.

To help those in their community, Anne Zhong, a member of TELUS’ Indigenous Connectivity team has spearheaded a huge collective effort that has seen much needed food and supplies delivered straight to the homes of the Soowahlie First Nation in rural Chilliwack and Yale First Nations in Hope, BC.  

TELUS Field tech Ron Pong makes a delivery to Musqueam First Nation.

Indigenous governments to not only enable connectivity, but to support improved access to healthcare, positive social outcomes and community support in the way they want and need it. In this time of COVID-19, that has led to the collection and delivery of essential goods such as phones, handsets, food, household supplies and PPE. Specifically:

On April 14th, TELUS’ field technicians delivered over 2,900 lbs. of food to Soowahlie First Nation in rural Chilliwack to support all 90 households. The food packages allowed vulnerable community members to shelter in place, quarantining from the pandemic. The delivery included:

•   1,725 lbs. of fresh produce

•   375 lbs. of ground beef

•   800 lbs. of dry goods

•   56 lbs. (90 rolls) of paper towel

On April 20th, the team made a delivery of much-needed household supplies, from hand sanitizer to organic flour, to Yale First Nation in Hope to support 20 households.

 

TELUS Field techs Alexander Nazar and Phillip Yeh deliver fresh fruit and vegetables to Musqueam First Nation.

 

“Rural and remote communities have historically been underserved and I am passionate about the ways that we can help to bridge the divide. The opportunity to work with Indigenous governments to support their communities during this unprecedented time has been very personally rewarding,” says Zhong.

 

Aligning with TELUS’ promise to Give Where We Live, its TELUS Days of Giving initiative enables its employees, coast-to-cast, to engage in charitable efforts that align with their personal passions. The giving efforts of TELUS and its employees in support of Canadian communities has been incredibly effective, especially during COVID-19 when the need is stronger than ever.

 

But the giving efforts of employees go much beyond COVID-19. Since 2000 and through the support and encouragement of TELUS, employees - just like Anne - have donated 1.4 million days of service and $1.3 billion in support of Canadian charities and grassroots organizations.

 

Learn more about how TELUS supports Canadians volunteering virtually with the #StayGiving Challenge.

 

 

  Friday May 15, 2020  

Published 3 pm

 

Chilliwack can celly now

City gets Jets PJHL hockey club

Justin Sulpico, PJHL/Submitted image

 

The new flashy logo is a standout.

The Pacific Junior Hockey League (PJHL) has announced that its Board of Governors has awarded an expansion franchise to the city of Chilliwack. The Chilliwack Jets will become the league’s 13th team and will play out of the Sardis Sports Complex beginning in the 2020-21 season.

The Jets will be led by majority owner Clayton Robinson, who will also serve as the club’s first head coach and general manager. “We are pleased to welcome Chilliwack as the 13th member club of the Pacific Junior Hockey League,” says PJHL Commissioner Trevor Alto. “In the midst of some very difficult times right now, it is really great to be able to deliver some good hockey news. Our league is in a position to grow, and the Jets are backed by a great ownership group led by Clayton Robinson which has had great support from the community. We are very excited to see how the franchise will develop and flourish in Chilliwack.”

Robinson was previously the general manager and head coach of the Nanaimo Buccaneers of the Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League. In the past, Robinson was involved with the Chilliwack Minor Hockey Association as a coach. “My partners and I are really excited about bringing Junior B hockey back to Chilliwack,” said Robinson. “Chilliwack is a strong hockey community with a lot of talented, local players developed through minor hockey. The new facility at the Sardis Sports Complex was a crucial part in being able to bring a team back to Chilliwack. This also would not have been possible without support of the PJHL, its board of Governors, and the City of Chilliwack.”

The Jets take their name from a previous Junior B franchise of the same name based in Chilliwack from 1965-1971. The Jets were one of the original teams in the West Coast Junior Hockey League, the precursor to the PJHL, and were crowned league champions in 1970.

The Pacific Junior Hockey League (PJHL) is the longest running Junior “B” hockey league in the province of British Columbia. The PJHL offers young hockey players a premier development opportunity at home and, starting in late 2020, will provide exciting and affordable entertainment across 13 communities in the Lower Mainland. NHLers such as Milan Lucic, Andrew Ladd, Brent Seabrook and many more began their hockey journey in the PJHL. For more information visit www.pjhl.net. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the PJHL is in full cooperation and support of the decision making processes and plans that BC Hockey, Hockey Canada and provincial authorities will have in place for the return of hockey

 

  Friday May 15, 2020  

Published 8 am

 

Phase 2 school openings

Optional K-12 return to school part-time starting June 1

BC Gov't Caucus/Screengrab image

 

Students can return to school on a part-time basis June 1.

Parents will have the choice of bringing their children back to class on a part-time basis this school year as part of BC’s Restart Plan, with the goal of returning to full-time classes in September 2020, provided it is safe to do so.

“British Columbians have worked hard to flatten our curve. As we move into the next phase of our pandemic plan after the May long weekend, the science shows us that we’re ready to bring students back to school safely on a gradual and part-time basis,” said Premier John Horgan. “This will be welcome news for many families who have struggled to adjust to remote and online learning, and for parents who are going back to work. At every step, we will move slowly and make health and safety our top priority. B.C. has done well under the guidance of our provincial health officials, and now is the time to take this next step together.”

To make sure schools are safe for students and staff, the number of students in school each day will be reduced, with most receiving in-class instruction part time. School districts will determine scheduling for classes and transportation arrangements. For kindergarten to Grade 5, this means most students will go to school half time (such as alternating days), while grades 6 to 12 will go to school about one day a week. Children of essential service workers and students needing additional supports will have the option to attend school full time. Families that decide not to send their children to class may continue learning from home.

All boards of education and independent school authorities will be required to implement strict provincial health officer and WorkSafeBC health and safety measures to reduce the risk COVID-19 transmission, including:

• desks spaced apart and avoiding groups or gatherings of students in hallways or other common areas;

• regular cleaning of high-contact surfaces like door knobs, toilet seats, keyboards and desks at least twice a day, and cleaning the school building at least once a day;

• students, educators and staff will be required to clean their hands before entering school property, and there will be more hand-sanitizing and cleaning stations available, with well-stocked supplies;

• staggered drop-offs, lunch and recess breaks, with increased outside time;

• staff and students (or their parents/guardians) must assess themselves daily for symptoms of COVID-19. If any student or staff member has even mild symptoms, arrangements will be made for that person to be returned home;

• one student per seat on school buses, unless children are from the same house, with plexiglass separating the bus driver from students; and

• students or employees should not share food or personal items like phones, pens or pencils. Clear protocols also need to be in place for the safe and healthy handling of all food items. 

Since returning to class is voluntary and most students will be attending part time, school leaders will contact families to make arrangements for children to return to in-class instruction. If parents have not heard from their schools by May 22, 2020, they are asked to contact their principal. Parents and caregivers are advised to follow the schedule provided for their child to ensure a safe and orderly restart. For more information, visit the government website here.

 

 

  Friday May 15, 2020  

Published 8 am

 

It's a gas

The best part of losing it reading about the winners

BCLC/Handout photo

 

Chilliwack's Mary Hnatiw gets to collect big bucks after winning Lotto Max Extra earlier this month.

 

Chilliwack’s Mary Hnatiw, who has been keeping busy these days by cooking and sewing at home, says that winning $500,000 from the May 1, 2020 Lotto Max draw feels ‘Extra’ special Hnatiw said she was “in shock” after scanning her ticket after filling up at the gas station, and realizing she’d won. The first person she told that she’d matched all four numbers to win the top Lotto Max Extra prize was her daughter.
 

“[My daughter] was so surprised, she said ‘I can’t believe it!’” Hnatiw recalled. Hnatiw, who has been playing the lottery for 25 years and likes to play Lotto Max and Lotto 6/49, purchased her ticket at the Lickman Chevron in Chilliwack and says she always says ‘Yes’ to the Extra.
 

Hnatiw received her winnings through BCLC’s temporary alternate prize-claim process. On what it was like to claim a large lottery prize during a worldwide pandemic, Hnatiw noted, “It has been great — I am glad I can safely claim while staying safe at home.”


As far as her plans for enjoying her win, Hnatiw added, “I would like to go back to Europe…but right now that is not an option. I will celebrate at home and share the rest with my kids and grandkids.”

 

 

  Friday May 15, 2020  

Published 8 am

 

Making the best choices

Odd Squad provides unequaled mentoring

Toby Hinton, John Daly, Odd Squad/Handout photo

 

Staff works closely with youths.

Gang and drug education for our younger generation is more important than it ever was, especially during these times of a societal slowdown, higher levels of anxiety and increased social pressures. And we are stepping up to address this. In January 2020, Odd Squad partnered up with Safer Schools Together to produce a 4-part gang education chronology: Gangs and Guns 2020. This innovative documentary series (password oddsquad) is designed for students, educators, and law enforcement in British Columbia, and although the distribution has been impacted by COVID-19 we want our supporters to see this valuable work.

Odd Squad has used this downtime to completely revamp our web site (thanks Brendon!) and we have dropped all the pricing on our videos for download. We are moving to provide a streaming service to our library of educational films for free to Odd Squad members (and a membership is a simple $10 donation!). We have dropped our download film prices to $4.99 for those who want to add these films to their libraries.

Our underlying community service goal is to educate everyone on issues affecting the community (particularly youth) and we want our top-quality films to be shared, distributed, and used. The topics are too important not to discuss with our kids – these films get us to a place of discussion, and from here, life-saving learning can happen.

Register to become and Odd Squad Member today!

 

  Friday May 15, 2020  

Published 8 am

 

Hearing is Believing

BC Gov't threatens to cancel support for preschools for deaf and hard of hearing kids

 

Christian von Donat/Website photo

 

Speech and Hearing British Columbia (SHBC) is urging the Provincial Government to step in and address the potential closure of Metro Vancouver preschools for deaf and hard of hearing children. Offering adequate services for early childhood intervention is critical when it comes to managing communication health and the lack of these services influences the developmental trajectory of a child for a lifetime.

“It is extremely concerning to see that deaf and hard of hearing children in our province are being asked to make do with insufficient educational supports, and that worse still some preschools specializing in this care are facing imminent closure,” said Staci Cooper, President of SHBC. “We know from firsthand experience that children in our province are being left behind when it comes to timely, critical early childhood intervention, and these new developments underscore how dire the issue is becoming.”

May is Speech and Hearing Month, an important opportunity to remind BC of the importance of their communication health, and how the lack of adequate support services can lead to lifelong repercussions in the development and societal participation of an individual. From early childhood development, to seniors, to those suffering from trauma and medical ailments, there are many periods in a person’s life where their communication health may be temporarily or permanently impacted.

“This news speaks to the larger issue on supporting our children in BC. For example, we know that some toddlers/preschoolers often wait months or even years to see a publicly funded speech-language pathologist (SLP)”, added Cooper. “Sadly, some children never do end up seeing an SLP before beginning kindergarten. Further, despite a nationally accepted recommended caseload for a full-time equivalent SLP of 25-40 children, almost 50% of SLPs in BC have caseloads above 80 children.”

BC currently has the second lowest number of speech-language pathologists in Canada, a sad distinction.  Through specific investments in educational facilities and in increasing the number of SLPs practicing in the province, the Government of BC can ensure that children growing up in our province have the communication tools they need to thrive.

 

  Thursday May 14, 2020  

Published 8 pm

 

Queer Arts Festival  'Wicked' Shows

Digital venues explore dance, art media July 16-20

Barb Snelgrove, Megamouth Media/Handout photos

 

"This Crazy Show" during the Queer Arts Festival July 16-20 in Vancouver.
 

The 12th annual Queer Arts Festival (QAF), Vancouver’s artist-run, professional, multi-disciplinary roister of queer arts, culture and history, takes place July 16 - 26, 2020. 

 

"Art Party" July 16 Sean Alistair photo

 

Art keeps us connected during the age of social distancing. The QAF and SUM Gallery remain steadfast in our commitment to artists amid the COVID-19 pandemic, with staff hard at work (from home) to maintain the integrity of our programming. 

 

"Rupture Probe" July 25 - Bemier Clarke photo

We’ve re-imagined the festival to make sure you get your Queer Art Fix from the safety of your own home. Please visit queerartsfestival.com to find out how you can attend all of our events remotely! 

QAF’s Wicked runs 11 days at our digital venue, coming soon. Highlights include Jonny Sopotiuk’s visual arts curating; choreographer Noam Gagnon’s raucously vulnerable Swan Song, This Crazy Show; Indigenous Burlesque with Virago Nation’s Too Spirited; and the latest offering from non-binary drag collective The Darlings.

"Underground Absolute Fiction." July 23 - Photo Kimberly Ho

There’s no place like home for the Wicked Witch of the West, green by devilment and through her magical aberrance. QAF 2020 forsakes the yellow brick road that leads only to a man behind a curtain colonizing our desires. Instead, QAF revels in the quintessentially queer traditions of scandal and excess with visual art, performance, theatre, music, dance and literary events!  

"A Queer Mentorship" July 25.

QAF’s Wicked re-imagines identity politics, exposing the implications of homo-normativity (sic) as erasure. This past decade has seen the mainstreaming of gay; sexual difference wins approval so long as it is palatable, marketable, and doesn’t stray too far from bourgeois notions of taste and morality. The commoditisation of queer experience is inextricably linked to the pathological effect of the queer body, where medical and sociological interventions adjudicate which anatomies and passions are accepted as authentic.

 

 

  Wednesday May 13, 2020  

Published 1 pm

 

Rollover on Prest Road

Three escape scary crash

Staff/Voice photo

 

A vehicle lies inverted in a ditch on Prest Road Monday.
 

Monday, just after 9:30 am, a vehicle left the road on Prest north of Highway 1 with three people inside. Two scrambled to safety leaving a 75-year-old woman behind trapped and inverted. Firefighters freed the woman quickly.

 

Fortunately there was a only a few inches of water in the ditch. These types of accidents can be particularly lethal because vehicles always rollover and more often than not the ditch is filled with water.

 

 

  Wednesday May 13, 2020  

Published noon

 

'Give Where You Live'

Chilliwack 'give-a-thon' fundraiser June 10

Leanna Kemp, exec. dir. CCC/Pixabay image

 

Non-profit charity fundraiser June 9, 2020.
 

Chilliwack is home to a large number of hardworking non-profit organizations who provide valuable and important services to the community. From poverty reduction, to building social connection, local charitable organizations have a large impact on almost every resident in Chilliwack.

The recipients of this Give A Thon are as follows: YMCA, Cyrus Centre, Ann Davis Transition Society, Sardis Doorway, Meadow Rose Society, Chilliwack Learning Society, Chilliwack Symphony Orchestra, Salvation Army, Chilliwack Bowls of Hope, Chilliwack Hospice Society, Ruth and Naomi’s, Canuck Place, Chilliwack District Seniors Resource Society.

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way funds are generated for the agencies many residents have come to rely on.

“The effects of this pandemic are far-reaching, and non-profits are far from immune,” said Mayor Popove. “Now it’s our turn to give back to the people and organizations who have given us so much over the years.”

On Wednesday, June 10 from 9 am to 9 pm, the Chilliwack Economic Recovery Network will host a virtual Give-a-Thon event to help raise funds for non-profit organizations in Chilliwack. The event will feature both live and pre-recorded content.

