News British Columbia

BC Liberals plead for patience with jobs plan 0

Jeremy Nuttall

By Jeremy Nuttall, 24 hours Vancouver

BC Premier Christy Clark. (24 HOURS FILE PHOTO)

BC Premier Christy Clark. (24 HOURS FILE PHOTO)

Premier Christy Clark is standing by her jobs plan in the face of criticism following more job losses in the province.

The B.C. unemployment rate rose .2% from October to November, and the province has lost 15,500 jobs since November 2012, according to StatsCan.

BC NDP finance critic Mike Farnworth said a lack of substance in the plan is to blame.

“The jobs plan by any definition has been one big bust,” Farnworth said. “Their efforts have been more about hype than anything else and the results are in the appalling numbers that we’ve seen.”

But the government has spent almost $15 million advertising the plan.

“We have a plan, we are sticking with it,” she told reporters in Vancouver Tuesday. “In a time of really sluggish economic growth around the world, where people, jurisdictions are losing jobs, sinking, floundering around trying to figure out what to do, the places that have a plan are the ones that are going to succeed.”

Farnworth questioned the jobs losses up against the backdrop of the province hosting more than 70,000 temporary foreign workers.

Provincial jobs minister Shirley Bond echoed the premier’s statements.

“There are encouraging signs that the province is on track for continued economic growth,” Bond said in an email. “There were gains in the private sector of 3,800 jobs and this is reflected in the Canadian Federation of Independent Business’s latest Business Barometer measure, which shows B.C.’s small business community the most upbeat in the country after Newfoundland and Labrador.”

Bond said the province has predicted more than one million job openings by 2020, pointing to the province’s natural gas plans.

Dennis Milne, a multi-branch manager at temporary labour agency Labour Ready in Vancouver said his business has gone up 22%.

“We definitely have more workers than we do assignments,” Milne said. “I can’t find enough work for everybody.”



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