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"They're funding three tires. You can't go anywhere with three tires."

Fort St. John mayor uses analogy to describe province's funding shortfall
health-adrian dix
Provincial health minister Adrian Dix speaks to delegates at the 2022 Union of B.C. Municipalities convention in Whistler

Fort St. John's mayor feels the province isn't seeing the big picture when it comes to not only healthcare but its other areas of responsibility.

Lori Ackerman, attending the Union of B.C. Municipalities convention in Whistler this week, said the province needs to acknowledge the huge impact its decisions are having on communities.

While not making any new announcements or commitments during an address to delegates Tuesday, health minister Adrian Dix said his government has added 38,000 jobs to the healthcare field since he began.

“The minister spoke about how great things are and how they're being funded. I'm hearing, yes, these things have been funded but the positions are not filled,” said Ackerman Wednesday morning.

The analogy the mayor uses is a vehicle that runs well but needs to have all four tires replaced.

“And, they're funding three tires. You can't go anywhere with three tires.”

Ackerman believes Victoria has to think on a broader scope.

“It's not just the Ministry of Health. It's the Ministry of Advanced Education to responsibly increase the number of seats in our post-secondary institutions to make sure that we have every member of the healthcare team trained and supported.”

“It's about making sure we've got mental health and addictions active and having significant programs out there that are robust and cover the complete continuum of addictions support and rehab,” added Ackerman.

“We need to make sure children and family development are supported as well, so we don't have families and children falling through the cracks, that we don't have children and families that are undiagnosed and are struggling in our communities. We need to have 24/365 daycare.”

Ackerman is hoping there will still be a chance this week to get that message, one of accountability, back to the provincial government before the week is out.

The convention concludes on Friday.

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