#chilliwacktogether

Donations of $10 or $25 will be collected via text, online or by cheque.

Online
To donate online, visit the event page.

Cheque
Cheques can be made payable to the Chilliwack Chamber of Commerce and mailed to 46115 Yale Rd, Chilliwack, BC, V2P 2P2

Cell Phone Text
TBA

For more information, visit the Chilliwack Chamber of Commerce.

Tax receipts will be issued for donations of $25 or more. Please include your name, address and phone number in the notes section for a tax receipt.

For more event information, visit

 

 

 

  Wednesday May 13, 2020  

Published noon

 

Hello, how are you?

Chilliwack to get 71 free smartphones

BC CDC/Voice file photo

 

Some smartphones will be available to community assistance services and low-income people.
 

Vulnerable people, including people experiencing homelessness, will have better access to services through smartphones distributed by the social service organizations that support them.

Through the Homelessness Community Action Grant program and a partnership with 7-Eleven, the Social Planning and Research Council of BC (SPARC BC) has been able to secure 3,500 smartphones to be distributed by community organizations who provide services and support for vulnerable people.

Chilliwack will be getting 71 and so far 5 groups have applied including; Chilliwack Society for Community Living, Sardis Doorway.

"The phones are targeted to vulnerable or ‘at risk’ groups who access to basic communication can be a lifeline – people fleeing violence, vulnerable and ‘at risk’ youth including kids in care, people who are homeless or with mental health and other challenges," Lorraine Copas, executive director, SPARC BC told THE VOICE Tuesday. "The phones allow people to connect to their support networks, stay safe and realize their needs are not forgotten amidst the chaos of COVID."

The smartphones can connect to Wi-Fi and include a pre-loaded $10 7-Eleven data card, so people have instant access to internet. The smartphones provide vulnerable people better access to vital online resources and services, including arranging medication and safe supply delivery and virtual doctor meetings.

 

 

  Wednesday May 13, 2020  

Published 3:30 pm

 

Shouldering harm

The Centre for Disease Control wants to know if COVID-19 has impacted your life

BC CDC/Pixabay image

 

Has the coronavirus affected you and your family's life?
 

How has COVID-19 affected your life, your family and your future? As the next stages of B.C.’s response to COVID-19 take shape, a new B.C.-wide population health survey is gathering valuable information about how COVID-19 has impacted the health and well-being of people in B.C.

The BC COVID-19 survey: your story, our future is available online at www.bccdc.ca/covid19survey in English and simplified Chinese. Those who can’t complete the survey online or need assistance in another language may call 1-833-707-1900, seven days a week, between 8:30 and 4:30, to take the survey over the phone.

 

 

  Wednesday May 13, 2020  

Published 3:30 pm

 

Bring it on home to me

Canadian nursing officers helped to repatriate citizens from abroad

Floriane Bonneville, CND/Voice file photo

 

Nursing officers deployed to bring Canadians home.
 

The Honourable Harjit S. Sajjan, Minister of National Defence, issued the following statement today in recognition of International Nurses' Day:

 

“Today we celebrate International Nurses Day as part of National Nursing Week. This year’s theme is ‘Nursing the World to Health,’ which is appropriate, given the current circumstances of the pandemic.

 

“We also commemorate the birthday of Florence Nightingale, who was born 200 years ago on this day. Universally recognized for her pioneering work in nursing, I would like to think she would be proud of the dedication and tireless efforts shown by our Canadian military nurses as well as all Canadian nurses, who, time and time again, are helping Canadians in need.

 

“During the initial outbreak of COVID-19, our nursing officers were deployed to China, Japan, and the United States, where they supported repatriation efforts of Canadian citizens. Most recently, during the ongoing pandemic, they have answered the call to care for Canadian seniors in long-term care facilities in Ontario and Quebec. As Canadians, we are proud of our brave women and men in arms and we appreciate the ongoing efforts and sacrifices they—and indeed, all Canadian nurses—are making on the frontlines in the fight against COVID-19.

 

Canadian Nurses Association

Nursing Officers In the Canadian Armed Forces

Canadian Armed Forces’ response to COVID-19

 

 

 

  Monday May 11, 2020  

Published 8:30 pm

 

Imagine that

Skewed school board, irresponsible school names, rainbow crosswalks and a dangerous WHO

Barry Neufeld, Trustee SD33/Voice file photo

 

Barry Neufeld speaks at the Evergreen Hall in 2018.

 

In response to Jessica Peter's Article in the May 7, 2020 issue of the Progress.

I have always been opposed to a two week spring break, and a few years ago the Teachers were too! It was not in their collective agreement, and so they filed a grievance which went to an expensive arbitration. The first time we tried a two week spring break when it included the Easter Stat holidays. But it created difficulty for families with no caregiver at home.

Where could they find or afford an extra week of childcare? It also created difficulties for our Support Staff, as they do not get paid during Christmas break or Spring Break. They get paid every two weeks, and trying to make it through Christmas and Easter with only one paycheck in the month is difficult. We tried to find ways to make it easier for the support staff, but these concessions cost money out of our very tight budget. We decided that we could not afford a two week spring break. But for next year, the teachers discovered that they liked the two week spring break, they changed their minds and were determined to get it.

After all, if a family is earning two teacher's salaries, it is convenient to head for Disneyland or Hawaii in the spring. But not everyone can afford that.

 

Administration came up with several creative alternatives to try and find a suitable compromise. But on Feb 28, the Arbitrator sided with the union.


The Board never met with their Lawyer until after arbitrators' decision. This was on March 10, but I do not recall him mentioning that we still had two days to appeal the Arbitrator's decision. So now the board has anticipated to obey the court order.

 

Our district has a strategic plan: and it emphasizes student achievement. There are four trustees on the board who seem to have their own strategic plan, not adopted by the entire board: They want to implement whatever is "politically correct," "progressive," union friendly or fashionable.


Instead of focusing on monitoring student achievement, they have put a lot of time and energy into issues like protests over pipelines, painting Rainbow Sidewalks and toleration of drug abuse.

 

One of the Hallmarks of this board is that the leaders form secret committees of their friends and relatives to advise the board. We are not allowed to know the members of those committees. One committee dealt with a parent's challenge over an explicit library book, and the other one was the school naming committee.

 

Despite the fact that no less than five buildings in the district bear aboriginal Names, (Chilliwack District Office, Chilliwack Senior Secondary, East Chilliwack Elementary, Cheam Elementary, and Mount Slesse Middle School) they wanted to add another very long and difficult name to a new school. I did not see the need. And I think the name "Imagine High" is silly. We don't have HIGH schools anymore, so the legal name will become Imagine High Middle Secondary School.

As far as the World Health Organization goes, I do not trust them, and there are many who agree that it is a corrupt organization. I don't care who adults sleep with or what they do to their bodies. They can add or take away any part that makes them feel good. But any organization that spreads the lie that one can be born in the wrong body and encourages children to mutilate themselves I do not trust!

Barry Neufeld, M.A.
Trustee on the Chilliwack Board of Education

 

 

 

  Saturday May 9, 2020  

Published 8 am

Chilliwack News www.thevalleyvoice.ca

75 years and still no  recognition

Veterans ask for illusive volunteer medal

Dave Palmer, Nepean, Ont/Voice file photo

 

Since initiating the effort for our Government in 2007, and a Member of Parliament, the honourable Pierre Poilievre reading the very first petition on 29th of February 2008 in support of this medal the efforts to seek Government approval have continued.
 

The supporting petition has been read in the House of Commons close to 30 times. Thousands of letters to all MP's and several to Prime Ministers continuously are either ignored or rejected. Why is this?
 

Thousands upon thousands of Canadians by appropriate petitioning have repeatedly ask for this medal and it begs the question as to why those elected to serve the people feel that their concerns about the honouring and recognition of Canada's Veterans is of no significance.
 

As seen by the two op-ed's by Lt. Gen Louis Cuppens, many are those who support the need for this medal. As comrade Jacques de Winter points out those that have served our nation remain unacknowledged while others who never served are deemed as Veterans because they wear a commemorative medal or two. So sad and in a way insulting to a Veteran.
 

Hence as repeatedly stated over the past 13 years Canada needs a Medal that all Canadians can recognize that the individual wearing it is a real Veteran.


Sincerely yours and in Remembrance of those that serve.

 

 

  Saturday May 9, 2020  

Published 8 am

 

Treasure troves

Metal detecting club challenge each other for top prizes

Staff/Submitted photos

 

A gold ring found by member Fred Dyon. Below, Linda Sexsmith and Brandan Kuczynski.

 

They're metal detecting enthusiasts. They come from all walks with the anticpation of finding something of value, an old coin or sometimes it's expensive jewellry, a piece of history, or just an item interest to talk about. That's what drives members of The Fraser Valley Treasure Hunters (FVTH).

"The group's focus is to make the hobby more enjoyable by having organised hunts and sharing our experiences with other members," says FVTH founder Mark Lewis

They go out on group hunts or solo throughout the month then meet to share their finds over dinners at the Abbotsford Legion. Prizes are handed out for top finds.



This was the first occasion the hunters had their meeting online.

 

"I thought the club needed something to keep them busy since we can't meet in person. Anyone could vote or send in a find," Lewis the The Voice in an e-mail Saturday. "We had no finds outside the club but we had 3 votes for a winner from outside the club."

 

The are times when Lewis and the group are called upon to do a special search for lost necklaces or other keepsakes.


New members are always welcome. See more on their website here. Connnect on Facebook here.

Watch a 3 minute
YouTube clip here.
 

 

  Saturday May 9, 2020  

Published 8 am

 

Heat wave for the Upper Fraser Valley

But it's still no record-breaker

Staff/Voice file photo

 

A little short-term heat is good for crops.

 

The beginning of summer is still 6 weeks away yet Chilliwack is already getting August temperatures. Environment Canada is calling for 30°C Saturday and Sunday in the Agassiz-Chilliwack area. Even though that kind of heat is unseasonable it's still not a record-breaker. On May 29, 1983, the temperature rose to a blistering 36°C. The average May temperature is 13.6°C.

 

A sign of global warming? We hope not and we hope it's not indicative of what could be a sizzling summer ahead of us.

The average for total rainfall for May is 102.5mm (approx. 4½ inches). The weather will cool off next week with a 60 per cent probability of rain Tuesday through Thursday in the Upper Fraser Valley.

According to Farm Progress, corn originated as a tropical grass so it can tolerate exposures to adverse temperatures as high as 44.5°C (112°F) for brief periods. Optimal daytime temperatures for corn typically range between 25°C (77°F) and 32C (91°F). Growth decreases when temperatures exceed 35°C (95°F).

 

 

  Friday May 8, 2020 

Published 8 am

 

Vehicle fire at Green Gables

Fire crews make quick work of blaze

Staff/Voice photo

 

Fire crews stopped the blaze from spreading from a vehicle to surrounding cabins.

 

Firefighters dragged their hoses out around 5:30 am for a vehicle fire at Green Gables in the 46000-block of Yale Rd. The vehicle sat between structures and crews were on it quickly to stop it from spreading to adjacent cabins. No word about the cause at the rundown cabins.

These types of fires are extra toxic because of plastic burning so it's always a good idea to stay well away.

 

 

  Friday May 8, 2020 

Published 8 am

 

Caring and coping

Alzheimer's Society of BC offering free web seminars

Gord Woodward, EC/Submitted photo

 

Caregiver support is an important element of webinars.

The Alzheimer's Society are offering free webinars; May 13 - Long-distance caregiving May 20 - “Why do I feel this way?” Coping with changes brought by dementia May 27 - Accessing care services during COVID-19 Register here.

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to dramatically affect the way of life in Chilliwack, providing support for the community’s most vulnerable residents is more important than ever before.

While maintaining physical distancing during this time is essential, the Alzheimer Society of B.C. is urging area residents not to forget about people living with dementia and their caregivers.

 "During this time of increased isolation, many people affected by dementia may feel disconnected from support networks and will face unexpected challenges," says Victoria Wilson, a Support & Education Coordinators for the Society's East Fraser region. For more infomration about what the Society does in the community, visit alzheimerbc.org

 

  Thursday May 7, 2020 

Published 10:30  pm

 

Quick crews contain townhouse fire

Chief says fire appears to be accidental

Mike Bourdon, Asst. Fire Chief, Prevention, CFD/Google image

 

Firefighters extinguished blaze without any injuries public or crew.

On May 7, 2020, at approximately 8 pm, firefighters from Fire Hall’s 1, 3, 4 & 6 responded to a structure fire in the 6400-block of Vedder Rd. Upon arrival, fire crews found smoke showing from a 2nd floor bedroom window of a two-storey townhouse unit.

Fire crews entered the home and quickly suppressed the fire which had started in an upper bedroom. There was minor fire damage to the interior bedroom wall and smoke damage throughout the rest of the unit.

Due to the quick actions of the fire crews, they were able to contain the fire and smoke to the townhouse unit. As a precautionary measure, fire crews ventilated unaffected units on either side of the fire unit and those residents were allowed back in to their units.

There were no civilian or firefighter injuries.

The cause of the fire appears to be accidental at this time and is still under investigation by the Chilliwack Fire Department.

 

  Thursday May 7, 2020 

Published 5 pm

 

City Hall news

Parade expenditure one of the highlights

Staff/YouTube image

 

All council members and the mayor were present at the May 5 meeting.

 

Rotary Christmas Parade
Council approved the annual $18,000 Rotary Christmas Parade grant. There was $7,400 left over from last year and Mayor Ken Popove asked what would happen to the excess money and if it would be used to top-up the $18,000. Staff responded by saying that the $18,000 would be stacked on the leftover cash from year's parade. Popove asked what the $7400 would be used for and was told it would be for seed money to maybe find sponsors and any added expenses the Rotary Club would incur.

Parks & Recreation
In a release on Wednesday, the City said dog off-leash areas in Vedder Park and off of Sheffield Way, as well as the off-leash section of the Vedder North Dyke Trail between Lickman Road and Webster Road, are once again open as of May 8, 2020.

Property Taxes Payments Pushed to Oct 1
In order to further assist homeowners who have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, this year, property tax payments for all property classes made by September 30, 2020 will not be subject to late payment penalties.

In order to ensure equal relief opportunity is afforded to all property taxpayers in Chilliwack, City Council has approved a measure that will extend the late payment penalty postponement date to all property classes. This ensures similar support is accessible to residential homeowners that may have been negatively affected by COVID-19.
 

To ensure the safety of residents and City staff, taxpayers are encouraged to pay property taxes through their financial institution’s online banking system, mailing a cheque, or via the drop box located at the main entrance of City Hall. Home owner grants can also be claimed online at mychilliwack.com. For additional information, contact the Property Tax Department at taxes@chilliwack.com or 604.792.9498.

While the extended penalty date provides a relief option for those negatively affected by COVID-19, the property tax due date remains July 2, 2020 and taxpayers that are able to pay by the due date are encouraged to do so.

 

Chilliwack Cycling Network Improvements Underway
Construction on three additions to the Chilliwack cycling network are well underway. The Valley Rail Trail extension, the Airport-Broadway corridor and Britton-Spruce upgrades collectively will provide a cycling link from Sardis-Vedder to downtown Chilliwack for riders of all ages.

