Our third Policy Solutions Day took place in Victoria on October 23rd. Every year, it's Fostering Change's biggest advocacy event. We brought 65 young people from across Southern BC to meet with government officials. Altogether, we had 27 meetings with the Premier, Ministers, MLAs, Senior Government Staff and Ministerial Assistants, and the Representative for Children and Youth.
The day is full, starting at 7:30 where we board a school bus to the ferry terminal. At the ferry, groups broke off to get trained by their prepared group leads (shout out to Ashley, Shae, Soraya, Anita, Braydon, Chris, Liz, Dyllon, and Ruby). We were joined by national media (CTV W5) and boarded the Community Action Bus together.
We submitted a Policy Memo, available here. Our Policy Memo had two components:
- Universal and comprehensive AYAs so that all youth age out with supports, not just a few
- #AgingIntoHomes: a guaranteed, dependable, sufficient resource for youth to afford furniture for their first apartment.
We were thrilled to see Premier Horgan briefed by MCFD Ministerial Assistants and ADMs in charge of the file, and to learn that MCFD staff had been asked to brief various Ministers after last year's event. John Horgan told us that something new is on the table: to raise care to 25, so that all youth can get support and stay in their placements, as is the case in Alberta.
The day wrapped up with great coverage on CTV and Black Press outlets. Check out an article with a video of our press conference here.
ABOVE: Fostering Change Community Organizers (FCCOs) meeting with Minister Shane Simpson
ABOVE: FCCOs learning from our Co-Organizer Susan Russell
ABOVE: FCCOs coming off the bus, with CTV W5 cameras in the background.
ABOVE: Our 'Family Photo' which includes printed versions of several Ministers, who are part of our family and were wrapped up in Question Period.
ABOVE: FCCOs Chanting 'Thrive Not Survive!'
ABOVE: As we came down the steps, we saw an unexpected media scrum.
ABOVE: Our spokespeople point-of-view with microphones and several journalists.
ABOVE: Our press conference with dozens of youth and the cardboard Minister cut-outs.
ABOVE: FCCO Adil Walker-Chagani addressing the media.
FCCOs meeting with Premier John Horgan as he flips through our Opportunities in Transition report.
Who we met with:
- John Horgan (Premier)
- George Heyman (Minister of Environment and Climate Change)
- David Eby (Attorney General and Minister responsible for Liquor, Gaming and ICBC)
- Rob Fleming (Minister of Education)
- Katrine Conroy (Minister of Children & Family Development
- Judy Darcy (Minister of Mental Health and Addiction)
- Melanie Mark (Minister of Advanced Education, Skills and Training)
- Shane Simpson (Minister of Social Dev. and Poverty Reduction)
- Katrina Chen (Minister of State for Child Care)
- Mike Farnworth (Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General)
- Harry Bains (Minister of Labour)
- Claire Trevana is the Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure
- Doug Donaldson (Minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations, and Rural Development)
- Lisa Beare (Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture)
- George Chow (Minister of State for Trade)
- Ministerial Assistants from the Ministry of Finance,
- Gary Begg (Government Whip)
- Daryl Plecas (House Speaker)
- Sonia Fursteneau (Green MLA and Select Standing Committee of Children and Youth member)
- Nicolas Simons
- Bob D’Eith
- Anne Kang
- Sheila Malcomson
- Janet Routledge
- Jennifer Rice
- Raj Chouhan
- Doug Routley
Fourteen Liberal MLAs in two meetings:
- Simon Gibson
- Coralee Oakes
- Jane Thornthwaite
- Ralph Sultan
- Ian Paton
- Shirley Bond
- Laurie Throness
- Donna Barnett
- Jackie Tegart
- Michelle Stilwell
- John Rustad
- Linda Reid
- Rich Coleman
- Steve Thomson
- Jennifer Charlesworth (Representative for Children and Youth)
- And Blair Mitchell, Director of Advocacy)
- And Catherine Van Mossell (Researcher)
- Alison Bond (Deputy Minister of Ministry of Children and Family Development)
- Also in the meeting was each Assistant Deputy Minister
- Jay Chalke (BC Ombudsperson)
- Staff from the Performance Audit Team at BC Auditor General Carol Belringer's office)
- Connie Epp, who coordinates the MCFD Youth Advisory Council
- Lorie Hrycuik (Executive in the Public Health Division of the Ministry of Health)