Tag Archives: Ken Sim

Cortes Island Opts in to BC Short Term Rental Act; Quadra Considering

Effective May 1, 2024, all BC communities with a population over 10,000 have to limit short term rentals to the host’s principle residence plus one secondary suite or accessory dwelling unit. Campbell River, Comox, Courtenay and Powell River are all on the list of  64 communities where this applies. Cortes Island is too small to be on that list, but has chosen to opt in, and Quadra Island is considering the idea. 

Continue reading Cortes Island Opts in to BC Short Term Rental Act; Quadra Considering

Inside Vancouver’s Decision to Scrap Its Living Wage Commitment

Editor’s note: in a memo to the city council one year after the Living Wage program was introduced, City Manager (now Cortes Island resident) Sadhu Johnston reported, “During 2017, the City of Vancouver and Vancouver Park Board signed or renegotiated 17 contracts that meet the Living Wage program criteria with vendors to ensure their staff and subcontractors are paid the living wage. Since the introduction of the policy, eight contracted service employees received a living wage who would not otherwise have been paid one. These employees are part of the contracted graffiti removal team and the contractor has reported reductions in absenteeism, turnover and recruitment costs as well as increased morale and productivity.”

By  Zak Vescera, The Tyee, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Internal emails suggest City of Vancouver staff felt “significant anger and disillusionment” after city council voted to scrap the municipality’s living wage policy this year.

That’s how former chief equity officer Aftab Erfan described the reaction from staff after the city announced in March it would no longer guarantee a living wage, effectively cutting the guaranteed minimum pay for security guards, food vendors, janitors and other low-wage workers. Erfan left the job four months later.

Continue reading Inside Vancouver’s Decision to Scrap Its Living Wage Commitment

Unions Criticize Vancouver’s Continuing Tent Sweeps

By  Zak Vescera, The Tyee, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Vancouver’s continuing efforts to remove tents from the Downtown Eastside has drawn criticism from some unions and many of the  municipality’s own workers.   

Unions representing  hospital staff, shelter workers and even employees who began clearing  the tents on East Hastings Street on April 5 have condemned the approach  of city and police, saying it left displaced residents in an even more  desperate situation. 

Continue reading Unions Criticize Vancouver’s Continuing Tent Sweeps

Vancouver’s Decision to Abandon Living Wage Program Creates Shockwaves

By  Zak Vescera, The Tyee, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

In 2017, the City of Vancouver committed to ensuring its employees — and workers for city contractors — were paid enough to live there. 

At the time, Vancouver was  the biggest employer in the country to offer a living wage based on the  cost of rent, food and other necessities. 

“It was the largest living wage  municipality, and it did a tremendous job over the years in encouraging  other businesses to sign on,” said Anastasia French, the director of Living Wage for Families BC.  Then-mayor Gregor Robertson told media it was a way to guarantee  workers “a basic level of opportunity” in an expensive place to live and  work. 

Continue reading Vancouver’s Decision to Abandon Living Wage Program Creates Shockwaves