The paved multi-use Valley Rail Trail extension spans from Airport Road to Hocking Avenue. This section is separated from the Southern Railway tracks with fencing, will feature pathway lighting to match the existing trail sections, and is anticipated to be complete in early May.

* Please note that these latest sections of the bicycle network are budgeted for $1 million. Without any expertise in bicycle lanes even though I've ridden bicycles across BC and Alberta from the coast a couple of times, it's understandable that funding be in place to cover upgrades to the Valley Rail Trail which is in contrast to the perceived usefulness of the other bicycle lanes in the city when no one uses them. I saw a bonafide rider once using a bicycle lane over the last 2 or 3 years. Construction of the Young Road overpass project won't begin until 2027.

 

In the mid-1950's my mother exited a vehicle a couple of blocks north of the Young Rd crossing and the vehicle went on to be run over by a train killing her friends. Since then there have been many accidents and incidents including suicides at the rough and tumble crossing. It continues to be a huge blunder by upper-level staff and council to ignore the urgency of the overpass project and not in the best interests of the entire community.

 

 

  Tuesday May 5, 2020 

Published 12:30 pm

70% of the Canadian economy is reliant on small business

Chilliwack City/Handout image

 

There’s a new way to support your favourite local businesses from home with the Chilliwack Economic Recovery Network’s “Support Local Chilliwack” campaign. Through this campaign, residents can buy gift certificates online from a wide range of local businesses to use at a later date. When a gift certificate is purchased online, the business immediately receives the full value of the gift certificate without the expense of payment processing costs.

“When local businesses suffer, Chilliwack suffers,” said Mayor Ken Popove. “The Support Local Chilliwack campaign is a great way to support small businesses, which are the heart of our community.”

Approximately 77% of all jobs are created in the private sector and the largest number of small and medium-sized businesses are in the wholesale and retail sector. These businesses have a significant impact on our community, as they typically invest around 68% of what they earn back into the local economy.

Visit chilliwack.com/supportlocal to purchase gift certificates from a wide range of local businesses. Gift certificates can be used for yourself or as a gift for friends. Larger organizations can purchase gift certificates to use as giveaways, promotional items, speaker gifts or silent auction items. Buyers are encouraged to wait a few months after the business reopens to use the gift certificate.

 

 

  Tuesday May 5, 2020 

Published 11 am

 

Board names new north side school

Trustees choose; Imagine High Integrated Arts Secondary School from submissions

SD #33/Twitter image

 

Brooke Haller has been hired as Principal of the new north side school; Imagine High Integrated Arts and Technology Secondary.

 

The Chilliwack School Board has chosen a name for the new north side integrated arts and technology secondary school, scheduled to open in September 2021. We are excited to share the name: Imagine High Integrated Arts and Technology Secondary School.

Additionally, we are pleased to announce that Brooke Haller has been appointed Principal of Imagine High Integrated Arts and Technology Secondary School. Ms. Haller is currently the Principal of the K – 12 Desert Sands Community School in Ashcroft BC. Prior to her current role, she served as Principal at Cache Creek Elementary School, was a District Technology Collaboration Teacher at School District 74, and a Classroom Teacher at Lytton Elementary/Kumsheen Secondary School.

 

Ms. Haller has a Master of Arts in Education from University of British Columbia, a Bachelor of Education from Lakehead University, and a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Lethbridge. Ms. Haller is an innovative, collaborative and creative leader and we look forward to welcoming her to the Chilliwack School District on August 1, 2020.

Imagine High will open September 2021 with students at the grade 9 and 10 level and will grow to a grade 9-12 secondary school by 2023. Registration will open in the fall of 2020.

 

 

  Tuesday May 5, 2020 

Published 1 pm

 

Message from the Mayor

Suggestions to de-stress during the pandemic

Jamie Leggat, Chilliwack City/Website image

 

Mental Health Week May 4-10, 2020, in Canada, is an opportunity to highlight the importance of mental health. As we wait to see what our new normal will look like, it is understandable that many people may be experiencing anxiety, depression or other mental health challenges as a result of the pandemic. In response to this, the Province recently announced they are expanding mental health programs and launching new virtual services.

 

Closer to home, Chilliwack Community Services has started providing free counselling support for anyone struggling with COVID-19.

 

Therapeutic support over the phone is available for anyone trying to cope with anxiety, depression, loneliness, grief and loss while living and working through this uncertain time.

 

I hope that residents will take advantage of these local and provincial services and actively take care of themselves, both physically and mentally. Don’t forget to follow #ChilliwackTogether on social media to help stay connected and see how your neighbours and friends are supporting each other right now. Even though we have to be physically apart, we can still be connected.

 

 

  Monday, May 4 2020 

Published 4 pm

 

Abbotsford Airshow grounded

Citing issue with social distancing

Jadene Mah/File photo

A vintage plane at the 2015 Chilliwack Airshow.

 

Due to the extraordinary circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Abbotsford International Airshow Society has made the decision not to proceed with the 2020 Airshow.

 

The event will be postponed for one year, returning in August 2021. 
 

The primary goal of the Airshow Society every year is to produce an event that is safe for all spectators and participants. The decision to postpone the 2020 Airshow is necessary to support the health and safety of these individuals and our community as a whole.
 

“It had been our hope that by August, the spread of COVID-19 would be minimized and our event would be able to proceed,” says Jim Reith, President of the Abbotsford International Airshow Society. “We were hopeful that the Airshow could be something positive for the community to look forward to, but it has become clear that preventative health measures such as social distancing are going to continue to be necessary beyond our scheduled event dates.”
 

“We want to thank our sponsors, partners and patrons for their continued support during this unprecedented and difficult time. We know our fans will be disappointed, but we look forward to bringing Canada’s National Airshow back to the skies over Abbotsford in 2021.” 
 

Current ticket holders will have their tickets honoured at the 2021 event or will be given the option of requesting a refund. Further information and instructions will be sent directly to ticket holders by email within the next few days.
 

For more information, please visit www.AbbotsfordAirshow.com 

 

 

  Monday, May 4 2020 

Published 8 am

 

Ryder Lake still waiting for high speed internet

Telus wants the money up front

Susan Van Luyn/Facebook photo

 

Originally published December 17, 2017

TELUS normally plans their builds 5 – 10 years ahead. There are no plans to bring Purefibre to Ryder Lake – at all. It can only be done, custom, with the already proposed contribution from the Ryder Lake Community. Read the entire letter here.

See also an open letter from Peter Hamilton published December 1, 2017.

 

 

  Sunday, May 3, 2020 

Published 3 pm

 

Family fun turns tragic

Two youths drown after ATV crashes

Staff/Flickr photo

 

RCMP found the bodies of two youths Sunday.

It was supposed to be a fun outing for a family of five out on the Foley Creek Service Road east of Chilliwack Sunday when just before 1pm, a “side by side” style off-road vehicle carrying the family left the road with initial reports saying the incident took place around 100 feet from the end of the lake.

According to Sgt. Krista Vrolyk, who said in an afternoon release, Chilliwack RCMP, Search and Rescue, BC Ambulance paramedics and a Medevac air ambulance and the Chilliwack River Valley Fire Department were called to the scene.

A landing zone for the air ambulance was set up at a CRV gravel pit.

"The Investigation has determined that an RV carrying a family of five, lost control and became submerged in approximately 15 feet of water," said Vrolyk. "Two adults and one child were able to escape but the two remaining youth passengers are unaccounted for." 

The RCMP Dive Team are currently searching the area for the two missing youths. Speculation is the children's bodies have been found now that the coroner has been called in to the scene.

“It is with deep sorrow, that we report that the bodies of two children have been recovered from this tragic accident,” Vrolyk, announced later adding the  BC Coroner’s Service is now investigating.  “The Chilliwack RCMP would like to extend their heartfelt condolences to the family and friends of those involved in this unthinkable tragedy.” 

 

 

  Sunday, May 3, 2020 

Published 8 am

 

Weekend by accident

Multiple mishaps on the road

Staff/Voice photo

 

Chilliwack firefighters assist an elderly driver at Main St. and Spadina Ave. Saturday.

There was very little traffic when a minor t-bone accident happened at Main Street and Spadina Avenue intersection just before 6pm Saturday. But even minor accidents can be serious when they involve seniors.

One of the drivers in this accident was an 84-year-old woman was checked by paramedics after complaining of chest pains.

Emergency crews were kept busy Friday with reports of three rollovers; in the Chilliwack River Valley, at Herrling Island on the Trans Canada Hwy, and at Chapman Road. Injuries ranged from serious to minor.

Mounties said that a 37-year-old woman was airlifted to Vancouver General Hospital with serious injuries after a Chilliwack Lake Road rollover in the area of Allison Pool and the Tamihi Bridge.

Traffic investigators from the Integrated Collision Analysis and Reconstruction Services (ICARS) were on scene investigating the cause of the crash. 

 

  Friday May 1, 2020 

Published 5 pm

 

Strictly Summer

Chilliwack City cancels Canada Celebrations

Jamie Leggat, Chilliwack City Hall/Voice file photos

 

A family decked out in Canada Day regalia in 2014.

 

Following the direction of BC’s provincial health officer, the City of Chilliwack is cancelling the 2020 Canada Day celebrations.

Dr. Henry recently stated that she does not expect to lift the public health order prohibiting mass gatherings this summer. The full day celebration, typically held on July 1 in Townsend Park, will not proceed this year in order to adhere to the public health orders, and to encourage physical distancing.

“We continue to follow the directions of Dr. Bonnie Henry, BC’s provincial health officer, in order to keep our residents safe,” said Mayor Popove. “I know this is disappointing for many, and I hope our residents will still find ways to enjoy the holiday safely.”

For ideas to stay connected while apart, visit chilliwack.com/connect

 

  Friday May 1, 2020 

Published 8 am

 

COVID-19 hits Chilliwack seniors facility

Eden Care Centre the first to come down with the coronavirus in the city

Fraser Health/Google image

 

Eden Care Centre housing units on Charles Street.

 

Fraser Health Authority posted on their website Thursday, April 21, 2020 that COVID-19 was detected at Eden Care Centre on Charles Street.

 

So far, Eden is the only reported local seniors facility to be struck by the illness.

 

Purple markings indicate COVID-19 outbreaks at care facilities. Red is gastrointestinal illnesses. (Clicking on the markers on FHA's website will give further details.)

 

Although visits will be off limits there now, the following rules will apply at all facilities currently not affected;

 

We ask all visitors to use our hand hygiene stations when they enter and exit our facilities, particularly if there is a reported outbreak.

If you have any of the following, please do not visit at this time:

• Vomiting or diarrhea
• Cough or flu-like symptoms
• Fever
• Rash

Hand hygiene stations are located at every entrance/exit in all our facilities and we ask that you use the alcohol-based hand rub so that you don’t bring any germs into the hospital, nor take any home.

Please read and follow the outbreak notice posters located at the entrance of any unit declared with an outbreak. If you need help or further information, ask one of the staff at the nursing station.

Help yourself to any disease information pamphlets located on the unit, regarding the particular outbreak.

You will be asked to repeat hand hygiene just before you enter the patient’s room and immediately when you leave their room.

 

Rather than waiting for local media to give you information, monitor the situation yourself on Fraser Health's Outbreak Page.

 

 

  Thursday, April 30, 2020 

Published 8 am

Gratitude Attitude

Chilliwack firefighters come together in support of one of their own

Staff/Voice photos

 

A procession of Fire Trucks wound its way around Chilliwack Wednesday in a show of support for fellow firefighter Jon Van Huigenbos who is at home on sick leave. Below are photos of him over the years.

 

Chilliwack firefighters wanted to show support for popular Team Leader Jon Van Huigenbos who is currently home on sick leave.

The procession on Wednesday evening staged at the Coliseum around 6 pm and crewed by firefighters wearing masks was led by Fire Hall No. 1 Tower (ladder) truck followed by assorted trucks from different Halls, slowly wound its way through downtown streets before stopping at Van Huigenbos' home ending back at the main hall on Cheam Ave.

There's good reason Van Huigenbos is Team Leader. If a chimney is on fire, he'll be there chewing though brick with an axe or chopping through steel mesh fences.

 

Van Huigenbos chops through a steel mesh fence.

 

He's never rattled. Always clearheaded and collected in the face of mayhem. In fire situations a crew can't can't move independently, it's done through teamwork – a hammer that takes down the fire. Van Huigenbos' the glue that holds the crew together who look to him for direction and leadership. Our prayers are with him.

 

A Go Fund Me page has been set up to help the family. Stay updated with Caring Bridge.

 

Dated Thursday, April 30, 2020.

 

Fire roars overhead as Van Huigenbos (yellow helmet) ties off a hose on the third floor at the Mary Street apartment disaster.

 

Van Huigenbos chops though a chimney in order to get a hose in and access the fire.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thanks for your years serving the community, Jon.

 

 

  Wednesday, April 29, 2020 

Published 8 am

 

Home Health Monitoring

Ten questions to Fraser Health and their answers

Staff/Voice file photo

 

 

TELUS is giving over 10,000 free mobile devices and $0 rate plans, valued at more than $5 million, to hundreds of organizations across the country. These connections are giving hospitalized COVID-19 patients the ability to virtually connect with loved ones, while also enabling isolated seniors, and low-income, homeless, and at-risk individuals with a much needed lifeline to families, health practitioners and vital social support services during this complex time.

1. Do we know how many people will be using the Home Health Monitoring program in Chilliwack? Province? I understand that Chilliwack is only getting 30 of the phones, so how is it determined which person gets a phone/tablet? Combination of age and lack of a phone? First come first serve? Obviously more than 30 people will be using the HHM program. Many people already have a phone and a computer so they won't need a phone/tablet. Will some of the phones be kept at the hospital for patient use?

The TELUS Health Home Health Monitoring solution is being used by hospitals across all six local health authorities and has already supported the remote monitoring of over 450 B.C. residents. There are currently a handful of individuals being monitored using HHM in the Fraser Health region who currently do not have COVID-19 but are considered at a high risk for contracting the infection, such as those recently discharged from the hospital and those managing chronic conditions.

Patients who are being remotely monitored using the HHM solution access the program through their own mobile device, tablet or desktop computer. If a patient does not have their own device, HHM device kits, including a tablet, can be provided to those that require them to ensure equitable access.

It’s important to note that TELUS Health provides the local health authorities with device kits and key components as requested. Each health authority ultimately decides what components are to be used in their respective regions.

For more information on how the HHM solution works, see this step-by-step video.

To clarify, the 10,000 mobile devices being distributed by TELUS are not part of this HHM program but instead are a part of the company’s Mobility for Good initiative. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, TELUS has given free mobile devices to Canadian organizations through its Mobility for Good initiative to enable important connections during this time.

Below are examples of criteria that Canadian organizations should meet in order to benefit from this TELUS Mobility for Good donation program:

• Organizations that support healthcare professionals and social workers during the crisis;
• Organizations that facilitate contact between COVID-19 patients, retirement/long-term care home residents and their relatives

TELUS is working with hundreds of non-profit organizations who have differing needs and uses for the devices. In some instances, the devices are being shared and distributed for vulnerable Canadians to connect with healthcare professionals and loved ones. In other cases, devices are delivered directly to young adults with mental health challenges and victims of domestic violence who don’t have access to technology.

2. For those who get a phone, and aren't computer literate, will outreach workers go out to help them and leave an operating handout?

