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Monthly Archives: January 2019


B.C. election 2017: Surrey-Guildford riding

This newly-named riding (it consists mostly of the old Surrey-Tynehead riding) would have gone to the BC Liberals under the new riding boundaries in 2013 by a slim margin of 44.5 per cent to 42.8 per cent over the NDP (a gap of just 269 votes).

In 2009: BC Liberal incumbent Dave Hayer defeated NDP candidate Pat Zanon by over 1,500 votes, 53-43 per cent.

HangZhou Night Net

History & Geography: Created in 2001 to cover the city’s rapidly expanding northeastern suburbs, Surrey-Tynehead stretches from 144th Street to the Langley border at 196th street, with it’s southern edge slowly dipping down from 108 Avenue to 80th Avenue. The riding also includes Barnstrom Island. It has gone to the Liberals in all three of its elections, though the NDP have shown strength in the northwest section of the riding close to the Port Mann Bridge.


Liberals – Amrik Virk: The Minister of Technology, Innovation and Citizens’ Services, Virk was an inspector with Langley RCMP before entering politics. He spent 25 years with the Mounties, working in Alberta, Surrey and Langley.

NDP – Garry Begg: Recently retired as inspector after 38 years with the RCMP. He ran federally for the NDP in 2015 in the Fleetwood-Port Kells riding. He has pledged to work for safer neighbourhoods, better transit, and more affordable housing.

Greens – Jodi Murphy: According to her website, Murphy has worked for the last 10 years at a locally-owned company that provides specialized technical services to the pulp and paper industry.

Christian Heritage Party of B.C. – Kevin Pielak: The Christian Heritage Party is running five candidates in 2017, after running two candidate is 2013. It’s a libertarian party with a Christian focus.

2017 Stats: Surrey-Guildford

Population (2014): 58,037 (39th)
Population Deviation from Average: 9.3 per cent
Area: 42 sq km (59th)
Pop Density: 1,381.8 (29th)
Average Age: 38.2 years (75th)
English as Second Language: 49.09 per cent (18th)

Top 3 Second Languages:
Tagalog (Pilipino, Filipino) – 6.18 per cent
Korean – 5.92 per cent
Mandarin – 5.85 per cent


B.C. election 2017: Surrey Green Timbers riding

In 2013: NDP incumbent Sue Hammell easily won re-election, beating Liberal Amrik Tung 58 per cent to 34 per cent.

In 2009: Hammell thumped the competition in this riding, defeating Liberal Rani Mangat by over 7000 votes, 73-24 per cent—the NDP’s biggest margin of victory.

HangZhou Night Net

History & Geography: Created in 1991, Surrey-Green Timbers is directly south of Whalley, bordered by Scott Road to the west, 144th Street to the east, 96th Avenue to the north, and 80th Avenue to the south (save for a small section that goes down to 75th Avenue on its western end). It has gone to Sue Hammell in every election it has been contested except 2001.

This year, even with Hammell retiring from politics, the NDP is expected to hold the riding.


Liberals – Brenda Locke: Previously the MLA for Surrey-Green Timbers from 2001 to 2005 (the only time Sue Hammell was beaten), Locke served as minister of state for mental health and addiction services.

NDP – Rachna Singh: A CUPE employee and anti-racism activist, Singh emigrated to Canada from India 15 years ago. She has a masters of psychology degree and has worked as a drug and alcohol counsellor and support worker for victims of domestic violence.

Greens – Saira Aujla: A realtor, Aujla grew up in Hong Kong and speaks Cantonese, Punjabi, Hindi and English. She ran for nomination for the federal Liberals in the last election cycle.

Your Political Party of BC (YPP) – Kanwaljit Singh Moti: The YPP is running nine candidates in 2017. Their “open platform” includes a Reddit-based online discussion, and a focus on “open government” and sustainability.

