NDP MLAs Get Liberal Promise Of Action On One Of Their Surrey Accord Proposals


SURREY – TheLiberal governmentis promisingaction onone of thepoints in thefive-point planthe NewDemocrats haveput forward tohelp build asafer, healthierSurrey.Surrey MayorDianne Wattsand AttorneyGeneral SuzanneAnton have agreed to set up a steeringcommittee looking at proposed communitycourts.“While it is too early to say whethershovels will hit the ground, at least thereis an intention to look at one of the fivepoints,” said Surrey-Newton MLA HarryBains.“Now we would like to see similar commitmentson the rest of the NewDemocrats’ Surrey Accord.”Local community courts are just one ofthe five points proposed by Bains,Surrey-Green Timbers MLA SueHammell and Surrey-Whalley MLABruce Ralston in the Surrey Accord. Theplan also calls for regulation of recoveryhomes, commitment to a mental healthstrategy similar to Vancouver’s, and thecreation of more accessible social housing.At a recent community consultationhosted by Hammell, Ralston and Bains,the public voiced concern at the recentrise in crime, violence and social problemsin Surrey and demanded action.“We hope this is the start of all three levelsof government signing onto pillars ofthe Surrey Accord. That would be thebeginning of a serious, coordinatedeffort towards a better future for Surrey,”said Hammell.“It’s encouraging to see Mayor Watts andMinister Anton following one of our recommendations,”said Ralston. “We’ll bewatching and speaking with the so-calledadvisory committee to ensure they followthrough.“For too long, governments have madeempty promises but failed to address thechallenges facing our city. We need significant,long-term change, and thatchange must start today.”