For the TELUS HHM program, patients are contacted by British Columbia Public Health and provided the necessary support to begin using the solution on their own devices.

For the Mobility for Good program, TELUS is working with hundreds of non-profit organizations who have differing needs and uses for the devices. In some instances, like the Fieldstone Commons Sienna Senior Living for example, the devices are being shared and distributed among the 300 residents to connect with healthcare professionals and loved ones. In other cases, such as the Maple Ridge Pitt Meadows Community Services, devices are delivered directly to young adults with mental health challenges and victims of domestic violence who don’t have access to technology. These organizations will provide any help that’s required for recipients of the mobile technology; requests will be managed on a case by case basis.

3. If a person doesn't have a thermometer would outreach staff bring them one?

For the HHM program, thermometers can be provided by TELUS Health as part of the device kits, if requested by the health authorities. We recommend reaching out to the Fraser Health Authority or specific hospitals directly to find out more about tools they are providing to their patients who are participating in the HHM program as the requests vary.

4. How long will the program run? Permanent?

Through the B.C. Home Health Monitoring Program, the TELUS solution is a leading and transformative example of virtual care that enables more community, home-based and integrated care when and where patients need it.

Since 2013, HHM has enabled the remote monitoring of thousands of British Columbians living with chronic conditions including heart failure, COPD, diabetes/hypertension, multi morbidity and palliative care patients. The solution was recently updated to align with the Canadian Centre for Disease Control’s (CCDC) protocols for the monitoring of those diagnosed with, exposed to or are considered at a high risk for COVID-19.

The Home Health Monitoring Program is expected to continue for the foreseeable future.

5. Is this program coordinated with Chilliwack General Hospital?

The use of the TELUS Health HHM solution to remotely monitor COVID-19 cases has been approved by all six BC provincial health authorities, providing access to patients in every corner of the province. To learn more about its use in specific hospitals, we recommend reaching out to those organizations directly.

6. One of the releases I read said 29% of medical staff are involved. Does that mean they have tested positive? Is that true?

Our apologies for this one as it looks like the original data was misinterpreted. In an article published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal this past March, data from Wuhan, China showed high rates of COVID-19 transmission to healthcare workers at 29%. This is higher than rates seen with Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS, 18.6%) and SARS (21%).

7. Telus is offering a Grief Program, will there be one in Chilliwack?

We are looking into this and will let you know once we have more info. To help move along our internal conversations, could you provide additional context on what you want to know about the Grief program?

8. Because the phones/tablets will be used by patients in wards to communicate with family, can you say how many people are in ICU at CGH who need a phone for communicating with family?

Again, we would recommend reaching out to the Fraser Health Authority or specific hospitals directly to find out more about the current situation at their respective facilities.

9. How do people get a phone? Do they register? Where at?

Canadian organizations with the following goals are eligible for the Mobility for Good donations:

• Support healthcare professionals and social workers during the crisis
• Facilitate contacts between COVID-19 patients, CHSLD residents and their relatives

10. How is Telus dealing with the requests for phones?

TELUS is working to support as many eligible non-profit organizations as possible but inventory is limited. To date, more than 100 not-for-profit organizations have received donations from the Mobility for Good COVID-19 Emergency Response Program.

 

 

 

  Wednesday, April 29, 2020 

Published 8 am

 

Helping Local Business

CEPCO outlines available assistance

Netty Tam Chilliwack City/Voice file photo

 

An entrepreneur at the Immigrant Business Fair.

 

A collaborative committee has been assembled to help local businesses work towards recovery during this time of uncertainty due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Chilliwack Economic Partners Corporation, the economic development organization under the City of Chilliwack, assembled the team in late March to create and implement action items that would help local businesses both during and after the pandemic.

While the federal and provincial governments are taking extraordinary steps to help businesses across Canada and BC, the Chilliwack Economic Recovery Network is taking a local approach, and exploring options to support economic recovery in Chilliwack as soon as possible.

The Network will determine what can be done at a local level to deal with immediate challenges faced by local businesses, and look ahead to the post-pandemic recovery stage. By taking a collaborative approach, the Network will keep the lines of communication open and work together on ideas that will benefit the local business community.

See Federal financial information for individuals and business. Learn about how BC Hydro and Fortis can assist you during the COVID-19 outbreak.

 

 

  Wednesday, April 29, 2020 

Published 8 am

 

Safer transportation for staff and patients

CARP says seniors need influenza vaccine

Epiguard/Handout image

 

The Epiguard has been approved by Health Canada.

 

LifePort will be leveraging expertise and market penetration within air ambulance and broader aerospace while partnering with EpiGuard’s proven patient isolation solution to support the fight against Covid-19.


LifePort will design, engineer, and manufacture components that allow the EpiShuttle to be secured in a wide variety of transportation vehicles. Aviation or ground applications are designed to enable a seamless interface while providing a secure method of attaching the EpiShuttle in the vehicle. Through LifePort, the EpiShuttle is currently registered with both the FDA and Health Canada, and will be accompanied by a structural engineering report for the interface brackets.


The EpiShuttle by EpiGuard is a single-patient isolation and transport system, designed to provide maximum patient safety and comfort while allowing critical care and treatment to be performed. The EpiShuttle is designed to protect both the environment and patient from contamination.

“Both crew and aircraft are protected against contamination with the patient placed in an EpiShuttle. At the same time, the patient can receive lifesaving treatment. An ambulance usually requires 2-4 hours of disinfection between every contagious transport, and with an entire helicopter, it takes almost a day. Because the EpiShuttle is underpressurized and sealed it reduces the need for disinfection, saving valuable time and resources. Saving one and protecting everyone, the EpiShuttle is ready to deploy in North-America” says CEO of EpiGuard, Ellen Cathrine Andersen.
 

  Wednesday, April 29, 2020 

Published 8 am

 

Beyond COVID-19

CARP says seniors need more powerful influenza shot this year

Marissa Lennox, Agility PR/Pixabay image

 

he Canadian Association for Retired Persons (CARP) implores all provincial governments to ensure that the high-dose flu vaccine is publicly funded for as many seniors as possible, in preparation for this fall.

According to FluWatch, the 2018-19 season saw an annual seasonal hospitalization rate that was above average compared to the previous five seasons. Adults 65 years of age and older had the highest overall hospitalization rate (60%), and the highest proportion of deaths was reported among adults over 65 years of age (66%).

“With all that remains unknown as we continue the battle against COVID-19, we must also be prepared for what we know is coming,” says Marissa Lennox, Chief Policy Officer at CARP.  “We should be safeguarding our seniors as best we can, and that includes funded and easy access to the best-in-class options for both flu and pneumonia.”   

Given the rising concern in long-term care and residential care facilities, CARP also asks that all seniors living in long-term care or residential care settings should have annual immunization clinics to administer high-dose flu and pneumonia vaccine protections.  “It’s just common sense.  We know that we are living longer.  Seasonal flu and pneumonia claim a disproportionate number of senior lives each year, and can have a greater risk of transmission in these settings.”

FluWatch reported that 62% of reported outbreaks were in long-term care facilities, and a further 22% were in other settings (e.g. retirement homes, correctional facilities, etc.).  Certain provinces, like BC for example, do not have any programs that publicly fund high-dose flu vaccines for older adults, including for those living in long-term care homes.

Canada’s National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI) recommends that at an individual level, the high-dose flu vaccine—which contains four times the standard amount of antigen—should be offered over the standard dose flu vaccine to adults 65 years of age and older.

 

 

  Wednesday, April 29, 2020 

Published 8 am

 

Men's Health

Chilliwack Prostrate Cancer Support Group meets online with Dr. George Vrabec May 7

Dale Erikson, PCSG/Dr. George Vrabec website photo

Our next meeting will be at 7 pm on Thursday, May 7, and will be via web-conference. All past attendees will receive an email to join. Our speaker will be Abbotsford Urologist George Vrabec who'll be talking about incontinence and impotence after Prostate Cancer treatment. Open discussion to follow.

There will be an opportunity to ask questions and discuss any prostate issues and visit with PC survivors after the presentation. If you would like to attend, please email Dale. Attendees may ask questions on the chat line. Any questions, call Dale (604) 824-5506. 

 

 

  Monday, April 27, 2020 

Published 7:30 pm

 

Getting a handle on homelessness

Chilliwack one of 6 designated cities across Canada will receive $1.7 million from the federal government

Staff/Voice file photo

 

Chilliwack will be getting $1.7 million over four years to help ease homelessness in the city.

 

Happiness spread through groups representing homeless people in the Vancouver with the announcement that the BC government and BC Housing are setting up temporary accommodations in hotels and community centres for 686 in Vancouver from Oppenheimer Park and 324 from Topaz in Victoria for self-isolation until May 9. As of March 5, there were approximately 2,223 people in Vancouver identified as homeless.
 

"There, they will have their own living space and access to services, such as meals, laundry, washroom facilities, health-care services, addictions treatment and harm reduction, storage for personal belongings and other supports," said Mike Farnworth, Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General in a release Saturday. "1,739 beds that have been secured for vulnerable people, including those experiencing homelessness, in other hotel rooms, community centres and emergency response centres across the province." Visit BC Housing’s response for more information about their response to COVID-19.

 

 

Viveca Ellis, Community Organizer BC Poverty Reduction Coalition told The Voice Monday this action is a step in the right direction.
 

"It is something we have been advocating for, however so many are still left out, as well as all those in the crowded shelters and I have other concerns too," she said adding that more needs to be done immediately.
 

The Coalition has been saying that resources are "simply not sufficient to protect the health and safety of people who are unable to engage in physical distancing or self-isolation for lack of self-contained housing."


Homeless at Five Corners in Chilliwack.


The Federal Government has designated 6 communities across the country including Chilliwack to be eligible to receive funds from the Reaching Home: Canada’s Homelessness Strategy to help prevent and reduce homelessness in the city.

 

 

Under the program, and being identified as a "designated community", Chilliwack will be receiving $1.7 million in funding over the next four years to prevent and reduce homelessness in Chilliwack.
 

Chilliwack Mayor Ken Popove said in a release April 17th said "We were excited to learn of our successful application to become a “Designated Community”.


At the Chilliwack Courthouse.


Initially, the City will receive $296,000; and increase to $473,000 for the remaining years. Part of the City's immediate plans are the formation of an advisory board to develop "intake process for individuals and families who are at risk of homelessness by 2021-22."
 

The City will manage these funds and establish a community advisory board to support local decision making on how the money will be allocated in accordance with community priorities and a community plan. Part of the funding will also be used to design and implement a coordinated intake process for individuals and families who are experiencing or at-risk of homelessness by 2021-22.

 

 

  Sunday, April 26, 2020 

Published 6:30 am

 

Problem house boarded up for good

Chilliwack fire chief urges owners to do something with their vacant houses

CFD Fire Chief Ian Josephson/Voice photos

 

Flames vent out of the roof as crews battle the blaze from the front. The house was the scene of another fire in a RV at the rear last month (below).

 

At 3:35pm Saturday, firefighters from Chilliwack fire halls 1, 2, 4, 5 & 6 responded to a structure fire in the 46000-block of Second Avenue. When firefighters arrived they found a single-family residential home with flames and smoke showing from the building’s garage.

Firefighters gained access and quickly extinguished the fire.

There were no occupants in the house and it’s believed to be frequented by homeless persons.

There were no firefighter injuries.

The fire is under investigation by the Chilliwack Fire Department and RCMP.

Chilliwack Fire Department would like to remind owners of vacant homes there is an increased risk when it comes to firefighter safety and property damage including vandalism, theft and or fire damage.

 

  Saturday, April 25, 2020 

Published 6:30 pm

 

What's in a name?

Chilliwack trustees receive name submission for new K-8 school

Tsandlia, David, Derek, Keith, & Donna/Voice file photo

 

The new Elementary School needs a name.

 

Stitó:s Lá:lém totí:lt House of Learning pronounced Stee-tahs Lah-lem tot-ilt. That's the name several people explored and researched to come up with  for the new 930-seat school nestled between the Vedder Rotary Trail and Petawawa Road, at the end of Tyson Road. Now all that's left to do get the blessing from Chilliwack School Board. The following is a brief passage from a release sent out Friday. Upload the entire submission here.

 

Stitó:s is a “Place of Crossing,” name referring to a site near where the Chilliwack River breaks through between Promontory and Vedder Mountains to meet the Vedder River.

 

In planning this submission, we were cognizant of all our community members spanning across Chilliwack. Through a lens of inclusion we wanted to submit a name that spoke to what would be occurring within the walls of this school. How will the name for this school represent the value of learning and the importance of taking care of one another? We asked ourselves, what kind of school community do we want children to belong to, and what elements of local history and culture can we draw from in order to highlight the philosophies that remain integral to the learning and development process.


We know that schools are an important piece of our community, and they establish and maintain relationships across communities, families and territories. We also acknowledge the Chilliwack School District’s commitment to improving instruction through outdoor/environmental education opportunities; school culture and community by strengthening meaningful relationships within and across schools, and community; student social/emotional wellness through culture, climate and learning environment.


We believe that this name encompasses many of these commitments to student success and achievement, and supports strengthening meaningful relationships. The multiplicity of the name we chose to submit for this school, speaks to the responsibility to teach, learn, and share knowledge across generations and communities. We believe that within the walls of our schools we will be taking care of and protecting the students through transformative learning opportunities where students will be provided with local outdoor/environmental learning opportunities.

 

 

  Saturday, April 25, 2020 

Published 6:30 pm

 

Canada-wide caring

"Stay at Home" gala fundraiser will have a variety of speakers and entertainment May 2

Jessica Thiessen, Westminster Savings/Website images

 

 

Hailey Wickenheiser will be one of the keynote speakers

 

Prospera announced today a donation of $25,000 to Kids Help Phone and Anxiety Canada to help address the sharp increase in mental health needs of those in our communities who have been impacted by COVID-19. The donation will be split evenly between the two organizations. Additional donations will be made over the coming months to help support both the people and organization that are impacted by COVID-19 and its economic consequences.

“Prospera has always partnered with the communities that we work and live in, especially in times of greater need”, says Gavin Toy, President and CEO of Prospera.

“Now, more than ever, the Prospera community team is working hard to support established relationships and grow new ones to support our communities,” says Toy. “In addition to these donations, we will also be matching employee monetary donations up to $10,000 to Food Banks BC. This group provides support for food banks across the province, assisting over 80,000 individuals in need each month.”

“Prospera`s generous and timely donation makes a huge difference when we are expanding urgently needed services like our MindShift Groups for virtual anxiety treatment,” says Judith Law,  Executive Director, Anxiety Canada.

Prospera will join credit unions across Canada in support of the Stay at Home Gala on May 2, as a presenting sponsor. The proceeds from this event, which aims to raise $1M, will go to charities across Canada that have been most impacted by COVID-19.

“During these unprecedented times, it’s important to come together as a community and support the young people in our lives,” says Kids Help Phone’s Director of Western Canada, Harry Wierenga. “We are so grateful that partners, like Prospera, are supporting Kids Help Phone – thank you.” 

For more information on Prospera’s community giving please click here.  

 

  Saturday, April 25, 2020 

Published 1 pm

 

The year that was

Organizers pull the plug on live 2020 Harrison Music Festival

Bryan Cutler, HFS/File photo

 

Harry Manx played the Festival in 2019.

