Mental health suffering in our care homes

Dear Editor:

Why are we treating our relatives in long-term care like prisoners?

Finally, after months of lockdown, residents can have family and friends visit them again. But with restrictions, of course.

We have to “protect them” from the outside world. That means only one designated visitor. If that designated visitor is your spouse — your children, siblings, friends and other family members are not allowed. And by appointment only and for a mere 30 minutes.

Make sure the rules are adhered to. No hugs, kisses, touching allowed. Smiling is allowed, but who can see that when your smile is covered up by a mask?

If that is not enough, they cannot go to the park and enjoy the sunshine or go for an ice cream. Apparently, virus particles are floating in the air. Meals with fellow residents are allowed, yet no bingo, happy hour or live entertainment.

Why do we expect our family and fellow citizens to live like that? People in prison get better treatment.

It seems the elderly are the prisoners during this pandemic. We need to show some compassion. Nobody deserves a life like that, deprived of the joys of everyday life including social interaction and physical contact.

Everybody needs something to look forward to. The rules and regulations are all in the name of safety, but are they really? The government is not looking at the whole picture, which is mental health and a little bit of happiness. Wake up, everyone – things are not as they appear.

Lucia Struk, Kelowna

Conservatives left in the cold by election call

Dear Editor:

According to Section 23 of the British Columbia Constitution Act, the next provincial election should take place Oct. 16, 2021.

When Premier John Horgan called this election, he defied the Constitution and denied every single British Columbian a fair chance to get ready for that election, regardless of how they may have wanted to participate, as voters or candidates.

While the opposition parties have the advantage of already having experienced Members in the Legislature, other parties — like the BC Conservative Party — are looking at a cold start.

Last provincial election, the Conservatives had about 12% of the popular vote.

This election they are not even on the map. Where will all those votes go?

What happened to their rights?

Our politicians want a two-party system forever, to guarantee they will always have the power to rule, not govern.

When will this madness stop?

Andy Thomsen, Kelowna

Editor’s Note: The BC Conservatives garnered 10.4% of the vote in Kelowna-area ridings only

during the last provincial election.

O’Toole wasn’t stealing speech, he shared it

Dear Editor:

I just returned from a game of golf. Golf Is a wonderful game that requires honesty and ethical behavior in self-reporting scores and penalties for play. They say that to judge a person you should look at their behaviour on the golf course.

Unfortunately, recently the editors of this newspaper have failed the honesty and integrity test and would not make good golf buddies.

Last week, Penticton Herald editor James Miller tried to claim that Erin O’Toole was a cheat because some of his speech mirrored that of Peter MacKay.

He completely missed the point. In the Conservative party, we all act as a team.  That Erin would build on good policies espoused by Peter after the leadership was decided shows his ability to consult and build a great inclusive party.

I would strongly suggest that Peter was asked if his words could be paraphrased and I am sure Peter welcomed the chance to be heard and respected.

So, instead of trying to create diversion he has demonstrated that the Conservatives are inclusive.

Let’s move on to the provincial election.  We all know that The Daily Courier and Penticton Herald have been trying to get the Okanagan to vote left wing for years.  But journalists are supposed to be neutral and report the news in an impartial manner. Ha! Say I!

This is a plea to the editorial staff of this newspaper, instead of putting only the “sayings of the day from Premier Horgan” on the front page, and pictures of the NDP and Green Candidates on every page, perhaps they should back off a little and report news fairly and without bias.

This is an incredibly rare request, for sure, but isn’t it time to actually be journalists instead of just being shills of the NDP and Greens?

So please – be journalists without bias or, in our second official language, journalistes sans parti pris.

In parting – thank you ex-prime minister Stephen Harper for being a role model for all future prime ministers. Unfortunately, the current incumbent doesn’t have a clue. I would golf with Harper in a heartbeat.

Alan Nichols, Kelowna

Tory critics miss point of speech

Dear Editor:

Public health concerns explain the Throne speech’s focus. The pandemic certainly tests our resilience, our leaders and our economic system and why the Throne speech asks “do all Canadians move forward or do we let people be left behind?” The continued focus on covid-19 has left the Conservatives blaming Liberals for every hic-up in aid delivery.

Conservatives see a dark Canada, where Canadians do not feel safe. Party Leader Erin O’Toole warns against what he calls Liberal social experiments, instead of plain, old simple jobs. He attacked Justin Trudeau’s credibility and spoke about small business, but said nothing about the announced additional $600 million to help small and medium businesses survive the lockdown. O’Toole then spoke about the resource sector and China, but said nothing about child care, long term senior’s care, or about the new financial support for the unemployed. Nor did he mention climate.

There is an appearance that O’Toole scampers behind Trump, blaming the WHO, blaming China, too much like a faithful lap dog. If the Conservatives had been in power, their preponderance towards everything Trump would’ve made Canada’s early days of the pandemic a disaster.

Liberals argue Canadians will feel more stable and secure if they have better access to child care, better care for the elderly, an improved EI system and if the country is moving towards reducing its emissions and transitioning to a low-carbon economy.

For Liberals, these are the foundational elements of a better future for Canadians.

Jon Peter Christoff, West Kelowna

Editor’s Note: According to Canadian Press on the O’Toole/MacKay letter, “Conservative party spokesman Cory Hann says human error is to blame: a contractor hired to write the note drafted one version in the event MacKay won the contest, and one for an O’Toole victory. Hann says content from the MacKay letter was inadvertently left in when the final version was put together.” The Conservative party is reviewing the contract with the consultant involved.