April 13, 2005 15:31 ET

NDP: Fully-Costed Plan Makes the Right Choices for Average Families

JAMES' PLATFORM FEATURES REDUCED HEALTHCARE WAITLISTS, LONGTERM CARE BEDS, SMALLER CLASS SIZES, BALANCED BUDGET Attention: Assignment Editor, News Editor VICTORIA/BC--(CCNMatthews - April 13, 2005) - Reduced healthcare waitlists, additional longterm care beds, smaller class sizes and a balanced budget are the central features in the New Democrat election platform released today by NDP Leader Carole James.

James said the fully costed platform will provide a budget surplus, restore vital public services, and ensure continued economic growth.

"My plan reflects the priorities that I've heard from average families across BC," said James. "After four years of broken promises, failed privatization schemes, and reduced patient care under Gordon Campbell, British Columbians want a balanced, sensible alternative they can trust. That's what my plan is all about."

The New Democrat platform proposes key initiatives in priority areas. In addition to reduced health wait lists and smaller class sizes, those promises include: opening 1000 long-term care beds this year, with an additional 5000 new beds by 2009, improved child care, a post-secondary tuition freeze, supports for rural communities, and new green initiatives. The platform also includes a commitment to ban corporate and union donations to political parties.

Together with the platform, James released a full costing of her program. She said that each pledge will be achieved while maintaining a $180 million budget surplus, continued debt reduction and a budget "forecast allowance" of $400 million.

"This platform is practical and achievable," said James. "And by focusing first on the needs of average families and communities who have been left out by Gordon Campbell, it helps restore balance and trust to BC.

"Over the last four years, British Columbians have learned not to trust Gordon Campbell," said James. "He's broken too many promises and his cuts to children, seniors and the most vulnerable are mean-spirited.

"In BC, everyone matters. But Gordon Campbell is making the wrong choices and leaving too many people behind. My platform sets a new direction, providing strong public services, fiscal balance, and new opportunities for all British Columbians."


Contact Information

  • Marcella Munro, Communications Officer, BC New Democrats
    Primary Phone: 606-675-2088
    Secondary Phone: 604-313-0717
    E-mail: marcellam@bcndp.ca