 

It is with sadness that the Board of Directors and staff of the Harrison Festival Society are announcing the cancellation of the 2020 Harrison Festival of the Arts, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Plans are to return with an exciting 2021 festival, from July 9-18, 2021.
We have furthered this mission primarily through the July Festival of the Arts, with live concerts on the beach and in the hall, art exhibits, theatre, literary readings, children's programming, and a vibrant artisan market.


The health and safety of our beloved festival community is paramount. With the bulk of our volunteers in a vulnerable demographic, we feel it would be irresponsible to produce a live event that puts the safety of these folks at risk, and of course the safety of our audience, staff, and performers.


While we may not be able to gather and dance with our friends to a live band in the Memorial Hall, or gaze out on the lake as we meditate on the skills of a masterful musician, there are other ways that we can get our social and cultural buzz in this time of limited social intimacy. The festival staff are currently exploring such options, whether virtual or, if possible, at a safe social distance, and we will keep you informed as these activities develop.

 

 

  Friday, April 24, 2020 

Published 8 am

 

Virtual moos

Chilliwack Fair organizers opt for online show this year

Nicole Williams, Chilliwck Fair/File photo

 

This Holstein can't wait for the show.

 

First, on behalf of the Chilliwack & District Agricultural Society we would like to thank all essential workers and their families that are dedicated to our community’s safety and well-being. We have been consistently monitoring the ever-changing developments related to Covid-19 and its impact on our community.

 

We take the safety of the public, our Board, volunteers, staff and all those involved in producing an event such as ours very seriously.


With the most recent Dr. Bonnie Henry announcement, along with the direction of the City of Chilliwack and Heritage Park, we have made the difficult decision that the 148th Annual Chilliwack Fair will not happen as originally planned this August 7-9, 2020. But...we are so excited to keep our 148 year old history going strong by holding a virtual Fair this summer!


We believe that in these difficult and unprecedented times we need to come together as a community, even if it is in different ways now. We hope that our event can continue to bring families together to create in traditional and new ways.


Thank you for all of your support in the past and moving forward! We are in the early stages of this new and exciting idea, so stay tuned for more information. Follow us on social media and sign up for updates on our website www.chilliwackfair.com.

 

 

  Friday, April 24, 2020 

Published 8 am

 

We're in this together

Growing Smiles hosts pop-up plant fundraisers for food banks throughout the Lower Mainland May 6-15

Jessica Girard, Growing Smiles Fundraising/Handout photo

 

.

 

Pop-up Plant sales allows us to connect as a community, support our local food banks and grow our gardens - all while social distancing.

 

Customers are able to order and pay for plants online and give back to a cause in their community. Then plants are picked up in a safe, contact-free way without going to a big store or waiting in a line. Social distancing has been kept in mind at every step in the process to ensure you get your plants safely.

 

Fundraising lead, Jessica Girard, said Growing Smiles Fundraising has been offering fundraisers in our communities for more than 15 years – selling flowers, annuals, herbs and veggies in the spring; as well as poinsettias and greenery in the winter.

 

“It’s really uplifting to see the number of people choosing to give back to their local food bank and support the most vulnerable people in these times,” Girard says.

 

Groups buy the plants at wholesale costs and sell them to friends/family for a profit. Girard said that the funds raised usually contribute to PACs, playgrounds, sports trips, grad ceremonies, dance tuitions, specialized surgeries and more.

 

The entire company is taking steps to reduce in-person contact and keep people safe. And Girard is confident that the community fundraisers are safe too:

• All orders are collected online, and paid for by credit card

• A central, outdoor location to host pick-ups
• Timeslots to alleviate crowding
• Contact-free pick-ups - Drive-thru - Curbside
• And for customers it’s one less trip to a big store or standing in a line to checkout!

Check out a pop-up plant sale near you and place an order at:

Vancouver – May 9

Surrey – May 12

Langley – May 14  

Abbotsford – May 15

Chilliwack – May 8

Victoria – May 6

See a full list of communities that are being supported here.

 

* 10% of every purchase goes to the community!

 

 

  Thursday, April 23, 2020 

Published 7 pm

 

If you don't believe it – sleep on it

The best part of losing is reading about the winner

Staff/File photos

 

Tusnady and his wife plan to travel.

 

Of all of the places to find out you’d won $16 million, White Rock’s Tibor Tusnady (Tee-bor Tushnady) probably didn’t think the washroom was going to be one of them.


Tusnady was at home with his spouse when he decided to check his Lotto 6/49 tickets for the April 15, 2020 draw; more specifically, he was in the washroom.


“I Googled the numbers,” explained Tusnady. “I took my ticket out and checked and just went blank. I tried to take a deep breath, let it register, and went back and checked again and again.”


After discovering he had matched all six numbers to win the $16-million jackpot, Tusnady froze. He didn’t know how to tell his spouse. He even took the night to sleep on it.


“Eventually, we fell asleep,” said Tusnady. “The next day, after lunch, I held her hand and said ‘Look, I have something to tell you and I don’t want anything to change with us.’”


After telling her the incredible news, Tusnady held video meetings to tell relatives across Canada and in Hungary, followed by a toast with champagne.


Tusnady purchased the winning $16-million ticket at the Elgin Esso on Crescent Road in Surrey, and claimed his life-changing prize through BCLC’s alternate prize claim process. He says travel will be on the family’s mind once the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic is resolved. He will let his spouse decide the first travel destination, but promises it will be first class all the way.

 

 

  Thursday, April 23, 2020 

Published 8 am

 

Balcony blaze minor

Firefighters make thorough checks

Staff/File photos

 

A firefighter holds a heat sensor Wednesday to check for hot spots in places that can't easily be seen.

 

Chilliwack firefighters were called out after reports of a balcony on fire in the 9400-block of Victor Ave around 9:15 pm Wednesday.

 

Thankfully it wasn't a big problem. It's unclear how the small fire began but in many cases cigarettes are the cause. Chilliwack firefighters call them "Plastic Flowers". That's when a cigarette is stubbed into a moss-filled planter pot on the balcony and after smouldering for a while fire breaks out then travels up the vinyl siding.

 

 

 

  Thursday, April 23, 2020 

Published 8 am

 

High freshet and other City Hall news

City of Chilliwack is drafting a "Child Care Space Creation Action Plan"

Staff/File photos

 

A rider at the opening of the BMX  Bike Skills Park on Cartmell Bike Skills Park April 29, 2013.

 

Freshet (Spring runoff into the Fraser River)
Reports from City Hall is that the freshet will drive the Fraser River higher this year. Estimates are the river will be at 116 per cent of normal flow.

 

That may be enough to put Ballam Road under water again. Last fall, the Federal government, including the City of Chilliwack designated $60 million for dike remediation but there's been no word about how far along they are on that.

 

Homeowners had to bolster their defences against the freshet in May 2011.

 

Childcare
"The City of Chilliwack is currently in the process of drafting a "Child Care Space Creation Action Plan" which will include strategies to increase the provision of child care spaces for children 0-12 years of age throughout the community as there is a demonstrated lack of child care in Chilliwack."

The 2019 Financial Statements
This has been prepared by the KPMG firm. There are some interesting items the City spent money on last year. You can download that off the City of Chilliwack website.


  Click for larger image.

Bike Skills Park
Having a centralized BMX Bike Skills Park for kids to burn off some steam is a good idea. The original Island 22 Bike Skills Park in the hinterland on Cartmell Road which cost around $200,000 to build is a bit too far out of the way for many local youngsters to travel. Plus, find a parent who wants their kids zigzagging down Young Road with dump trucks and trailers roaring by. The park is virtually empty however the new Bike Skills Park that runs adjacent to the Curling Rink promises to be a bigger draw with its location and artificial turf. At the Cartmell site, they used propane torches to dry it off first before it was used on opening day.

A BCAS paramedic attends to a pedestrian hit at Wellington and Courbold.

 

Wellington Ave and Courbold Street
The 2020 budget calls for upgrade work on the Mary Street corridor and Ashwell Road. There are no plans to deal with two serious and problematic spots such as the intersection Wellington Ave and Courbould Street. Park a pickup truck on the corner and the stop signs are are obscured. This one of the most notorious intersections in the city.


An excavator on a trailer went into the ditch at Prest and First in 2014.

 

Prest Road and First Ave Intersection
The other most dangerous intersection in Chilliwack is Prest Road and First Ave over the uncontrolled train tracks is a huge issue. There have been many rollovers into those ditches over  the years. Pickup trucks lead the list because they have a higher centre of gravity and tend to roll much easier. It's only been through God's grace that no one has been killed yet, but many have been severely injured.

 

Fixing problematic traffic issues today allows council to pay it forward to future councils.

 

Herrling Island

There's been no coordinated effort between governments to come up with ideas about reducing the carnage on the infamous stretch westbound at Herrling Island on the Trans Canada.

Young Road Overpass

Drivers will have to wait until 2007 before they are rolling with that. Until then there's going to be lots of front and read end work for mechanics to do.

Bike Lanes
Bicycle paths are nice to look at and think of but are unrealistic in Chilliwack because no one uses them. As much as the City wants everyone happily peddling along it's a political pipedream. It's hard to justify the tens of thousands of dollars the City's spent on them. But so be it, they're in.

Changing the Game on Apt Sizes
At the April 7 City Hall council meeting the question of densification came up regarding new apartments that are currently referred to as "affordable". Affordable means paying 30 per cent of  a person's income for rent. At upper-level city staff's suggestion, council would consider creating a bylaw which would decrease the size of affordable at the current minimum of 225 square foot living units to what're being called "micro townhouses" (stacked units 57m2).

This would mean condo and apartments being built now touted as affordable could be sold at market rates and the micro townhouses would take up the slack as per affordable units.

It's difficult to say if council would pass a bylaw package like this, or amend another one, but there are two real estate agents on deck.

 

Sometimes it's necessary to terraform thinking.

 

 

  Wednesday, April 22, 2020 

Published 4 pm

 

A word to the wise

Chilliwack BIA urges business owners across the city to go the extra mile to beprotect

Sgt Krista Vrolyk/BIA image

 

   

 

 

  Tuesday, April 21, 2020 

Published 4 pm

 

Starfish food program for kids a well-oiled machine

Chilliwack mayor reaches out to the community to assist with donations

City of Chilliwack/File photo

 

Mayor Ken Popove. File photo.

School provides students with much more than structured learning. It is a social outlet, a second home, and for some, a place to receive food when they are hungry. According to Chilliwack Community Services, approximately 600 children in Chilliwack come back to school hungry every Monday morning. To help address that, the Starfish Pack program was created to send home backpacks full of food for children and their families over the weekend during the school year. Without school proceeding as scheduled, these same children and families aren’t receiving the assistance they regularly rely on.

While some of us have been very fortunate to remain employed during the COVID-19 pandemic, I know many others have lost their jobs and could use some assistance. Over the past few weeks, people have been asking me about ways they can help others during this difficult time. After helping distribute hampers through the Starfish program, I wanted to share more about the program and challenge those of you who are able to support it.

Each week, Starfish program volunteers work to put together over 300 hampers of food. By May, they expect to be distributing close to 400 hampers per week. The approximate cost per hamper is $12, and the program needs donations in order to keep filling hampers each week.

I am issuing a Mayor’s challenge to raise funds for the Starfish Pack program. If you are fortunate enough to be in a position to help, I encourage you to donate to the program as part of my challenge. I’m throwing in the first $100 and hope you will join me!

Ways to donate

Online at www.comserv.bc.ca
Choose the Starfish program in the drop-down menu and write “Mayor’s Challenge” in the comment box.

Mail
Mail cheques to Chilliwack Community Services, 45938 Wellington Ave, Chilliwack, BC V2P 2C7 and indicate the donation is for the Starfish program through the Mayor’s Challenge.

In person
Drop off cash or cheque through the mail slot at Chilliwack Community Services on Wellington. Put “Starfish program, Mayor’s Challenge” on the front of the sealed envelope.

By phone
Call 604-792-4267 with credit card information.

Thank you, Chilliwack, for stepping up to the challenge to help others during this time.

 

  Monday, April 20, 2020 

Published 3 pm

 

Hindsight is 20-20

Trenton base barracks went empty at the beginning of the pandemic 

Dave W. Palmer, CD, Sergeant Ret'd/File photo

 

About a month ago, it was suggested to reduce the chance of spreading Covid19 and try and contain it, ensure a 14-day quarantine etc. I sent out the email below but obviously to no avail. Date: March 18, 2020 at 11:28 AM

Instead of a one-point of entry Canadian airport with mandatory 14 day quarantine, the seriousness of this now well proven deadly disease has some sad reflections. Especially for those that lost loved ones. We went ahead and allowed Canadians to come home and go about their business without much control over the assurance and insurance that they would immediately go into a 14-day self imposed isolation.

A friend from Quebec called me and was very upset at the number of his neighbours he saw returning from the south, Florida etc., and then going grocery shopping, visiting family, going back to work and other things, not in any way adhering to the 14-day required self-isolation.

 

He was rightfully quite angry and look at the situation, Cases of Covid19 soared. Cases sprung up as they have all over Canada because there wasn't stringent enough measures in place to ensure those that may and ultimately some were carriers of the disease . . . did what could have been done if all Canadians returning to Canada were to have been funneled into one airport.

 

They did this at the start using the base at Trenton where they had already used Yukon Lodge to isolate returning Canadians. Then they stopped! Why is this? Note: Trenton also has the empty Cadet Barracks that could have been set up and used in many ways which would have helped to reduce the spread.

Sadly, none of this happened and far too many infected Canadians came home and did not do what they should have done. Undoubtedly some of them spread the disease and we are paying the price for it. China is undoubtedly into its 2nd and possibly even third waves of Covid19 as the attempt of containment in Wuhan missed some 5 million people who left before the lock down.

I don't know if the information we are getting from China via the World Health Organization is very accurate. But given a few thousand Canadians returning to Canada and the widespread effects we are now facing pales in comparison to 5,000,000 million potential carriers leaving the epicentre of the Corona Virus, Covid19, and travelling all over China, it will be pretty bad and we will have to rely on getting facts from mm, whistleblowers.

In any event, the best we can do for a few more weeks and perhaps months is to keep our distance when and only when we have to go out for medicine, groceries or a needed Doctor's appointment and wash our hands frequently.
 

Be well all, stay safe,
Dave Palmer

 

 

 

  Saturday, April 18, 2020 

Published 3 am

 

Fabric of the community

CCC therapists offer free counselling support 

Brianna Carson, CCC /Website photo

 

Chilliwack Community Services began offering free counselling services this week in response to mental health support needs in the area. Registered therapists are now available Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm to speak with anyone who needs therapeutic support.

 

“We recognize that during these times of huge adjustments across all sectors of our community, we wanted to offer something tangible and easy for people to access. We’re all dealing with big feelings in one form or another, and with physical connections being so limited right now, it’s important that our community steps up in ways that can fill those gaps of connections and support. Providing clinical services to the rise in mental health challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic is important and like many others, we are responding to that need,” said Helen Edwards, Deputy Executive Director and Director of Therapy Services.

 

This service is not a crisis line, but therapeutic support from registered clinical counsellors with specific training in trauma-informed practice. People can get support for anxiety, depression, loneliness, grief and loss while living and working through this pandemic, as well as talking through job loss and future uncertainty, talking to kids about Covid-19 and anything else people are struggling with during these uncertain times. This service is open to all; it is free and does not require a referral.

