Renee Merrifield

Renee Merrifield

Kelowna-Mission MLA Merrifield looks back on 2021

A column from the BC Liberal caucus

  • Jan. 3, 2022 10:33 a.m.

By Renee Merrifield

Kelowna-Mission

MLA

Without a doubt, this past year has been incredibly challenging.

Between the continuing pandemic, overdose deaths at an all-time high, economic hardships, and destructive climate-related disasters, no corner of this province has been untouched.

However, amidst all these challenges, we’ve seen people step up to face them head on. I want to say a sincere thank you to all those who have been there to support friends, neighbours, and even complete strangers this year.

From the doctors and nurses, still working incredibly hard in our health care system, to the first responders who did their best during the heat dome and continue to be on the frontlines of record overdoses, to firefighters who helped contain wildfires this summer and emergency crews still at work on flood recovery in places like Abbotsford and Merritt.

And anyone else who has so much as checked in on a loved one or donated to help those impacted by the events of this year – thank you for your heartfelt contributions.

For me, this year has been one of learning, of listening, and working to hold government accountable to its promises and responsibilities to British Columbians. It’s been my first full year as an MLA, and it has already been such an incredible privilege to represent the people of Kelowna.

I am so thankful for the opportunity to further invest in this community I call home, and work to ensure its needs are being met by our provincial government.

Unfortunately, this year we’ve seen too many examples of the NDP failing to look out for the people of B.C. This government has been slow to respond to natural disasters, failing to adequately communicate with those on the ground and delaying calling states of emergency.

Not to mention their lack of action to address the opioid crisis or other issues impacting British Columbians, like affordability.

Parents of children with autism were also shocked to find out about the NDP’s plan to claw back individualized funding, a decision made without consulting families or advocates.

The simple truth is that British Columbians deserve better from their government – especially after the year we’ve had.

As we enter the last few weeks of the year, I look forward to 2022. Another year of working to hold government accountable and meet the needs of British Columbians.

I know it will be a year of rebuilding, of coming together to make our province stronger than ever before.

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Year in Review