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#526190 City of Victoria | 2020 by-election

Posted by Stephen Andrew on 10 February 2020 - 09:23 AM

Well, I guess it’s time that I wade into this discussion.

I want to be totally transparent where I’m at, hence no official or unofficial announcement at this time.

I honestly thought I would not run when I was previously responded to questions and /or requests to jump in. Like many thoughts expressed here, I have been dealing with that conflict in my mind.

My last run encouraged my to think about it again once I dealt with the emotion and disappointment of 9th place finish.

Then came information about some questionable election financing I will leave that there for others to comment or investigate, but the information I received troubles me greatly.

I will have more to say in the next two days, meetings and a very tough conversation with my husband still to be had.

I’m leaning to “Yes”, but, as I’m sure you can appreciate, these decisions are not made in isolation.

Thank you to all the nice comments. Thanks for the constructive criticism. And yes, I “need to get my butt in gear”,

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#379334 Victoria homelessness and street-related issues

Posted by LJ on 20 April 2017 - 07:58 PM

I was at Walmart today, just as I was getting out of the car a guy in his late 20's comes up to me and starts in with a story about how he lost his job and needs some cash to put gas in his car. As I'm semi listening to him I see the sign at Walmart saying "now hiring all positions, full time, part time"


I point him toward the sign and he says "I'm not working at Walmart"


I denied his request for aid.

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#599362 City of Victoria | 2018-2022 | Mayor and council general discussion

Posted by Stephen Andrew on 10 April 2021 - 07:36 AM

Councillor Andrew's popularity must really be triggering the Together Victoria kids. I see their assorted trolls are going after him on twitter, even that BCGEU TV puppetmaster is joining in the bullying.

Stephen, if you're reading, stay strong and brave, you've clearly got Potts and company worried.

Thank you for your support. I haven’t seen the comments.

What I will say about the general attacks on positions is they are overreaching and ascribed to motivations that I do not hold.

I try to have a respectful dialogue at the council table, I prefer to work out conflicts behind closed doors and do the work I was elected to carry out.

When I say or do something that someone doesn’t agree with, they are entitled to let me know. Whatever their position,
I listen. I also reflect on their position. That’s our job. I take it very seriously and everyday I think about the enormous trust given to me.

When I can, I offer pragmatic suggestions to either policy or procedures.

However, this week I put my foot down about the mendacity presented in council about those who support public safety. It has to stop.

I did not “win by-elections” by “poor bashing”. I believe I won through pragmatic policy and listening to the needs of our community.

At every opportunity I advocate for raising literacy (key indicator of poverty, poor health and other detrimental issues), advocate for more mental health and addiction support, continue to search for solutions to stable housing, and the list goes on. However, I do not do any of this work and then virtue signal. I do it because that’s part of my job. Those councillors that know of my intentions understand where I come from. Those who are truly ignorant - in the true sense of the word - create tropes in a vacuum and then try to weaponize it.

I believe the majority of our community want to be heard, respected and not gaslit when it comes to issues that so readily harm safety for ALL.

They fail to educate themselves to what’s actually taking place - even the horrific dangers that exist in bad policy of tent encampments.

Real facts:

The caseload for those working in the field of sexual exploitation of youth, is very high. We are talking about children here, some as young as 11 - maybe younger? That’s disgusting and we as a community - all over the capital region - should be ashamed we allow this to continue.

We are also talking about unhoused women who are repeatedly raped several times day. One woman so out of touch and living with cognitive developmental challenges, she can’t even give a statement to police so crown can lay charges. NO, housing first strategies will not work here, we need to support and protect these women.

And there is the man who pimps out women for $20 a time to buy drugs.

THIS is what is on my mind. THIS is the reality I face and want to change.

THIS is what we need to talk about.

Behind the scenes I’m trying to get something in place to address this. We have known about this for years. Thank heaven for former Councillor Helen Hughes who years ago championed these issues and advocated to me to raise awareness.

here we are more than 20 years later and we still haven’t resourced this dirty little secret to the level we can immediately eradicate this crime from our community. These are our children for God’s sake.

It’s time to step up and be counted. Every one of us. Do you want to continue with bad policy or what?

Apologies for the length, but I am tired of others trying to say what’s in my heart.
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#636336 City of Victoria | 2018-2022 | Mayor and council general discussion

Posted by Stephen James on 03 February 2022 - 08:31 AM

I'm a fan of reconciliation but M Helps either doesn't understand it or doesn't care about it. Reconciliation isn't, by definition, done to people. It's an exercise of coming together through understanding. Reparations follow that understanding, they don't lead, and this is a nation to nation, province to nation issue, not a tiny city issue.


