QC mayor takes funeral fight to Victoria’s door

  • Mar. 3, 2015 5:00 a.m.

By Shaun ThomasPrince RupertQueen Charlotte Mayor Greg Martin is taking the fight to keep funeral services in the community straight to the Legislature in Victoria.During a trip to Prince Rupert for the Feb. 20 meeting of the Skeena – Queen Charlotte Regional District, Martin made overturning the recent cease-and-desist order handed to George Westwood by Consumer Protection B.C. a top priority.”I spent just over an hour with MLA Jennifer Rice today and she said Charlotte was the only community that got turned in, even though this is a common problem. We’re trying to kick this upstairs and so I sent a letter to Minister Coralee Oakes and also to Jen, who was very helpful,” he told directors at the meeting, accusing Consumer Protection B.C. of “targeting” Westwood.”Jen was puzzled. Just last week during budget discussions this government said they were going to help out real folks with getting the red tape out of their lives and cutting the red tape out. It seems they’re cutting the red tape, but it’s lengthwise and we’re choking on it. What do they expect us to do?”As well as meeting with the MLA, Martin made a trip to the funeral home in Prince Rupert where he was told the business would not travel to Queen Charlotte and that the cost of a basic funeral would be $7,000 plus another $2,300 for a plot in Fairview Cemetery.”There is some uncertainty in the community and a lot of nervousness right now. We now have people saying, ‘well I guess I just better not die then’. It’s a very serious situation,” he said, finding support for his plight from regional district chair Barry Pages of Masset.”What do they expect us to do on the island?” questioned Pages.

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