Federal NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh speaks in Surrey on Aug. 30, 2019. (Surrey Board of Trade photo)

Policies on veterans, climate change emerge as leaders head back to the trail

Campaign discussions shifted back to meat-and-potatoes policy after fallout from blackface scandal

Discussion on the campaign trail shifted back to meat-and-potatoes policy Sunday after a steady diet of fallout from Justin Trudeau’s blackface scandal.

Recently discovered images showing Trudeau in black- or brownface at costume events before he entered politics dominated the last few days of the campaign, throwing Liberal re-election efforts off course.

After a break from the trail Saturday, Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer visited Prince Edward Island to promise more robust support for veterans after moves by Liberal and Tory governments angered them.

Scheer said as prime minister he would clear a backlog of veterans’ benefit applications within two years and create a reliable pension system.

“To every veteran who has struggled and who has continued to struggle without the support and benefits you have earned through your service, my message is this: You have been betrayed, but you deserve better,” he said.

Scheer is also promising to strengthen post-service transition supports, help more veterans get service dogs, enshrine in legislation a guarantee that every veteran is treated with respect and gets services in a timely manner, and support commemoration projects such as the National Memorial for Canada’s War in Afghanistan.

“As prime minister I will take a personal interest in ensuring the commitments we made today are followed through on,” he said.

READ MORE: Singh campaigns in Toronto, May in Winnipeg, as Liberal and Tory leaders pause

During a stop in Gatineau, Que., NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh pledged to add $2.5 billion to the federal government’s disaster mitigation fund.

Singh says the idea is to help people — like those in west Quebec who recently faced severe flooding — avoid disasters and be able to stay in their current homes.

The national Disaster Mitigation and Adaptation Fund has already set aside $2 billion to support large-scale infrastructure programs that help communities better manage such risks.

The federal government says an increasing number of Canadian communities have experienced significant weather-related events and disasters triggered by natural hazards such as floods, wildland fires and droughts — events that are becoming more frequent due to climate change.

Singh said “we can’t just close our eyes” to the prospect of more weather-related calamities.

Trudeau, meanwhile, is promising a new policy announcement later Sunday at a residential subdivision in Brampton, Ont.

Green Leader Elizabeth May doesn’t have big plans Sunday other than a fundraiser in Victoria.

May was in Winnipeg on Saturday to talk up her party’s plans to combat the opioid crisis by decriminalizing drug possession and improving social supports for people who use drugs.

Asked about the proposal Sunday, Scheer said while he would not recriminalize possession of small amounts of marijuana, the Conservatives think making other drugs legal is a bad idea.

— With files from Kelly Geraldine Malone

Jim Bronskill, The Canadian Press

READ MORE: Handgun crackdown, health spending and transit plans latest campaign promises

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Oak Bay cyclist runner-up in Spanish stage race

Adam de Vos on podium amongst World Tour best in Spain

Unrelated occupancy limits creating divisions in Saanich

Gordon Head Residents’ Association wants to see conditions to hold landlords accountable

Oak Bay council looks to whittle down tax increase from 8.05 per cent

Draft financial plan continues hyper-focus on replacing aging infrastructure

Greater Victoria has Canada’s sixth-highest ‘moving penalty’

Disparity between vacant/occupied units incentivizes renovictions and reduces mobility, researcher says

Grave site at Ross Bay Cemetery vandalized overnight

Graffiti found on grave of Sir James Douglas

VIDEO: B.C. senior recalls ‘crazy’ wartime decision to grab bear cub from den

Henry Martens – now 96 – says he was lucky to be alive after youthful decision to enter a bear’s den

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of Feb. 18

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

POLL: Do you support the proposed changes for ICBC?

Tuesday’s provincial budget predicted a shift from shortfall to surplus in wake… Continue reading

RCMP clarifies stance on removing officers from Wet’suwet’en territory in northern B.C.

Police say will remove officers only if hereditary chiefs keep road open to pipeline workers

B.C., Ottawa sign sweeping 30-year deal for northern caribou habitat

West Moberly, Saulteau co-manage new protection on two million acres

Suspect at large after stealing seaplane before crashing into another in Vancouver

Police responded to the incident at 3:30 a.m. on Friday at Vancouver Harbour

PHOTOS: 2020 BC Winter Games kick off in Fort St. John

More than 1,000 of B.C.’s best athletes will be competing over the next three days

Meet the Wet’suwet’en who want the Coastal GasLink pipeline

Supporters of the pipeline are upset only one side is being heard nationwide

Most Read