What M Helps has done is consistent. Collaboration, consensus-building, are blind-spots for her; she has no tools, as anyone who has participated in a meeting with her on any topic of import has witnessed. But collaboration and consensus-building are the very hard work necessary for change.


This idea was hatched through a corrupt, secret, process with no accountability to the community. (The antonym for good governance is corruption.) The idea has been promoted with an even more corrupt survey system, and even that support is obviously questionable.


In the absence of any mature tools to make positive change happen, M Helps has instead forced it through with the help of a slate that's on life-support. Even more unconscionable, she presumably does this because she knows better than the 60% of people who answered the "survey."


What she's done is to set reconciliation back for a considerable portion of the population. This is very sad. Her lack of understanding of the difference between her own self-interest (her strongly held beliefs), and a more enlightened self-interest, "what's good for you is good for me" means she's responsible for people who will turn their backs for a long time. I'm less interested in discussing reconciliation and this makes me angry.


I'm embarrassed by her, again.

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#526069 The Victoria crime thread

Posted by Sparky on 09 February 2020 - 08:13 AM

I think it could be fair to say that crime in the Greater Victoria area is increasing (or at least it appears to be)

I think it could be fair to say that the increase in crime can be linked to the increase in the drug trade.

The increase in the drug trade can be linked to the increase in the number of drug users.

The increase in drug users can be linked to the increase in transient and home grown persons who also have no visible means of support. (read income from gainful employment)

The increase of persons with no visible means of support can be linked to the decrease in law enforcement (there are other jurisdictions in this country that uphold the law which as a result are not conducive to a less than exemplary lifestyle, so these persons gravitate to an area that overlooks these indescretions)..... as well as the increase in social services and attitudes that enable the lifestyle of the drug users.

The decrease in law enforcement and the increase of social services can be linked to the increase of progressive left leaning idealists (read identity socialists) that champion the freedoms and rights of persons with no visible means of support.

Again...a socialist is someone who has nothing and wants to share it with everyone, and a law without a penalty is only a suggestion.

Until there is a political shift to uphold the foundation of law and order and penalize those who disregard our laws and bylaws (no matter how insignificant they might seem) ....crime will increase. (too simple right?)

We cannot continue with the adage that "people don't usually steal without a reason" in order to justify the decrease in law enforcement...because for the most part the increase in crime is because the reason is that the people that steal do not have a visible means of support.... and it takes cash in order to buy drugs. (a never ending loop)

Economics 101. One's income must be equal to or greater than one's expenses.

Free soup and socks won't change that, and the socialist ideal that "community" based policing is more effective than "enforcement" based policing is in my opinion...hogwash.
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#445960 Victoria Pride parades and local LGBTQ+ news, issues

Posted by sdwright.vic on 08 July 2018 - 09:12 PM

My response to police not being allowed at Pride.

So, with the ongoing debate about police officers at Pride throughout North America, I have decided it’s time for me to come out of the closet. The closet of being a victim of trauma. Which traumas doesn't matter, this is not a competition.

Yes, I said traumas. So yes, there is more than one, and some were even self inflicted traumas to attempt to “recover” from previous traumas.

Now, I am sure you are going to say “gee, white boy with privilege trauma, someone must be devastated about not getting into Harvard”. I am going to tell you, no I know what “real" trauma is and leave it at that.

A note about the white privilege that I may be accused of having before we go on. While I do not deny advantages may exist, I will never agree that my trauma is lesser than anyone else. Nor, does that mean that I am saying it was more.

Why? I am a 47 year old man that grew up in the mid-western bible belt of the US. I gave been called a faggot, a queer and every other homophobic word in the book. I used to sit and listen to family and friends talk about those faggot-queers “deserving what they got" when bashing stories were on the news or whatever talk show. I had to face all the torment a young child may face today for being gay. But, without the chance of a sympathetic teacher or ally. Back then, we had to hide, even from each other. Especially if you were a child with other trauma.

So I had to live in fear of making some movement or gesture that might give me away. I had to spend hours in the bathroom practicing my voice in the mirror so their was no indication of my sexuality. Basically, I had to spend my life pretending I was something I wasn't.

And these are not even my traumas.

