MLAs, protesters ready for action as legislature opens today

The B.C. legislature will be buzzing with activity this coming week — inside, MLAs return for a six-week fall session, while outside, protesters will strive to get the politicians’ attention.

At least three demonstrations are set for the grounds of the legislature, two on Monday and one on Wednesday.

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At noon Monday, a rally will protest the construction of a luxury home over a First Nations burial ground on Grace Islet in Ganges Harbour. It’s expected to attract indigenous leaders, local politicians, Saltspring Islanders and other opponents.

At 1 p.m., the Victoria Committee to End Homelessness plans to be on the legislature steps to challenge Premier Christy Clark to create a social-housing plan after last winter saw families with children being turned away from overpacked shelters.

At the same time, Clark is to greet Lt.-Gov. Judith Guichon on the legislature steps during an arrival ceremony marked by a guard of honour and 15-gun vice-regal salute.

The lieutenant-governor will open the session and read the speech from the throne.

On Wednesday morning, the Victoria Faith in Action group, a consortium of spiritually minded activists, will take to the legislature to deliver a social covenant document they’ve created in the hope of starting a values-based dialogue with the provincial government. The group wants to tackle the issue of child poverty.

“I believe we have more in common than we don’t have,” said organizer Peggy Wilmot. “We’re not asking the government to spend more money, just spend it smarter. It’s a chance to do the right thing while being fiscally responsible.”

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