Greater Victoria Crossing Guard Association faces funding shortage after taking over in 2018

Victoria crossing guards request more funds from City of Victoria

The Greater Victoria Crossing Guard Association (GVCGA) is asking the City of Victoria for more funding to cover the upcoming school year.

In 2018 the GVCGA took over the crossing guard duties from Beacon Community Services, which usually received a grant from Victoria between $30,000-$37,000. After stepping forward, the GVCGA fought to transfer funding already approved to Beacon from local municipalities, mostly with success. What the group didn’t anticipate was that Beacon Community Services hadn’t applied for any funding whatsoever in 2018.

“We’ve had a shortfall in funding,” said GVCGA president Audrey Smith. “We discovered the problem our association is facing due to the transition that happened between service procurement.”

ALSO READ: School safety program saved by new non-profit

This has led to delayed back payments that already swallowed up the $25,000 the City of Victoria approved for 2019, prompting the GVCGA to request an additional $69,000 to allow for staffing from September 2019 to June 2020. This would help cover 10.5 positions, two hours per school day at minimum wage, insurance and management costs. It would would also allow for two vacancies to be filled at the intersections of Hillside Avenue and Doncaster Drive, and Bay and Forbes Streets.

The GVCGA also receives $84,300 from Saanich, $32,420 from View Royal, $6,500 from the Greater Victoria Harbour Authority, $20,000 from the Macaulay Elementary PAC, and $13,100 from Oak Bay to meet budget costs for crosswalks across Greater Victoria.

Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps said the matter needs to still be discussed by councillors, but is supportive of issuing a grant from the city’s contingency fund.

ALSO READ: Victoria council votes to cover funding shortage for crossing guards

“Kids are our most vulnerable road users, and most vulnerable pedestrians,” Helps said. “We need crossing guards to ensure they’re crossing the street safely.”

Helps added that more pedestrians are anticipated coming as of 202o with the Greater Victoria School District’s (SD61) catchment boundary changes.

SD61 has not put forward any funds to cover the costs of crossing guards, Smith said, adding that it was her understanding that streets and transportation fall out of the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Education.

Regardless, Helps said more conversations need to happen with the school district to ensure a more sustainable payment method for crossing guards.

“September is around the corner and I don’t think we should bicker about who is going to pay for kids’ safety,” Helps said. “But, hopefully we can have a larger conversation about this soon.”

Send a Tweet: @NicoleCrescenzi

Like us on Facebook  

City of Victoriasd61

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

Just Posted

Area residents concerned about aftermath of McKenzie interchange construction

Ministry says neighbours’ concerns being heard, will be addressed

West Shore’s 10 worst intersections for crashes in 2019

Millstream Road, Veterans Memorial Parkway area continues to be a hotspot

Saanich council seeks more information after hearing Uptown-Douglas plan

Council asks for further reports on economic, housing, transportation plans for corridor

Teen killer Kelly Ellard gets day parole extension allowing up to five days at home

Ellard is serving a life sentence for the 1997 murder of 14-year-old Reena Virk

UPDATE: Two dead after fishing boat sinks off southern Vancouver Island

Shawnigan Lake-registered Arctic Fox II went down off Cape Flattery, west of Victoria

DFO says 5 aggrieved B.C First Nations were consulted on fisheries plan

Nuu-chah-nulth First Nations calls response ‘a sham,’ adding DFO never incorporates their views

Man arrested after stabbing incident at makeshift camp near Vancouver Island mall

RCMP in Parksville report 28-year-old man taken into custody without incident

Canucks ride momentum into NHL playoff series against defending Stanley Cup champs

PREVIEW: Vancouver opens against St. Louis on Wednesday

Pitt Meadows woman gives birth on in-laws’ driveway

Frédérique Gagnon new son is appropriately named after Norse trickster god

Man, 54, charged in connection with fatal attack of Red Deer doctor

Doctor was killed in his walk-in clinic on Monday

Landlord takes front door, windows after single B.C. mom late with rent

Maple Ridge mom gets help from community generosity and government

VIDEO: B.C. community rallies to save snared eagle

Revelstoke climber scales tree to save the raptor

42 more people test positive for COVID-19 in B.C.

The province has recorded no new deaths in recent days

Most Read