So, when I listen and read about individuals that are upset by the trauma they suffered at the hands of the police, and they should not be allowed to march in a Pride Parade because they are/ could be a trigger, I say take some responsibility for yourself. Have some understanding that you are the one responsible for interacting with the world. It is not everyone else’s responsibility to make the world safe for you. There are too many different traumas, and you or your group are not unique. However, if you are the victim of a trauma that can be “categorized” into a a common group trauma (i.e. a perceived or actual injustice by the police), feel some solace in that fact that you can share recovery from that trauma with others today. There was a time, no matter what you were you couldn't. In the past, some of us had no chance to share our trauma even if we were white males. Thus we suffered till late in life.

I suffer from PTSD, clinical depression and high functioning anxiety because of the traumas I have been through. Many, many things are triggers, life is a process that is controlled by highly structured regulatory. One that requires me to regulate myself, so that I can go out, and take part in life. So, it’s not easy. Many thing are a trigger, and I use tools and techniques to function on a day to day basis.

The thing I don't do is ask the world to stop because of my triggers. I don't think, expect or mandate that safe spaces be made for me so I can go out in the world. I make my safe spaces for myself, so that I can exist. I don't ask or expect other to change to fit my issues. That would not be fair.

Surviving trauma means you are a survivor. Easier said then done. But it is possible, and it can stop being everyone else’s fault.
There are many things that I could try to demand not be a part of my Pride because of the fact they could be a trigger. I would never do that. That is not my place, or my right. My right is to heal myself.

So my point. Stop asking for everything from everyone else. Take some responsibility for yourself. Yes what has happened to you, and me is horrible. But it is unique to you, and everyone’s experience is the same. So stop trying to force your experience on everyone else. Make yourself whole. In doing so, don’t make someone else incomplete.
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#611642 City of Victoria | 2018-2022 | Mayor and council general discussion

Posted by rjag on 19 July 2021 - 11:47 AM

Tbh, Adam Stirling is a bit of a weird arrogant douche bag, but I’m tempted to nominate him.. :)


Whatever your opinion of him, he's the only one exposing the circus and terrible governance and holding the fools to account.

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#601541 City of Victoria | 2018-2022 | Mayor and council general discussion

Posted by Awaiting Juno on 28 April 2021 - 10:49 AM

It's an oxymoron, not seeing much in the way of actual social justice being realized. I'm seeing people who work very hard for what they have, having their stuff stolen. I'm seeing people who pay the highest towards social goods, like public parks, and good roads being deprived of those social goods. I'm not seeing much in the way of public safety - and I'm seeing a lot of denigration of some who work the hardest at that, our first responders - that does not seem socially just. I'm seeing people who genuinely care, having their reputations dragged through the mud and being called all kinds of names - meanwhile, those whose acts have done the most harm are riding upon some might high horses.


I'm seeing people who damage public property, people who assault, people who steal - largely get away with it. Again, this is not social justice.


It's been an exhausting 2.5 years, and it appears the next 535 days are also going to be tiresome. What'll be worse: if we do not defend those doing what they can to restore true social justice and allow these "warriors" to ensure that the only narrative that gets heard, is the one they want heard. 

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#592837 Clover Point

Posted by rjag on 25 February 2021 - 09:09 PM



A picnic at Clover Picnic Point today. We should all thank Mayor and Council for this amazing gift to the people

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#579419 City of Victoria | 2020 by-election

Posted by Stephen Andrew on 13 December 2020 - 12:35 AM

Thank you for your kind words and support.

Stefanie Hardman did call and graciously concede.
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#569446 City of Victoria | 2018-2022 | Mayor and council general discussion

Posted by rjag on 21 October 2020 - 07:40 AM

Jeremy, just because you put a motion forward does not excuse you from owning the mess at COV. Good Governance and Fiscal Management takes a backseat to experimental ideology. The actions of this Council over the last 1 1/2 terms are nothing short of embarrassing. 


We have a 27,000 name petition regarding the mess at BHP, a lawsuit by concerned Citizens against CoV regarding BHP. This council fiddles while Rome burns talking incessantly about removing ACAB from a taxpayer funded mural because feelings and stuff but you ignore the pleas of small businesses that are failing because of the persistent criminality and open drug use. You ignore the pleas of Citizens whose properties are vandalised and ongoing theft of property wherever these tent cities appear. Your anti-car rhetoric is creating congestion and more GHG's but yup lets ban a few plastic bags....