2017 Stats: Surrey-Green Timbers

Population (2014): 58,816 (28th)
Population Deviation from Average: 10.7 per cent
Area: 18 sq km (72nd)
Pop Density: 3,267.6 (15th)
Average Age: 34.4 years (86th)
English as Second Language: 69.37 per cent (3rd)

Top 3 Second Languages:
Panjabi (Punjabi) – 48.60 per cent
Hindi – 6.03 per cent
Tagalog (Pilipino, Filipino) – 2.39 per cent


‘Mosque’ spray-painted on Jasper outhouses ‘not very Canadian’: Parks Canada

Tyler Johnstone, 28, was driving on Highway 16 through Jasper National Park on Wednesday when he spotted the word “mosque” spray painted in bright yellow on the side of an outhouse in a rest area.

He drove past the vandalism, but what he saw bothered him too much to ignore it.

READ MORE: Cold Lake mosque hit by vandals 

HangZhou Night Net

“I drove past it and I drove for about five minutes and thought about it and I had to turn around and come back. It’s just disgusting,” he said in a video posted to Facebook on Wednesday morning.

“Whoever wrote that… you should be disgraced. You deserve to be at the bottom of that toilet. I’m not going to let your stupidity be seen by anybody driving by.”

He said the the implication of the outdoor bathroom being a place of worship gave him a sick feeling.

READ MORE: Police investigating anti-Muslim hate crimes in Fort Saskatchewan 

“It’s not the graffiti,” he said. “I’m a photographer, so I’m an artist myself. There’s lots of graffiti in the city and lots of it is beautiful. But that’s not graffiti – it’s just hate. It’s easily portrayed as hate and I just didn’t want any more people to see that.”

“Hate only instills more hate.”

Johnstone works for a laundry repair company and was on his way back to Edmonton after a work call in Jasper. He was on the clock when he turned around to remove it.

“I’m sure they won’t mind that I took 20 minutes to do this.”

READ MORE: ‘We’re proud of Cold Lakers and proud of Canada’: Mayor on community support following vandalism at local mosque 

He originally planned to scrape the paint away but was worried about causing further damage to the building.

“So I covered it up with some tape and then let Parks Canada know it was there,” he told Global News.

A Parks Canada spokesperson said, after talking Johnstone, highway patrol staff were sent out to inspect other rest areas and found two other washrooms had been vandalized with a similar message.

READ MORE: Cold Lake Muslims thank those who rallied behind them, one month after vandalism

The vandalism Johnstone spotted was near the Jasper House lookout, about halfway between the Jasper town-site and the east gates of the park. Staff said the second “mosque” graffiti was at the other end of the park, on Highway 16 between the town and the west gates.

“[It’s] not very Canadian. Not keeping with the values and traditions of Parks Canada,” media spokesperson Steve Young said.

As of 5 p.m. Thursday, all three spots had been fixed or were in the process of being addressed.

Jasper National Park on April 2, 2017.

File/Global News

Parks Canada has hired more staff in preparation of more visitors this year because admission to all national parks is free to celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday. However Young said there’s no evidence more visitors will equate to more vandalism.

READ MORE: Parks Canada website swamped by demand for free 2017 national parks passes

Parks Canada has doubled the number of wildlife guardians for Maligne Lake Road and Highway 93, Young said. The staffers will respond to wildlife jams throughout the park and provide information to visitors about animals like elk, bighorn sheep and mountain goats. The idea is to ensure the safety of both visitors and wildlife.

Gates staff have been reallocated to other areas. Young said some gate staff — who would normally be collecting entrance fees, but are not this year — have also been reassigned to areas of greater use this year.

Elk in Jasper National Park. April 2, 2017.

Karen Bartko, Global News

Johnstone posted his video rant when he reached Hinton, about 45 minutes east of Jasper.

By time he arrived in Edmonton, his video has garnered a big reaction.

“Just had lots of support, lots of love. Everybody just, I guess, really appreciated it.”


