FOLLOWING the revelation that health authorities fought to conceal hospital COVID-19 outbreak records from Freedom of Information (FOI) requests, the BC Liberals on Friday called on Premier John Horgan and the NDP to finally be honest with British Columbians and release data and information that the public is entitled to.
“It shouldn’t take a freedom of information request for British Columbians to find out important information about COVID-19 that could help shape people’s behaviour when it comes to seeking medical attention or getting vaccinated,” said MLA Shirley Bond, Interim Leader of the Official Opposition. “John Horgan stood up and said B.C. was as transparent as any jurisdiction in North America, that statement couldn’t be further from the truth. Time and time again during this pandemic, B.C. has lagged well behind other provinces in COVID-19 data transparency and the consequence has been an ongoing erosion of public trust.”
The BC Liberals said that of the many instances of the NDP eroding public trust, this government:
* failed to release a report on COVID-19 in Long-Term Care homes;
* has failed to provide information about school ventilation and school outbreak notifications to parents;
* has fought disclosure of data surrounding COVID-19 outbreaks in B.C. hospitals;
* has failed to provide case counts and hospitalization data at the local level; and
* has still failed to provide the true hospitalization and ICU numbers, despite promising to do so weeks ago.
“John Horgan needs to communicate openly, trust British Columbians, and give them the data they are entitled to. People need to be able to trust that their government is being honest and transparent with information and providing data related to critical issues like the management of a global pandemic,” said Bond.
“The NDP’s lack of willingness to provide information is in direct contradiction to the commitments that John Horgan made. British Columbians deserve better from the Premier and his government. People expect and deserve the truth.”