What skills do these people have sitting around that table that can contribute to the proper Good Governance and Fiscal Management of the City? Heck we have councilors decrying the evils of capitalism, playing identity politics, class warfare and all the foolish nonsensical ideas that die on 1st year University debate floors. This council strays so far out its lane its only surprising when they don't.


People in general dont give a crap about pronouns, they like horse carriages and cruise ships and all the money they bring here. We own more cars than ever, but we also like good bike paths not poorly thought out ones. My 83 year old M-I-L wants to enjoy the Park again, she doesnt want to be robbed for the 4th time (3 times are enough) she wants to sleep through the night with her window open without worrying someone may try to climb in...is that too much to frigging ask??????? 


All Citizens want is a good job, a decent place to call home & clean safe streets, safe schools and places to shop and recreate. In return they will happily pay their taxes to provide for the services to help other Citizens.  


Tell me that this is Victoria today....

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#550672 City of Victoria | 2018-2022 | Mayor and council general discussion

Posted by Awaiting Juno on 29 June 2020 - 09:43 AM

The goal is to make themselves and their base victims and stoke anger so that they can then be used at the voting station.


I think it's pretty clear who the victims are - Cynthia Diadick (who commenced the Beacon Hill Park petition), who had her life threatened and that of her little dog, the single mom whose apartment had repeated attempted break ins, the families who don't feel safe going to a *public park*, the small business owner attacked outside of their place of business (Cherry Bomb Toys), the people who don't feel safe going to work because they've been assaulted, etc.  We've made a community that has fallen apart.  Where those who "have" are told that they are privileged and somehow deserving of attack where those who have not are beyond reproach because they have suffered traumas in their lives or are at the mercy of addiction.  I'm sorry, but in a community - everyone's rights matter and people don't get a free pass on violating somebody else's rights because of their socio-economic status.  We better start doing things differently pretty soon, or things are only going to get worse.  

#526696 Wet'suwet'en; First Nation protests | News and issues

Posted by Kungsberg on 12 February 2020 - 12:23 PM

John Horgan is giving a press conference right now (live), and when asked what his thoughts were about Ben Isitt & his comments re: the demonstration/blockade yesterday, Horgan said "My thoughts on that individual are not printable."

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#453177 2018 City of Victoria election

Posted by Stephen Andrew on 31 August 2018 - 02:43 AM

Stephen Andrew declares run for Victoria Council

VICTORIA, August 30, 2018 – Stephen Andrew, the former television journalist and talk show host is running for a seat on Victoria Council.
“For the past several years we moved away from good governance. Well, it’s time for a change, we need new voices at the council table that are respectful, reasoned and provide superior leadership,” says Andrew.
The Executive Director of a national patient organization that supports, educates and advocates for cancer patients and their families says the deciding factor for joining the race is the lack of process in the removal of the Sir John A. Macdonald statue outside Victoria City Hall.
“The Mayor and majority of council were so disrespectful to all citizens of Victoria,” explains Andrew. “The council believes the wave of anger they experience is just the issue of the statue. From what I’m hearing it’s the breaking point for a number of poorly handled issues.”
Andrew says his work, his volunteer contribution and participation on community boards has prepared him for a seat at the council table.
“I have the knowledge, the experience and the passion to work with others to provide good governance for a better Victoria.
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#417459 The Victoria crime thread

Posted by Mike K. on 27 December 2017 - 04:38 PM

The Oak Bay Police Department isn't holding back.


The force posted a New Year's resolution message on Twitter, to which Chrissy Brett replied.


OBPD: Any #newyearsresolutions this year?  May we kindly suggest 'stopping completely at stop signs'? The #oakbay Police have some resolutions this year...and you set them for us! You identified our priorities for the next 5 yrs and we're looking forward to delivering.


Chrissy Brett: My new yrs resolution is a round 2 of municipalities we've already been too....afternwe have cycled through Central Saanich & Sidney to add to our list of PDs who work with us not mud sling.  Only part of Duncan RCMP and Westshore RCMP & oak bay pd make it personal not policing


OBPD: We have an invoice for you. It was initially going to be mailed to your home...but I felt we should just hold it for you for if you came back.  Its for the damaged bench $1500 & 3 Hazmat call-outs ($500 each). I'll hold it here & if you return to camp, it will be served on you.

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#383374 [Bicycles] Bike lanes and cycling infrastructure in Victoria and the south Is...