 

Helen Edwards is Deputy Executive Director
Director: Early Years, Family Services, Therapy Services.
She joined Chilliwack Community Services as a director in December, 2017. She comes with over 15 years of post-graduate experience in combined clinical, frontline, and leadership work. Her background is in mental health clinical therapy and she’s worked in a variety of settings with homeless youths and families, child protection and court, recovery from abuse and neglect, trauma work, severe mental illness and psychosis recovery. She has also ran groups that specialize in parenting, psychoeducation, anxiety, and recreation. Helen’s area of passion is in trauma work, early intervention, outreach, and family work.

 

 

  Friday, April 17, 2020 

Published noon

 

Mission Institution has third largest COVID-19 infections

First Nations want more testing and care of prisoners after inmate death

BC First Nations Justice Council, UBCIC /Website photo

 

 

Grand Chief Stewart Phillip

 

First Nations leadership across BC is united in calling for immediate action to protect incarcerated peoples amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.

The COVID-19 outbreak at the Mission Institution is now the third largest outbreak in the Province of BC, with the first inmate tragically passing away on April 15, 2020.

Senior health and corrections officials have verified that almost 40% of the confirmed cases of COVID-19 at Mission Institution are among Indigenous inmates despite Indigenous people making up just 5% of the population in BC.

Doug White, Chairperson of the BC First Nations Justice Council calls the situation an urgent crisis and a ‘ticking time bomb.’

 

“Indigenous people are vastly over-represented in prisons and carry more than our share of the burden of health issues and chronic disease. These men were sentenced to a term of years, not to death. The duty of care that is upon the Institution in the midst of this crisis requires immediate and comprehensive action to avoid further tragedy.

 

This situation requires extra-ordinary efforts and collaboration.” The BC First Nations Justice Council, BC Assembly of First Nations (BCAFN), the Union of BC Indian Chief (UBCIC), and the First Nations Summit (FNS) call on the Government of Canada and the Province of BC to urgently implement the following safety measures:

• Immediately test all inmates and staff at the Mission Institution;
• Increase safety and screening measures for workers entering and exiting the facility;
• Enhance medical surge capacity onsite via mobile medical units to effectively treat emerging cases;
• Enact isolation protocols which ensure that inmates who test positive are isolated in health facilities with regular monitoring and as much comfort as any other individual, along with meaningful human contact compliant with social distancing;
• Increase access to counselling and mental health resources in every federal facility in order to mitigate the psychological and emotional consequences of isolation measures and reduced social contact;
• Develop release plans for as many people as possible, prioritizing those with pre-existing health conditions who are at increased risk due to COVID-19, and immediately release anyone classified low risk with a home in community where they will be able to self-isolation;
• Include among release criteria a plan for secure housing, financial aid, and community safety, and provide support in meeting these criteria; and
• Test and isolate all individuals for 14 days before re-entering community.

 

 

  Thursday, April 16, 2020 

Published 8 am

Pump it up

The City of Chilliwack is spending $700k  on another Pump Track

Staff/Voice file photo, City and Google images

 

 

Opening Day in 2017 at the first Pump Track on Cartmell Rd.

 

Chilliwack is getting another Pump Track. This will be the second full-fledged track in Chilliwack. The first track is a bit out of the way on Cartmell Road.

 

At the latest City Hall council meeting the motion was passed to award the bid for the Pump Track project to Hoots Bicycle Accessories Ltd. who broke ground. Hopefully the kids will ignore the name and not go out there stoned on weed or they will hurt themselves. Always wear a helmet.

 

The new Pump Track (black lines) shows the run.

 

So what's a Pump Track? It's a run for BMX'ers to go and break bones while participating in various shenanigans, learning tricks and burning off energy. Despite breaking bones, this promises to be a wonderful place for kids to go ride and play or for others to warm up for championships with some world class jumps that'll be included in its designs.


This second track will be right smack dab in the heart of activityland in Chilliwack off of Courbold.

 

Opening Day at the first pump track on Cartmell Rd.

 

Council held their last meeting in an online conference call

 

Highlights include;

• A track of over 500 linear meters;
• A figure 8 crossover, pass under track feature which will be unique

• Capable of hosting national and international level pump track race events
• Competition standard staging, bike prep areas with less mud
• Aesthetically appealing overall design

It's unclear the timelines of the project but watch for it soon.

 

 

  Thursday, April 16, 2020 

Published 8 am

 

'Alt. Pop. Repeat.'

Up close and personal with Bif Naked

Staff/Handout photos

 

Sadly, a resident was seriously injured in the fire. Below, Chrissy Newton.

 

Toronto-based live streaming vanguard Marie Nicola and award winning public relations agency owner of VOCAB Communications, Chrissy Newton, releases the fourth episode of their podcast “Alt.Pop.Repeat.” (APR) with punk rock star, author, songwriter, manager, producer and human and animal rights activist, Bif Naked

On APR, Bif speaks to her personal journey on fighting breast cancer, what it was like during the late 1990’s and early 2000’s as a thriving female pop punk artist during the second punk wave moment, her new single Jim and how she views punk in mainstream pop culture currently. 

After Bif’s interview, Chrissy and Marie then explore the forming of the counterculture punk movement, what it means to be punk today and how punk culture has influenced today’s music, fashion and street art scenes. By asking the question, is punk dead? 

You can listen to the episode here. The show can also be found on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, YouTube and Google Podcasts.

 

 

  Thursday, April 16, 2020 

Published 8 am

 

Talk the walk

2020 Walk for Alzheimer's fundraiser online this year May 31

Freya Tomren, ASBC/File photo

 

The IG Wealth Walk for Alzheimer's walk will be setting precedents this year with an online fundraiser.

For the first time ever, the IG Wealth Management Walk for Alzheimer’s will be held online and on a single day: Sunday, May 31. The 2020 event, which traditionally takes place in communities across B.C., will assume a different format given COVID-19 and the crucial need for physical distancing. However, now, more than ever, we need to connect to honour and celebrate people affected by dementia.

“Together, we can support people affected by dementia during these unprecedented times and ensure that physical distancing does not result in social isolation,” says Alzheimer Society of B.C. CEO Maria Howard. “Staying socially connected is beneficial to brain health, and it is crucial to keeping our spirits high. This is a real opportunity to show we are a country united to support people affected by dementia, and that, together, we make memories matter.

The online event will start at 9 a.m. PDT on May 31 and can be accessed from anywhere with an internet connection. Participants will be able to stream the Walk live, while joining in the fun from their living room, back yard or balcony. The broadcast will feature participants from all across Canada who will share their personal stories of how dementia has affected their life, as well as competing in fun challenges and walking in a safe space.

It’s easy to get involved: sign up at walkforalzheimers.ca to represent your local community and access updates about the online Walk experience. Funds raised will help fund programs and services to support people living with dementia in your local community. They will also help enable research into the causes of and cure for dementia.

While COVID-19 has changed many ways we are currently living and interacting, one thing remains: the Canadian spirit of togetherness. We hope you will join us to show that no matter what the world looks like, we are still united to support people affected by dementia.

 

 

  Thursday, April 16, 2020 

Published 8 am

 

Serious trailer fire

One airlifted to hospital

Staff/Handout photos

 

Sadly, a resident was seriously injured in the fire.

On Wednesday a trailer fire broke out around 9:00am in the 3900-block Columbia Valley.

The Chilliwack Fire Department was dispatched to assist Cultus Lake Fire Department with the blaze.

One person with serious injuries was airlifted to a hospital.

"City of Chilliwack Firefighters responded from Hall 4, and on arrival supported Cultus Lake Firefighters who had already set up an exterior attack on a well involved structure fire, in conjunction with exposure protection hose lines preventing the fire from consuming adjacent homes," said Warren Mazuren, Cultus Lake FD in a release Thursday.

One home was destroyed by fire, while another suffered heavy smoke and heat damage. There were no firefighter injuries.

The neighbouring trailer had too much water and heat damage the resident could not return home so he was assisted by Emergency Social Services.

The cause of the fire is unknown at this time and appears to accidental in nature.

 

 

  Thursday, April 16, 2020 

Published 8 am

 

Will taxes go up once things are rolling again?

COVID-19 costs predicted to unload onto Canadian ratepayers

Niels Veldhuis, Pres, FI/File photo

 

PM Justin Trudeau celebrates his victory at the Coast Hotel in Chilliwack.

 

To be honest, I don't watch or watch any Canadian TV, listen Canadian radio, read print media but sometimes it's hard to avoid and today Fraser Health sent an e-mail.

 

"Canada could be in a much better position to weather the COVID-19 storm. In fact, the government’s balance sheet could have been $100 billion bigger if the Trudeau government had displayed the fiscal discipline of past federal governments, including the Chrétien and Martin Liberals.
 

But because the government chose a less prudent fiscal path, the COVID-19 crisis will impose a greater debt burden and higher future interest costs on Canadians.
 

Today's National Post features an important commentary by Jason Clemens, Jake Fuss and Milagros Palacios. Please check it out here

 

 

  Wednesday, April 15, 2020 

Published 11 am

 

Province extends State of Emergency to April 28

FHA teleconference today reveals Public Health Order to close all gyms and fitness clubs by May 31

Staff/Handout photos

 

Dr. Martin Lavoie, CMHO and Dr. Victoria Lee, Fraser Health’s president and CEO (below), spoke about the forced closures of gyms and fitness clubs as well as other questions via teleconference Wednesday.

Today, Dr. Victoria Lee, Fraser Health’s president and CEO, and Dr. Martin Lavoie, Fraser Health’s chief medical health officer held a limited teleconference to outline the provincial government ordering the closure of public and private gym facilities including private and gyms in apartment buildings by May 31. Owners face fines if they ignore the closure order. There's no word on how much the fines would be.

"Home Gym's are okay as long as you don't have a large gathering," said Lavoie.

When pressed why it took so long to come up with the closure order, Lavoie passed the responsibility from the Fraser Health Authority (FHA) onto the provincial government's shoulders saying that once they got the order they went out and directly contacted the gym owners directly.

"Most closed on their own several weeks ago. The provincial orders did not include these facilities," he explained.

Regarding Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Lee told The Voice that they have an adequate supply on hand.

"Our medical staff of are the utmost importance for us and so we have taken extraordinary measures to ensure we have quick supplies," she said.

When asked about the number of beds available, Lee also told The Voice they have enough so far.

"Currently we have 50-60% of our occupancy and in terms of the number of our beds available are around 900 and of course we have developed quite a comprehensive so quite confident in our ability to respond to this  (including the  surgical and N95 masks)."

But Lee admitted to only having 2-3 days of PPE available for staff at most long-term care homes. Currently 265 long-term residents and assisted-living people have tested positive for COVID-19.  

When asked by The Voice how many long-term care patients have survived, both doctors had no answer and said they'd send those numbers over later. But they still weren't available at press time.

"We have daily check-ins with our facilities, weekly calls as well and we do ask about PPE requirements in case they are running short so we do have a mechanism to check for adequate supplies doing. Lee said the plan is to distribute PPE's to where the highest risks occur so they could respond quickly. "We do have to prioritize and we can't be giving out months of supplies at hand. Supplies can be mobilized within a couple of hours if we are aware of any additional concerns".

When The Voice asked about the number of beds available to "street-entrenched" people she said they had 4 sites (in FHA) with 179 beds –  including ICU's.

When asked if there were enough PPE's to go hand out to places like homeless shelters, Lee skated around the question by saying "the masks will be going to designated sites who need them."

Regarding getting faster testing kits, Lavoire told The Voice they were looking at options.

Click BCCDC graph and map for larger images.

"We are looking into additional types of testing so I don't have an exact date, so I need to examine the quality of any testing kit or kit of new technology are provided by various companies. The assessments of those is currently underway so I can't predict exactly when but hopefully soon we'll have additional testing capacity."

Shortly after the FHA teleconference, the provincial government announced they're using the Emergency Program Act to extend the state of emergency in BC through to April 28, 2020.

The release said there are safety new PHO enforcement measures and assistance to renters and low-income people;

• Self quarantine law if arriving from another country

• The creation of a COVID-10 supply hub used to find needed supplies and distribute to locations that need them;

•  Taking applications for a temporary rental supplement from renters who are in need of assistance experiencing a loss of income during the pandemic. There was no mention of how much that would be;

• Creating an "Emergency Relief Support Fund "for children and youth with special needs and their families that will provide a direct payment of $225 per month to eligible families over the next three months;

• Implementing a series of temporary supports and supplements to ensure B.C.’s most vulnerable – including people on income or disability assistance and low-income seniors – do not encounter additional barriers during the COVID-19 crisis;

• $5 million for mental health services

Watch The Voice for more details as they emerge and for daily coronavirus updates.

 

 

  Wednesday, April 15, 2020 

Published 11 am

 

Talk of the town

The best part of losing is reading about the winner: Coldstream, BC man wins a hot $1 million on the 649

BC Lotto/Handout photo

 

A man in Chilliwack watches as an off-duty paramedic assists a woman on the ground, while a young boy cries from inside the truck in 2017.

Coldstream’s Randall McDuff is still pinching himself as he lets the feeling sink in after winning the Guaranteed Prize of $1 million from the March 28, 2020 Lotto 6/49 draw.

After checking his numbers at the 7-Eleven in Vernon from where he purchased the winning ticket, McDuff reassured his wife that his irregular breathing was for a positive reason: excitement.

“When I went out to the car, I was checking my breath and she asked me if I was having a heart attack,” says McDuff. “When I told her that I had won, at first she didn't believe me and I had to tell her a few times… She was very excited for me.”  

McDuff, who claimed the life-changing prize using BCLC’s temporary alternate prize-claim process, has been playing Lotto 6/49 and Lotto Max for more than 20 years and has never traveled outside of Canada.

He said the $1 million win will change his life and, once COVID-19 allows him to resume normal activities, he may take a trip to Australia. More fishing and golfing are also in the plans.

“Winning doesn't seem real, and I have to remind myself that I have won $1 million dollars,” McDuff says.

Once the life-changing realization has really settled in, McDuff says his first priority is to visit family in Manitoba after several years of not being able to. “My family is older and I would like the opportunity to see them again once I am able to.”

To support players in claiming lottery prizes during this time, BCLC has implemented alternate prize-claim processes for winners. To learn more, visit BCLC here. .

Players can now check their lottery tickets anytime, anywhere on iOS and Android devices using the BCLC Lotto! App.

 

 

  Tuesday, April 14, 2020 

Published 8 am

 

Abuse hurts everyone

Ann Davis "Prevention of Violence to Women Week" fundraiser April 12-18

Patti MacAhonic/Voice file photo

 

A man in Chilliwack watches as an off-duty paramedic assists a woman on the ground, while a young boy cries from inside the truck in 2017.

Ann Davis Transition Society (ADTS) is raising awareness of how domestic violence impacts women and children and our community at large in recognition of the BC Government’s proclamation that April 12-18, 2020 is recognized as Prevention of Violence Against Women Week.

At Ann Davis Transition Society (ADTS) we take our role as an advocate for women, children and families very seriously as we navigate the impacts of COVID-19. When you add variables such as gender, race and socio-economic backgrounds this impacts how this pandemic is experienced. Crisis can exacerbate inequalities and create more situations of violence against women and children.

