Greens restored British Columbian values to provincial politics

British Columbia’s most valuable asset is its people – our resilience, entrepreneurial spirit, creative drive and  shared love of the mountains, valleys, rivers and oceans that make B.C. one of the world’s most beautiful and biodiverse places.

This fundamental principle has guided the work of the three Green Party of British Columbia MLAs over the past year as they worked not just for their constituencies but also for every British Columbian. Through the minority government framework, we’ve shown that collaboration and a diversity of perspectives lead to new ideas and better decision-making.

By removing partisan bias and injecting evidence-based policy framing into every discussion, the Green MLAs are credited with bringing the parties together on shared B.C. values and ending destabilizing swings that inevitably result when consecutive majority governments reflect the polarizing environment of a two-party system.

The BC Greens have restored British Columbian values to provincial politics. We believe that every British Columbian values access to clean water and air, and we all want to live in an equitable society that upholds human rights and where a hard day’s work is rewarded with fair pay and a safe place to call home.

By better reflecting the diversity that makes up all corners of B.C., we’ve shown the strength of a minority government is in the diversity of perspectives that are allowed to be heard.

BC Greens have united the three parties three times in historical, unanimous passing of their opposition party private member’s bills:

Empowering companies with new legal incorporation designation

The Business Corporations Act provides companies with the ability to pursue a new legal incorporation designation if they uphold a triple bottom line approach that prioritizes environmental and social values in addition to their financial goals. This unanimously passed legislation was the first private member’s bill from an opposition party, and the Greens also positioned the province as a leader nationally by being the first in the country to offer a benefit company option.

Protecting tenants’ rights and supporting victims

Renters who are victims of violence at their home can now break their fixed-term lease and seek safety after the BC Greens’ private member’s bill amending the Residential Tenancy Act garnered broad tri-party support from the NDP and Liberals.

Honouring a past atrocity and B.C. ’s Ukrainian community

The Ukrainian Famine and Genocide (Holodomor) Memorial Day bill officially recognizes the fourth Saturday of every November as a day of remembrance for those who died during Holodomor from 1932 to 1933.

Now, more than ever, political leaders must work together to address the challenges before us and step boldly into the future. Climate change took centre stage this federal election cycle, but campaign trail promises to address climate change are meaningless without concrete policy action to bring those promises to fruition.

This fall, CleanBC’s ambitious goals were embedded into the legal fabric of B.C. with the passing of the Climate Change Accountability Amendment Act, which shortens emissions targets and increases transparency. As a climate scientist, I know that transparent, accurate, timely and publicly accessible data is crucial to achieving our climate commitments. “Trust us” is not good climate policy.

Perhaps the most historic legislation for British Columbia this year was the passing of the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act (Bill 41). Social justice and respect of diversity are more than core principles for the BC Greens; they are values that every British Columbian can embrace. Every MLA stood united in support of those core values this fall session, making a significant milestone on our path to reconciliation. The bill’s passage was a foundational piece of the Confidence and Supply Agreement that enables us to support this NDP minority government.

BC Green values are British Columbian values: health and wellness, fairness and justice, economic prosperity and ecological sustainability. The past year has seen more stability, innovation and integrity brought to politics in British Columbia. The BC Green Party commits to continuing to work every day to to realize those ideals and bring a better quality of life to all.

Oak Bay-Gordon Head MLA Andrew Weaver is the leader of the BC Green Party.