Posted by shoeflack on 15 May 2017 - 09:18 AM

You know, it's honestly so sad really to see the constant anti-bike sentiment here. Such a North American way of thinking to need an instant return on investment with these bike lanes. What ever happened to planting a tree under whose shade you don't expect to sit.


I can walk by any number of modern buildings in Victoria, something we always champion as being a positive for the City, that have empty ground floor commercial space. Does that make those buildings a failure? Sure, it wasn't public dollars spent, but it's the same principle.


What about Dwight D. Eisenhower. Was he a fool for creating the Interstate Highway System? Building massive road infrastructure that he would never see reach it's full potential in his lifetime? But something that no one can now argue was a failure.


It takes time for projects to reach their full potential. This is called pro-active planning. We bemoan the Mackenzie Interchange as being reactive planning, yet we now bemoan this pro-active planning as well? Complaining for the sake of complaining if I've ever seen it.

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#559734 City of Victoria | 2018-2022 | Mayor and council general discussion

Posted by Mike K. on 27 August 2020 - 09:39 AM

Stirling did not hold back today.


He called council clowns, and one by one lambasted them with a fury I have not heard from him in quite some time. He also made mention of Loveday and Dubow heading home to Esquimalt, and TJ and Alto back to Saanich. He didn't leave the mayor out, he said she heads back to her home in Fernwood near a park that is forbidden as a camping area. Potts, he said, at least lives near Beacon Hill Park, and for Isitt he played clips of him talking about defunding the police.


The host also used other words for council, and they were not very nice. Today's radio show, at least as far as a media personality describing elected officials, was groundbreaking and historic.

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#449546 Victoria City Hall's statue of Sir John A. MacDonald could be on the move

Posted by Greg on 08 August 2018 - 03:43 PM

I have a personal theory about how to frame these discussions of statues and memorials of flawed historical figures. Here it is:

History, particularly in the West, has been a largely (but not entirely) uninterrupted if incomplete move from the privileged few, to the privileged minority, to the privileged majority, to egalitarianism. From a king, to a king with barons, to landed white males, and so forth. Famous historical figures come overwhelmingly from the privileged groups. Pretty much the only historical figures from Western Civilization that are famous from a thousand years ago are kings, explorers, and conquerors. Most of the famous historical figures from 100 years ago are white males. This is through no flaw of the unprivileged, it is just a question of access to power. If you were a white landed male 150 years ago, you were surrounded by an unjust system. Most of the injustice was just "the way things were" and probably not even something you overtly thought about. Some of it may have been injustices that you actively worked to maintain. On rare occasions in history, some person in a privileged position actually worked actively to correct an injustice.

It is acceptable to celebrate a flawed man who worked actively to improve some aspect of an unjust system, even if he failed to address, and benefited from other elements of the unjust system into which he was born. If a white male lives in a time and place where black men are enslaved, women are treated as chattel, and homosexuals are prosecuted, and he dedicates his life to trying to end slavery, but ignores the plight of women and gays, then I think it is reasonable to celebrate his efforts to end slavery. It is also reasonable to note the less favorable aspects of his life.

So for me, the way to judge a statue of a famous but flawed historical figure, is to determine if the statue is specifically celebrating something that current moral standards find repugnant, or is it celebrating something virtuous and worthwhile (despite the other flawed positions the historical figure may have had). If city hall had a statue celebrating John MacDonald's role in residential schools, I don't think any reasonable person would support it remaining in place. If it is on the other hand celebrating his role as a founding father of Canada, then it makes sense for it to be there. Rather than remove it, I would prefer to append additional historical information, specifically addressing MacDonald's shortcomings.

This is why, IMHO, it makes perfect sense to remove Confederate leader statues in the South that were put in place for the purpose of celebrating some historical figure's act of treason while sending a (not very) subtle message of support for white privilege, but it is not appropriate to remove a statue of Thomas Jefferson. Jefferson (presumably) is being celebrated for writing the Declaration of Independence, or founding the University of Virginia. He is not specifically being celebrated for being a slave owner and raping Sally Hemmings. Those shortcomings can and should be addressed, but he still is an indisputably important historical figure who helped propel civilization forward.

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#325461 Victoria homelessness and street-related issues

Posted by HB on 11 July 2016 - 07:08 AM



















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#549056 Victoria grocery store and supermarket discussion

Posted by Matt R. on 18 June 2020 - 07:04 PM

Why are you always such an ass?

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