Patti MacAhonic, ADTS Executive Director, says that, “Unfortunately statistics show that with financial strain, stress of job loss and being shut in the incidence of domestic violence raises. More calls are being made than ever before globally and now by children concerned about the safety of their mothers, the average age of child callers is 12."

“ADTS has seen many changes in our 40 years, and even though the future feels unclear through these pandemic times, we will continue to serve women, children and families as we always have, with care and compassion to meet their needs and to keep them safe from violence.”  

Not many times in recent history has the global population been engaged with a shared experience. While shared, it is unfamiliar… social distancing, working remotely being apart from each other but keeping in touch through social media and phone. What is clear is that people are finding ways to build community even in the most difficult of circumstances and we must all work together to focus on a stronger, more inclusive, safer and less violent future for everyone.

We encourage you, the public to express your commitment to reducing and preventing violence against women and children in our community. How you can do this is by supporting our good work to help the most vulnerable women and children in our community be safe.

We are starting a campaign of 20+ 20 in year 40 of service and are asking that supporters send donations of $20, $40, $200 or $400 through our donate now link on our website at. anndavis.org or send a cheque to 9046 Young Rd. Chilliwack, BC. V2P 4R6.

We THANK YOU for your commitment and dedication to preventing and ending violence against women, children and helping families especially during these extraordinary times.

 

  Tuesday, April 14, 2020 

Published 8 am

 

Chilliwack loses big outdoor events over virus

A bleaker outlook on summer without Fortin's Car Show and Party in the Park

Kyle Williams/Voice file photo

 

Shows have been cancelled over COVID-19 concerns.

The Downtown Chilliwack BIA is proud to host two of the communities largest, free, family events, the Fortins Village Classic and Party in the Park. Events of this size take considerable time to plan and organize, and the efforts go well beyond the organizing committee. Commitment is required from valued sponsors, partners, volunteers and many others in the months leading up to event day.

Unfortunately, it is nearly impossible for organizers to commit, or ask partners to commitment, to any fixed date or even tentative plans at this point. As a result, the BIA has made the difficult decision to cancel this year’s events, with no plans to reschedule for 2020. We feel that planning a large gathering at this point is not the right thing to do, and it is not reasonable to plan alternate dates when the calendar has never been so uncertain.

The BIA would like to take this opportunity to thank all the sponsors, partners and volunteers that help make downtown events so successful, as well as the thousands of loyal patrons and visitors that attend each year. We hope to see you all again very soon.

The BIA will remain open to working with the City of Chilliwack and other partners on more short-notice events if and when the opportunity arises.

On behalf of the BIA and hundreds of downtown businesses, thank you for your continued support of downtown events. Stay safe and please continue to support local business.

 

 

  Tuesday, April 14, 2020 

Published 8 am

 

Suspicious fire

McIntosh Drive incident leaves burning questions

Staff/Google image

 

Shrubbery caught fire without explanation early Tuesday.

  were called out a hedge fire near two transformers the 45000-block of McIntosh Drive around 2:30 am Tuesday.

Reports at the time were that the blaze itself was approximately 6 metres in length by 4 metres long.

Crews were had it knocked down quickly before it could spread.

There is a small cubby hole behind the transformers large enough to hold one or two people.

If anyone has any information about this fire, they are asked to call the RCMP at 604-792-4611 or anonymously through Crimestoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or www.chilliwackcrimestoppers.ca

 

  Sunday, April 13, 2020 

Published 8 am

 

Fire on the mountain

Carelessness causes blaze, fire chief says outdoor burning is prohibited

Mike Bourdon, Assistant Chief, Fire Prevention, CFD /Google image

 

The homeowner suffered scrapes and bruises trying to put out the spreading fire.

approximately 4:15 pm on April 12th, 2020, the Chilliwack Fire Department was dispatched to assist Chilliwack River Valley Fire Department for a reported Wildland Interface fire located in the 4000-block of Hood Rd in Chilliwack River Valley.

A property owner was clearing his property and burning brush next to a forested hillside. The fire from the brush pile got away from the property owner and quickly extended up the hill.

City of Chilliwack (CFD) firefighters responded from Halls 1 & 4 along with BC Wildfire Service (BCWFS).

Upon arrival Chilliwack River Valley (CRV) Firefighters were aggressively attacking the fire on a steep hillside in a heavily wooded area and knocked the fire down before it spread to the top of the hill.

Hot spots on the hill were quickly extinguished by fire fighters from CRV, CFD and a BCWFS attack crew.

BCWFS later confirmed that the fire was fully extinguished. There were no civilian or firefighter injuries. The cause of the fire is accidental.

The Chilliwack Fire Department would like to prompt property owners to check with your local fire department, municipality or regional district websites for any restrictions before starting an open-air fire.

Just a reminder, on March 25th, 2020 by order of the Fire Chief, City of Chilliwack Council made the decision to terminate the 2020 spring burning season. Chilliwack's ban extends until the end of the spring burning season (April 30th).

The Province of B.C. (Ministry of Environment) has also issued a burning ban until Wednesday, April 15th, 2020, for the entire Chilliwack region. These restrictions are directly in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and the effect pollutants have on viral respiratory infections.

For the most up to date information on the provincial burning ban or any other related restrictions please visit the BC government website.

 

 

  Saturday, April 11, 2020 

Published 9:30 am

 

Happy Easter to you

A day we couldn't forget anytime soon

Staff/Voice photo


Yale Rd overpass is bare of traffic around 10 am Easter Sunday.

 

Salish Park, Chilliwack.

 

Two benches behind  fountain mist at Salish Park.

 

Main Street.

 

 

  Saturday, April 11, 2020 

Published 9:30 am

 

Surge protection

Fraser Health Authority ready for overflow of COVID-10 patients

Staff/YouTube image

 

Victoria Lee shows one of the isolation units at Royal Columbian Hospital.
 

Lee, CEO Fraser Health Authority (FHA), walks through a video of their Mental Health and Wellness and Substance Abuse Centre speaking about their COID-19 Capacity Plan.
 

FHA's surge capacity plan includes 80 beds at the Centre at Royal Columbian Hospital.


"We have developed a comprehensive and phased approach to acute care capacity planning,"
says Lee. "This is the building that will be used for our COID-19 acute search plan as well additional patients from our existing hospital site. If we need to respond to a surge in patients due to COVID-19 we are ready."


Should they need to expand capacity in the Fraser Health region the 80 beds will be for non-COVID-19 patients.

"As you can see the hallways are very spacious allowing for a lot of physical distancing as needed and things like the sinks are also touchless," explains Lee.

All of the rooms are single-occupancy with a lot of space and washrooms in each.

There are an additional 84 beds in the surge plan at the Weatherby Pavilion long-term care facility.

 

Watch the 2-minute FHA video here.

 

 

 

  Friday, April 10, 2020 

Published 8:30 pm

 

Crude country

Why make oil production an essential service in a glut? Better coronavirus testing needed for crews

BC-Alberta crew bus driver/Dru Oja Jay, Dominion photo

 

Alberta tar sands. Are they really needed right now?
 

is becoming increasingly apparent that oil companies who run work camps north of Fort McMurray are not being completely, or transparent, or honest with regards to handling of the COVID19 pandemic.

 

Some camps are being more careful than others regarding how they deal with asymptomatic workers and weather they ship them home on planes without getting tested, leaving the rest of us to wonder who has it and who doesn’t.

But for some companies it's at your own risk. 

 

Most workers here in Fort MacMurray are in situations where COVID-19 can thrive. Being in close quarters with over 3000 people in it is highly unlikely that there has been not one reported case.

 

The economic climate right now seems to discourage workers from reporting symptoms they may have and so couple that with with business down, oil companies wanting to keep things moving, creates an insufferable situation for those that may be in the target group with families or other elder family members at home at risk compared with younger workers

 

WE NEED RANDOM COVID 19 TESTING to see what we are really dealing with out here in northern Alberta. There is very little personal protection items and spreading the virus.

 

Please help get the word out if you have the right connections to any media sources.

 

 

   Thursday, April 9, 2020 

Published 8:30 pm

 

Kids can colour away their days

City has created a Twitter social media page to submit your Picasso

Jamie Leggatt/Chilliwack City Hall image

 

The City is looking for the creative sides of its residents.


are many ways for us to come together while staying physically apart. This long weekend, you can help build community spirit and connection with the Twitter feed #ChilliwackTogether campaign.

The hashtag #ChilliwackTogether was created by community partners as a way for residents to share positive stories and thoughts with one another. One way for residents to participate is to create and share some artwork that encourages others.

Artwork could be a thank you, a picture of something you’re grateful for, or what physical distancing means to you. Post photos of your work with #ChilliwackTogether or email photos to engage@chilliwack.com to share your spirit! For anyone looking for inspiration, themed colouring pages are available for download at chilliwack.com/connect. Art from the community will be featured on the City’s social media accounts and website.

“While this is a difficult time for many, we have seen and heard about so many instances of community members stepping up to help one another,” said Mayor Popove. “Sharing more of these moments with each other builds community spirit and shows what a kind, caring place Chilliwack can be.”

 

 

   Thursday, April 9, 2020 

Published 8:30 pm

 

Chilliwack care homes free from coronavirus

Cascades Lodge has a gastrointestinal breakout

Staff/Google image

 

According to Fraser Health's website, there aren't any coronavirus outbreaks at any retirement facilities. in Chilliwack.


are no reports of coronavirus at any of the long-term care homes in Chilliwack, however there is a gastrointestinal outbreak as Cascade Lodge at 45586 McIntosh Drive, Chilliwack B.C.

 

For any health emergency, please call 9-1-1.
For non-emergency health information and advice in British Columbia, contact HealthLink BC at 8-1-1 or at www.healthlinkbc.ca. Help is available any time of the day or night, every day of the year.

 

Follow Fraser Health's care home notices here.

 

 

  Wednesday, April 8, 2020 

Published 3 pm

 

Coronavirus triage for homeless opens in Chilliwack

Multiple partners team up for first of its kind facility in the Lower Mainland with beds and testing at Evergreen Hall, others to follow

Staff/Voice photo

 

Workers were busy putting the final touches on the 24-bed triage which opens today at Evergreen Hall.


sounds of hammers could be heard from behind the white tarp stretched across the entrance of  Evergreen Hall in preparation of the opening today of a 24-bed shelter with a testing capacity for homeless people and those living in supportive housing showing mild symptoms of coronavirus. They will all be referred by Fraser Health's case by case and put through a screening process as the disease emerges in the community.

 

It's been a strong showing of solidarity from BC Housing, Division of Family Practice and the City of Chilliwack who have all been behind the effort which is the first of its kind in the Lower Mainland.

 

According to staff at Ruth and Naomi's, the facility will be taking it's first suspected COVID-19 patient tomorrow.

 

The beds are 2 meters apart and there will be an isolation section but no Intensive Care Unit. If people need to be on a ventilator they'll be taken to the nearby Chilliwack General Hospital. There will also be a space for nurses and a common area for people at the triage.

 

The shelter, located at 9291 Corbould Street, will go a long way to alleviating anxiety in the community about the possibility of the disease spreading. There are over 221 homeless people in Chilliwack.

 

It's not clear if there is a constituency plan in place should the triage get a gut punch and be overrun with cases.

 

A resident out walking his dog across the street told The Voice that he wasn't afraid of catching it from homeless people.

 

"I'm just glad they're doing something about it," he said with a hint of optimism.

 

 

  Wednesday, April 8, 2020 

Published 3 pm

 

Food for families

Local community groups distribute hampers around Chilliwack

Brianna Carson, CCC/Voice file photos

 

Chilliwack Community Services Volunteers will be dropping off food to families around Chilliwack.


community partners joined forces today to ensure that children will be fed during the COVID 19 pandemic. This initiative was developed by Chilliwack community partners, recognizing that food programs normally being delivered in schools through the Bowls of Hope Society, the Starfish Back Pack program of Chilliwack Community Services and the Rotary Clubs in Chilliwack, are affected by school closures.

 

The Bowls of Hope Program currently feeds 850 children a day and the Starfish Back Pack Program provides food to 159 families every weekend. The Rotary Club of Chilliwack provides their Breakfast and Literacy program at four elementary schools. The partners jointly stated, “During this critical time, it is essential that we ensure that children in our community are fed and that their basic needs are met. In a spirit of collaboration and cooperation, we are dedicated to making sure this happens.”
 

Starting Wednesday April 8, 2020, weekly food hampers will be prepared by the Chilliwack Salvation Army Food Bank with the support of volunteers and community partners including the Bowls of Hope Society, Starfish Backpack (Chilliwack Community Services), the United Way of the Lower Mainland, all Chilliwack Rotary Clubs and the Chilliwack Chamber of Commerce.

 

These hampers will be delivered to 23 school sites by volunteers and picked up by families with appropriate social distancing, organized by the Chilliwack school district. We also welcome community volunteers and donations for this initiative and contact information is included below.

 

In addition, there is a special call for food donations to support this program. In preparation for the food hampers, there are certain items that are always needed and we welcome food donations Tuesday, April 7, 2020 between 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. at the Salvation Army Church at 46420 Brooks Avenue, Chilliwack. The following food items are needed:

 

• 500 mg peanut butter

• Tins of ravioli, spaghetti and other canned pasta items

• Tins of ham, chicken and fish
 

If you are not able to drop off these items at the Brooks location on Tuesday, please drop of at the Salvation Army Share and Care Centre located at 45746 Yale Road, Chilliwack during their normal business hours.  

 

  Tuesday, April 7, 2020 

Published 9 am

 

Long-term care residence has COVID-19 outbreak

Fraser Health says Chartwell Cedarbrooke in Mission is one of 8 infected with the coronavirus

Staff/Google image

 


Health lists Chartwell Cedarbrooke Retirement Residence in Mission at 32331 7th Ave. as having a COVID-19 outbreak.

 

The Fraser Health website doesn't indicate how many residents have been exposed to the COVID-19 virus. The Voice reached out for comment but so far have not received a response.

 

So far 7 care home facilities throughout the Lower Mainland have had outbreaks and Fraser Health has instituted the following procedures at those residences (in most cases access has been denied):

 

• Staffing levels will be maintained to provide patient care.
• Visitors have been limited to only essential visitors.
• Staff and patient movement in the facility has been restricted.
• Cleaning and infection control measures have been enhanced.
• Patient, families and staff are being notified.
• Twice a day screening of all staff and patients.

 

If you have need information on a family resident call (604) 557-5154.

 

For the entire list of residential care homes affected by COVID-19 in the Lower Mainland and for more information, visit Fraser Health's website here.

 

Watch for updates as they become available.

 

 

  Tuesday, April 7, 2020 

Published 9 am

 

No charge for parking

Fraser Health suspends parking fee at hospitals for patients and staff

Fraser Health /File image

 


the extraordinary circumstances patients, staff and medical staff are in and to help reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission, Fraser Health is temporarily suspending pay parking at all health authority owned and operated sites until further notice.

Effective April 1, this applies to the general public, staff and medical staff.

Fraser Health pay parking machines require individuals to touch screens and buttons that may have been touched by someone previously.

 

Discontinuing the use of pay parking machines reduces the risk of potential spread of infection and also supports physical distancing measures that have been mandated by the Provincial Health Officer.

To ensure equitability for all staff and medical staff, whether they are working from home or at health authority sites, Fraser Health is also temporarily suspending payroll deductions for parking fees.