B.C. election 2017: Surrey-Fleetwood riding

In 2013: Liberal Peter Fassbender narrowly won the riding by 200 votes 45.4 per cent – 44.4 per cent. The changes to the riding’s boundaries slightly favour the NDP to the point where, if you transpose the 2013 results on the new boundaries, the NDP would have won this seat with by 627 votes (46.9 per cent —; 43.4 per cent). Still, in 2013 Fassbender boosted the BC Liberal vote by 2,100 while the NDP remained static from 2009. Fassbender has profile, recognition and the incumbent’s advantage, but we’ll see if that’s enough to win.

HangZhou Night Net

In 2009: The NDP’s Jagrup Brar, formerly the MLA for Surrey-Panorama, won this newly created riding, defeating Liberal candidate Jagmohan Singh by nearly 2,000 votes, 49-40 per cent.

History & Geography: Created for the 2009 election when Surrey gained an additional seat, the riding comprises the general Fleetwood area. It is centred around the Fraser Highway from 148th to 164th Street.


Liberals – Peter Fassbender: Minister of Community, Sport, Cultural Development and Minister Responsible for TransLink. Fassbender previously was Minister of Education. Fassbender was elected as a councillor in Langley 2002, then mayor in 2005. He is the former Chair of the Mayors’ Council on Regional Transportation, and has sat on many Metro Vancouver and Fraser Valley committees during his political career.

NDP – Jagrup Brar: Former MLA who was defeated in 2013. Brar was first elected in a 2004 by-election, defeating future cabinet minister Mary Polak. Before entering politics, he was the executive director of a Surrey entrepreneur group, and worked in the public and non-profit sectors. Born in India, he was once on the country’s national basketball team.

Greens  – Tim Binnema: Repeat Green Party candidate. An engineer, Binnema works for A.H. Lundberg Systems Limited as a manager. Raised in Telkwa, Binnema graduated from BCIT, and is a canvasser for the Canadian Cancer Society.

2017 Stats: Surrey-Fleetwood

Population (2014): 60,477 (12th)
Population Deviation from Average: 13.9 per cent
Area: 17 sq km (74th)
Pop Density: 3,557.5 (14th)
Average Age: 37.7 years (78th)
English as Second Language: 55.24 per cent (12th)

Top 3 Second Languages:
Panjabi (Punjabi) – 22.37 per cent
Tagalog (Pilipino, Filipino) – 5.38 per cent
Vietnamese – 3.16 per cent


B.C. election 2017: Surrey-Cloverdale riding

Traditionally very safe BC Liberal territory.

In 2013: BC Liberal Stephanie Cadieux was elected by a 2-to-1 margin, 60 per cent to 28 per cent.

In 2009: BC Liberal Kevin Falcon won this riding for the third straight election, defeating the NDP’s Deborah Payment by over 7,000 votes, 63-30 per cent.

HangZhou Night Net

History & Geography: Created in 1991, Surrey-Cloverdale has elected the Liberals in all five elections it has been contested. It is bordered by 196th Street, 80th Avenue, 176th Street, 72nd Avenue, 152nd Street, and Highway 99.


Liberals – Marvin Hunt: The sitting MLA for Surrey-Panorama was first elected to Surrey City Council in 1988, and served until 2013.

NDP – Rebecca Smith: Past VP of the NDP Surrey-Cloverdale riding association, Smith is the former executive director for the B.C. Psychological Association and worked for “A GP For Me”, the province-wide initiative to get more people family physicians.

Greens – Aleksandra Muniak: A small business owner and long-time resident of Cloverdale.

Libertarian Party – Peter Poelstra: The Libertarian party is running 30 candidates, four times as many as in 2013. They have been running candidates in B.C. since 1986, but have never come close to winning a seat.

2017 Stats: Surrey-Cloverdale

Population (2014): 59,649 (23rd)
Population Deviation from Average: 12.3 per cent
Area: 55 sq km (58th)
Pop Density: 1,084.5 (30th)
Average Age: 37.3 years (82nd)
English as Second Language: 28.96 per cent(34th)

Top 3 Second Languages:
Panjabi (Punjabi) – 8.94 per cent
Tagalog (Pilipino, Filipino) – 2.38 per cent
Korean – 2.24 per cent