Letters Nov. 27: Asking for proof is OK; loss of access to Government House grounds

Proof is sought all the time

A Times Colonist story reported: “Wendy Cox, executive director of the Victoria Resource Disability Centre, said people shouldn’t have to prove they’re disabled and unable to wear a mask.”

And yet, they are asked all the time to prove that they need the reserved spots in parking areas.

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How is this different?

I’m all for reserving parking spots for those with disabilities, as I am all for allowing those with disabilities to not wear masks. But please, allow stores and others to know that you are in that minority.

It is no different than insisting that those with service dogs prove that they are eligible and that the dogs are trained to be in public areas that normally would not allow dogs.

Mead Simon

Talk to people waiting for the ferry

Would it not make sense to have checkers at the Tsawwassen and Horseshoe Bay ferry terminals to interview travellers and find out if their travel is essential, or what they regard as essential?

When people are in the ferry lineup, they are just waiting and the travelling would not be hampered by being interviewed. This way the authorities could learn if government instructions are being followed.

There would be a question, of course, of what to do, if someone’s travel is obviously not essential. My inclination would be that travel should be stopped, as it is clearly not allowed under current rules, but apart from this, it would be valuable to find out if more enforcement is warranted.

At the moment, there are relatively few cases on the island. Checking passengers on the way here would be a way of keeping it that way.

If measures are instituted soon, they would work. If measures are delayed, they in all probability will not, and the opportunity will be gone.

Why not take steps now and limit the importation of cases to the island?

Christian Janssen

Speed cameras would help public safety

With new fines for not complying with public safety requirements regarding masks in public areas, perhaps it is time for the province to extend this thinking and implement the pilot program for interval speed cameras on the ­Malahat.

Every week we hear of some idiot being caught driving at double the speed limit. Speed cameras would quickly put an end to this behaviour, and that’s the goal isn’t it — to put an end to this ­behaviour?

Chris Foord
Oak Bay

Care about health, not about money

While I agree with the person who wrote in complaining that their place of worship was closed while bars and restaurants were allowed to remain open, I find it very easy to explain why.


Churches might contribute to the spiritual well-being of those who attend, but they don’t put much money back into the system. If the government folks who make the rules cared a little more about our health and a little less about money we would be in a total shutdown and not living a world of random ineffective Band-aids.

C. Scott Stofer

A peaceful respite, but gates are locked

Once again I find myself writing to Government House in the wake of yet another shortsighted decision to close services at a time when its constituents need them most.

First, Government House closed the public washrooms in the spring, impacting seniors, children and whoever else found themselves in need of relief while visiting the grounds. Thankfully, that decision was reversed.

And now, Government House chooses to close the entire grounds, including huge swaths of open green space, just as the public is once again facing severe restrictions that impact their well-being. When so many facilities are being shuttered, the Government House grounds offered a peaceful respite to wander among the many gardens or walk the trails, all with enough space to keep a safe distance.

Now that refuge has been taken away and the gates locked.

Robyn Swanson

A piece of heaven, but just get out

Closing the grounds at Government House smacks of elitism at best. I’m tempted to think that maybe we were never ever really welcome there in the first place.

These are stressful times and for those of us lucky to live nearby, walking in the gardens is crucial to our mental health. Now we have to either drive to other parks in the city or walk the sidewalks in the neighbourhood.

I simply fail to understand the risk in visiting this little piece of heaven while following, of course, every one of Dr. Bonnie Henry’s recommendations.

Paul Cunnington

Cycling, walking trails vital to our health

I was diagnosed with prostate cancer at the age of 65, in the fall of 2005.

It was decided that a surgical procedure, prostatectomy was our choice of treatment. Getting exceptional health care from my family doctor, the urologist, nursing staff at the Victoria ­General ­Hospital and my spouse provided a ­surgical cure.

Movember has special significance for my family, including my grandson who proudly sent a picture of his moustache today.

By January 2006 my convalescents resulted in concern about my cholesterol levels. I asked my doctor for a statin drug prescription.

My practical doctor suggested a change in lifestyle to see if a “green prescription” might help. He suggested trying more exercise and a good diet before drugs.

At the end of the visit my doctor had changed my mindset and kindly challenged me to get off my “duff.” That was 15 years and 60,540 kilometres ago.

I have averaged 4,033 kilometres per year, cycling on safe accessible trails paid for by our local, provincial and federal taxpayers. This healthy 80-year-old is aware and grateful for the resources and hard negotiations that make Greater Victoria cycling trails available for every­one’s physical and mental health.

I continually see improving relationships among partners in our shared community of cyclists, equestrians, pedestrians and vehicle drivers.

I often get and give greetings, smiles or waves of acknowledgement on the trails and at intersections. It might be because I am an old guy but I would rather think it is because we are all learning.

I believe cyclists have an obligation to do our part to enhance our partners’ rights and to respectfully share our great trails and roads.

Harry Atkinson

Times Colonist helps start the day

As an elderly lady of 88, I cast my mind back to my childhood where my sister and I sat on our parents’ bed to open Christmas presents.

My father. a heavy smoker, died at 54 while my mother passed away at 104. I will never forget those happy days prior to the Second World War. Wonderful memories that appear to be lost in this modern-age madness.

The one good thing my husband and I enjoy is reading the Times Colonist six mornings each week. Your paper is always waiting for us when we get up.

Please keep maintaining the excellence of the TC even though there appears to be little to cheer about in the modern era.

The Times Colonist starts our day with an uplifting hour and we maintain that attitude for the rest of the day.

Kathleen S. Quilter

Live in Victoria? That would help

Like many who live in the city of Victoria, I am trying to determine who to vote for in the upcoming byelection. I have been disappointed with our present council because they don’t seem to consider the needs of citizens like myself.

Four of our seven councillors do not even live in Victoria and I believe this is part of the problem.

When I review the list of candidates for the byelection, six of the eleven do not identify whether they live in the city itself, including the two supposed front runners.

I think it is important that the city insist candidates for council declare whether they are residents of the city.

Paul Brown


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• Mail: Letters to the editor, Times Colonist, 201-655 Tyee Rd., Victoria, B.C. V9A 6X5

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