In addition, BCTransit ProPass payroll deductions for staff and medical staff are being temporarily suspended in communities where BC Transit has suspended paid transit.

 

 

  Tuesday, April 7, 2020 

Published 8 am

 

'Video collage'

A capella ensemble overcomes isolation by creating inspirational music together online

Paula DeWit, Conductor, CSO /YouTube image

 

Chilliwack Symphony Orchestra Belle Voici ensemble perform Lay a Garland on Youtube.


imposed restrictions of self isolation could have been ‘game over’ for renowned Fraser Valley singing ensemble Belle Voci, however, with a bit of innovation, ingenuity and using the latest in digital technology, the choir group have produced a remarkable video collaboration project that is bringing in appreciation and accolades from around the world.

 
"In times of adversity, it is important to keep making beautiful music and show our humanity by staying connected," said the choir's Music Director Paula DeWit, who was driven to find a way to overcome any obstacles and continue her lifelong passion for making music of the highest quality.

 

CSO Conductor Paula DeWit leads the orchestra at a performance.

 

The ‘A cappella’ ensemble’s gorgeous performance of 'Lay a Garland' (by Robert Lucas de Pearsall) is almost absolute perfection and remarkably was recorded by the individual members using their phones at home. Using the latest technology, the audio soundtracks were extracted from the film content, worked on in a professional recording production studio, digitally mastered and then re-inserted into the finished video collage with all the singers performing ‘virtually’.


"Lay a Garland is a sublime madrigal, filled with passionate, anguished harmonies , a real visceral source of comfort during this dark time," says DeWit. "During our confinement, as we ‘stay at home’, our eyes don’t offer escape nearly as well as our ears. It is music that saves us and music that consoles us. It is powerful to immerse yourself in the effortless beauty of this performance and through our headphones, our mind wanders to happier places where we find peace, strength and comfort."


With listeners in Holland, France , the USA and UK within the first few hours of the video being released, the worldwide relevance of this beautiful performance is there for all to experience.


No matter how unpredictable the future feels, Belle Voci remain committed to delivering high quality music for all to enjoy and are already starting their next project.

 
'Lay a Garland’ was written by the English composer Robert Lucas de Pearsall in 1840. The text is taken from the Beaumont and Fletcher play The Maids Tragedy, and is spoken by a heartbroken woman who has been parted from her betrothed.

 

Belle Voci is led by Music Director Paula DeWit and performs throughout the Fraser Valley. Its members hail from, Port Coquitlam, Maple Ridge, Langley, Abbotsford and Chilliwack. Celebrated a capella singers, Belle Voci, offer exciting selections of diverse Sacred Music, including renaissance polyphony, Greek Orthodox chant, traditional and jazzy interpretations of favourite pieces, and modern versions of melodies that have lasted throughout the ages.

 

 

Listen to the Lay a Garland video on YouTube.

 

Connect with the Chilliwack Symphony Orchestra on Facebook on Twitter or, visit chilliwacksymphony.com

 

 

  Monday, April 6, 2020 

Published 9 am

 

Pulling together

Surrey consortium care group in it for the long haul

John Lawson, Board Chair, SurreyCares Community Foundation /Handout photo


Surrey Community Relief Fund is focused on supporting non-profit organizations that are responding directly to the pandemic by offering supports to the most vulnerable populations in our community. 
 

The first $500,000 will be shared amongst the following organizations:​​


Surrey/NorthDelta Meals on Wheels which provides home delivery of freshly prepared meals, mostly supporting the elderly

Cloverdale Community Kitchen which provides meals for the homeless and recently launched a food delivery program for seniors in the Cloverdale area

Surrey Food Bank which provides food to families living in Surrey and North Delta

Fraser Regional Aboriginal Friendship Centre supporting All Nations Youth Safe House (ANYSH) in Surrey which provides food and shelter to aboriginal youth

"Supporting the charitable sector in Surrey is at the core of what we are here for. This is a difficult time for everyone, and we know that those who are already marginalized in our community will be disproportionately impacted. If you have the means, we urge you to help in this effort." says John Lawson, Chair of SurreyCares Community Foundation.
 

After we reach and distribute the initial $500,000, we will continue to fundraise. This effort will continue for as long as there is a need. Our goal is to support as many of the groups providing front-line help as possible. As more money comes in, we will distribute it to more organizations.

 

 

  Monday, April 6, 2020 

Published 9 am

the-valley-voice-news-chilliwack-bc

Volunteer medal effort continues

All veterans want is recognition of the people who gave it their all

Dave W. Palmer, CD, Sergeant Ret'd/File photo


, while I believe the ridiculous Carbon Tax is both unfair and unjust, it bothers me and thousands of my comrades that while asked repeatedly, they just don't seem to hear or listen to the requests of comrades and fellow veterans. This is in regard to the Canadian Military Volunteer Service Medal (CMVSM) that our politicians have been asked to make a reality for our nation's veterans and the whole 9-yards of avoidance have been thrown at this request, "the medal" to not hear our pleas or respectful requests. You want our votes and to get elected on one hand, but on the other hand, you won't even entertain this long-standing effort to honour, acknowledge and recognize tens of thousands of potential voters, your fellow Comrades. Why is this?

Once we, your fellow Veterans hear something substantial and concrete in regard to the CMVSM, then you may grab our attention and perhaps get us to believe that it is you we should be putting into power to serve your fellow Canadians and those Comrades who served before you, along side of you and served after you departed the Canadian Forces.

God Bless our Veterans and our Troops and their Families.

 

 

  Sunday, April 5, 2020 

Published 7 am

 

Federal/Provincial prisons restrict visitation, work releases due to virus

Telephone and video visits are options

Staff/File photo

 

 

 

  BC Federal Corrections Services have tested 9 inmates at various prisons. A total of nine prisoners have been sick enough to test; 3 tests at the Fraser Valley Institution for Women which have come back negative, 1 test at Mission Medium Institution that came back negative and 5 at the Pacific Regional Treatment Centre all of which were negative. There have been 12 positive tests with 20 pending at federal prisons across Canada.

The Correctional Service of Canada (CSC) is following public health guidelines set out by the CSC who have thorough procedures in place to deal with influenza and other respiratory illnesses, such as COVID-19. As well, unprecedented steps are being taken by CSC to address COVID-19

To protect staff and offenders the following rules are now in place:

• visits from the public and volunteers

• all temporary absences from institutions, unless medically necessary

• work releases for offenders

"We want inmates to stay in touch with family while visits are suspended. To help with this, we have waived deductions from inmate pay for use of the telephone system in our institutions."

Their family and friends of inmates can have access to video visitation or via telephone.

BC Correctional Institute have similar guidelines:

• For the safety of everyone within this facility, in-person personal visits will be suspended unless there are exceptional circumstances
• Confidential in-person meetings with official visitors (such as legal counsel) will be accommodated as much as possible without permitting direct personal contact
• All visitors are required to submit to the same safe hygiene measures and self screening protocols as staff, and will be refused entry if they do not comply
• Visitors will not be allowed access to the Centre if they are experiencing or exhibiting any signs of illness

 

 

  Tuesday, April 1, 2020 

Published 7 am

 

Home sales continue to soar

Lower mortgage interest rates provide incentive

Steve Lerigny, CADREB/File photo

 

sales in Chilliwack and area were poised for a banner month in March, but don’t expect to see any drastic drops in price when self-isolation is over.

Prior to the new safety regulations associated with the COVID-19 virus, home sale activity was brisk. Last month posted 267 completed sales, with some listings and sales still catching up and coming in slowly at the start of April.

While home viewings are still taking place for those who need to buy or sell, The Chilliwack and District Real Estate Board (CADREB) reminds buyers and sellers that personal health and safety is of utmost priority during these times.

“Buyers and sellers need to let their REALTOR® know if they are sick or have been in contact with someone who is ill if they are to view a home or have their home viewed,” explained Kim Parley, CADREB President. “Housing is a necessity, so the market will rebound and pent up demand combined with currently low mortgage rates should create a busy market when social distancing rules are changed but above all at this time, be safe, be healthy and make wise choices”.

Parley noted that real estate agents have been instructed to wear gloves and sanitize any touch points when they leave, such as door handles and light switches. The Board has also strongly recommended that Open Houses not occur at this time. Open Houses have been removed from being posted on realtor.ca to help discourage these.

“While REALTORS® post photos of their listings, many are adding or enhancing virtual tours on their listings during this time of self-isolation,” he added. “It’s a great way to view a property from the safety of your home, learn all the specifications and be poised to view it either now with the safety regulations in place, or at a later date”.

Listings are expected to drop as many sellers whose listing expires will opt to wait until the social distancing rules are changed. However, when the market starts to rebound, pent up demand will mean that prices are not likely to drop much, particularly with such attractive mortgage rates currently being offered.

Of the 267 home sales that occurred mainly in the first half of March, the most sold (29) were in the $450,000 - $499,999 range, followed by 27 sales in the $400,000 - $449,999 range, indicating strong demand in the townhome and condo sector. There were 14 sales over the $1 million mark, including one over $2 million.

For now, it’s a great time to leisurely peruse the over 900 listings in the Chilliwack and area housing market via www.realtor.ca , take a virtual tour from the safety of your home, arrange for a viewing with safety precautions in place, or contact by phone or social media any of the 328 experienced REALTORS® of CADREB to discuss the market and your housing needs.

 

 

  Tuesday, April 1, 2020 

Published 7 am

 

It's no April Fool's Day joke, Red Light Cameras are flashing now

Luckakuk and Vedder intersections targeted in Chilliwack

BC Gov't/Handout images

 

Vedder Road and Luckakuck cameras will be watching. Tickets include running yellows.

 

BC government announced Tuesday morning that cameras are now clicking at busy, high-risk intersections around BC, equipped to ticket red light runners and the fastest vehicles (No speed camera's in Chilliwack.)

Mike Farnworth, Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General, has confirmed that automated speed enforcement equipment is now in place at all 35 planned Intersection Safety Camera (ISC) program sites and operating at 34 of them, on a 24/7 basis. Prominent warning signs are in place to warn and deter speeding drivers.

Government is postponing activation of the new speed enforcement equipment at one location – Island Highway at Aulds Road in Nanaimo – until mid-September 2020. This grace period is to allow drivers time to adjust to a recent reduction of the speed limit on the highway there, to 70 km/h from 80 km/h. This site remains activated for red-light enforcement.

Since B.C. activated its first five automated speed enforcement cameras at the end of July 2019, the program has issued more than 20,000 speeding tickets. The fastest ticketed vehicle clocked 174 km/h at a location where the posted speed limit is 80 km/h.

 

 

  Tuesday, April 1, 2020 

Published 6 pm

 

Get your groove on

Hunker in the bunker with Edmonton artists Kerr and Vriend and their popular new song

Mavis Harris/Facebook image

 

Martin Kerr and Ann Vriend perform their hilarious song about living through a pandemic.

 

new song for these trying times!  Two Edmonton artists teamed-up to write a song called "Isolation Groove" that they say is intended to make listeners laugh, sing, and dance their way through these crazy times. Written by Martin Kerr and Ann Vriend - Isolation

Groove is their first song about love in the middle of a pandemic.

 

"You're stuck at home with the people you love, but also trying not to touch each other. A bit of a mixed message," says Kerr.

 

They were worried that some would think they're making light of a serious situation, but with all of their gigs cancelled, including a European tour for Vriend, they wanted to do something to help cheer them up. "It's really for our own sanity that we need to laugh and sing and dance," said Kerr. And so far, people are getting into the isolation groove with them. The video has been shared thousands of times already, and they've had messages from fans around the world. Connect on Facebook.

 

 

  Tuesday, April 1, 2020 

Published 6 pm

 

School's out completely

Chilliwack School Board says it's business as usual for staff

Donna Vogel,SCB/Handout photo

 

Chilliwack School Board Trustees will still be working.

 

  March 17, 2020, due to the prevent the spread of COVID-19, the Provincial Health Officer, recommended to immediately suspend in-classroom learning in BC until further notice.

 

According to a March 27 government release, students will receive a final mark and will automatically move to the next grade will do so in the fall.

 

For grades 10 and 11 students, graduation assessments that were scheduled for April will be postponed. Every student eligible to graduate from Grade 12 this year will graduate providing  they complete the Grade 10 numeric assessment.

 

According to School Distinct 33, regular supports to students ad families will still available.

 

One way to keep the kids busy is by learning at home is with an incentive called "Keep Learning BC" at the Open School. they'll find a list of free, everyday educational activities for every age, designed to support the B.C. curriculum. For more information, visit www.gov.bc.ca/SafeSchools.

 

 

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Read Georgia Nicols' weekly here. She writes like she knows you!

 

This Week

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All Signs:

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See yours here

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June 1, 2020

Today is the 151st day

There are 214 days left in 2020


1938 Baseball helmets were worn for the first time

1953 Raymond Burr made his network-TV acting debut. It was in "The Mask of Medusa" on ABC-TV's "Twilight Theater."

1954 In the Peanuts comic strip, Linus' security blanket made its debut.

1961 Radio listeners in New York, California, and Illinois were introduced to FM multiplex stereo broadcasting.

1974 The Heimlich maneuver for rescuing choking victims is published in the journal Emergency Medicine.

1971 The two -room shack in Tupelo, Mississippi, where Elvis Presley was born on January 8, 1935 was opened to the public as a tourist attraction.

1974 Alanis Morissette, Can -Am, singer was born. Her 1996 Jagged Little Pill album sold more then 30 million copies, making it the best ever selling record by a female.

1980 Cable News Network (CNN) begins broadcasting.

2008 The Phoenix Mars Lander became the first NASA spacecraft to scoop Martian soil.

2009 General Motors files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. It is the fourth largest US bankruptcy in history.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The best in Chilliwack!

 

Chilliwack Window and Door

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Honest and reliable!

 

Health Partners Society

 

 

 

 

Drop in and have a coffee and gab with the gang at this fun coffee get together. Visit their website for dates and times.

 

My IT guy. Experience Computers is the best.  Straight up. You don't need anyone else. No BS, Best prices in Chilliwack.

Marc at Midnite Auto is the best and where The Voice vehicles get their wheels looked after. The guy simply goes above and beyond. He's got the largest mustang parts collection and front ends in BC. His customers  come from all parts of the Lower Mainland and beyond.

If you're looking for the best record players in the world and a huge record collection, you'll find them at Classic Sound on Wellington Ave.

The Tireland guys on Yale Rd. are great and very helpful. Love these guys. Ever need air? Drive in, they'll check your tire pressure and all you have to say is "thanks"

The unsung heroes in the community are the St John's volunteers. We sure need 'em and they're there.

Dave's a great guy and his staff are top notch. The oil changes are perfect. They'll even put the oil in for you if you bring it and do your windows too!

Where would we be with them. Not only do they help needy people in the community, but they run out to big fires and feed the fire department. Food Banks are a cheap form of public insurance in case of disaster.

www.chilliwackvchurch.ca

No perfect People

Real friendly pastor, small but awesome congregation, super venue and lots of parking on College St.

A great bunch and much appreciated.

Awesome film company who have a great summer program for kids as well. Super people. Love these guys.

The Voice is hosted by the awesome Electric Toad. Top service, best techs, rates, lightning fast servers. No down time.

 

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