• Capital Daily
  • Posts
  • Tues. May 9 - BC nurses call for systemic changes

Tues. May 9 - BC nurses call for systemic changes

Plus: Audit of BC Housing finds misconduct

Capital Daily Logo


Belfry Theatre

Good morning !

This week, May 8-14, marks national nursing week in Canada. The theme this year is “our nurses, our future”—highlighting the many roles nurses play in a patient’s health-care journey. UVic is also holding nursing week events, details can be found here.

With nursing in mind, our main story dives into some of the challenges facing nurses today, and particularly what has caused the acute shortage of nurses in BC, and how to fix it.

The Capital Daily Team

BC is pushing to add thousands more nurses. But those in the field say it needs major change first

Photo: Shutterstock

BC is now years into an acute shortage of nurses as part of the broader crisis in an overwhelmed health system. The province took steps this year to fast-track foreign nurses and incentivize retired nurses to return, while UVic is looking to expand its nursing program.

But nurses and nurse educators say the problem in the field goes beyond—and much further back than—departures from pandemic burnout. They say shortages have been building for years, and that a lack of mentorship and supports has been an issue for decades.

With changes underway to add nurses, we look at the other side of the equation: how to keep them.

Capital Bulletin

🌤️ Today’s weather: Mostly sunny. High 15C / Low 8C

🚨 Emergency Preparedness Week: From May 7 to 13 learn tips on how to plan for emergencies.

🔎 Missing man: Police seek Joseph Alexander Smith, 42, who was last seen May 2 in Duncan. [CTV]


Victoria man charged with stealing and sinking boat in US after allegedly leaving dead fish at Goonies home

Photo: USCGPacificNorthwest / Twitter

Jericho Wolf Labonte has now been charged with theft, mischief, and reckless endangerment, KOMO News reports, after allegedly stealing and capsizing a boat in Oregon waters on Feb. 3. Videos by the US Coast Guard showed the dramatic rescue in the rough waters near the mouth of the Columbia River. The boat was upended by strong waves, but the rescue swimmer clinging to it was able to recover the person inside.

The local is also believed to be the same man who on Feb. 1 visited the well-known house from The Goonies (1985) in Astoria to throw a dead fish on the porch and dance around. Astoria Police Chief Stacy Kelly told CBC that the suspect had “some sort of infatuation” with the film and did its famous “Hey you guys!” line when arrested. The house had been bought just weeks earlier for $2.1M by a Goonies fanatic who told FOX 12 Oregon he wanted other fans to come by and celebrate it “as long as they’re respectful to the property.”

Labonte had also been wanted by VicPD in January for warrants including mischief and harassment.


BC Housing forensic audit found conflict of interest between CEO and wife

Photo: BC Housing

The forensic audit confirmed that mismanagement surrounding conflicts of interest took place between the former CEO, Shayne Ramsay, and his wife Janice Abbott, the CEO of Atira Women's Resource Society.

Since 2018, Atira has received $120M from BC Housing to finance housing and social services programs. Per conflict of interest protocols, Ramsay was not to be involved in funding discussions for Atira. But former employees claimed that he urged them to approve funding for Atira, and that those who raised concerns were fired or pushed out. BC Premier David Eby condemned this as “profoundly concerning” in parliament Monday morning.

The forensic investigation began in July 2022 after an external review from March 2021 brought to light issues in financial oversight. By September 2022, Ramsay resigned as CEO; Vincent Tong took over as interim CEO, becoming permanent in April.

20 recommendations made

While the investigation did not find evidence that funding was used for anything other than its intended purpose, the conflict of interest protocols needed serious revamping. External consultants Ernst and Young identified 20 recommendations to bolster financial oversight and ensure better accountability of public funding for housing.

Steps already taken in response include a new anonymous employee “whistleblower” hotline, a government representative on BC Housing’s board, and enhanced measures for the budget and financial review process.

There will also be further investigations into Atira, including a full review of financial transactions, physical building inspections, and a block on any new funding until the review is complete. Atira operates housing projects in the Lower Mainland and the Aerie childcare centre in Langford.


Old Stock: A Refugee Love Story, the award-winning musical, closes Sunday

Old Stock: A Refugee Love Story is a tender and delicate tale woven inside a high-energy concert led by the boisterous international Klezmer sensation, Ben Caplan. This musical played for one week during the Belfry's 2019 SPARK Festival, and that was simply not enough for a show as astounding as this!

“That was the best thing I’ve ever seen, hands down!”

A truly original, captivating, wise, and glorious exploration of human resilience and survival. Inspired by the true story of Hannah Moscovitch’s great-grandparents, this triumphant musical has toured internationally, garnering awards across Canada, Australia, and the UK.

Old Stock: A Refugee Love Story closes on Sunday. Limited pay-what-you-want tickets available.

Capital Picks

🔄 Levidrome: Which two words spell each other backwards and are described by this clue: she/they/, right? Answer on Facebook or Twitter and tag #levidrome and #capitaldaily. Last time: Dug in a Canuck tux = mined / denim

💻 Tired of sneaky internet providers with confusing contracts and surprise price hikes? oxio's got your back with transparent pricing, no contracts, and a free month using code: CAPITALDAILY.*

🪕 Dave Harris and Friends: The Loft hosts Harris, Al Pease, and Clark Brendon. Show 5pm / cover voluntary.

*Sponsored Listing

In Other News

⛪ Vatican to return Indigenous artifacts
Island Indigenous leaders and artists responded last week to the commitment from Pope Francis, who cited the Seventh Commandment that “you shall not steal.” This comes a month after Francis renounced the Doctrine of Discovery (which for centuries legitimized taking Indigenous land) in a move First Nations on the Island and elsewhere had long called for. Ongoing local repatriation work at RBCM recently included a Nuxalk totem pole’s return. [Global News]

✈️ New autism resource kit available at Victoria International Airport
The resource kit, which aims to increase accessibility, is now available for all travellers flying out of YYJ. Noise-cancelling headphones and sensory items are included in the kit. [Victoria News]

🏆 UVic golf places first and second at CAC Championships
The Vikes were the only men’s team to shoot under-par, with an overall scorecard of 291, 286, 287. The women placed second with a scorecard of 312, 308. Last year both teams won gold in the mainly US-based conference. Their men’s team secured automatic entry into the NAIA Men’s Golf Championships. [Vikes]


Unlock your peak performance

Measure your cardiovascular fitness with VO2 Max. Optimize your training and improve your endurance.

In Case You Missed It

🚑 Monday’s headlines: Paramedic problems persist in rural communities. Drone catches Island avalanche. History Mystery. Red Dress Day. [May 8 newsletter]

🏡 Recently sold single family homes: View all the recently sold homes in Victoria. View the sale prices, photos, and more.*

🍔 LEGO-themed burger pop-up announced: Brick Burger will sell LEGO- shaped burgers in James Bay from Oct. 7 to 8. [Tickets]

🐾 Have you had to give up a pet to rent a home? If so, please email [email protected] for an upcoming article on pet policies in Victoria’s tight housing market.

*Sponsored Listing

Reach 50,000+ local readers.
Advertise in Capital Daily.

Capital Daily is a member of the Trust Project. 
Learn more about our labels and best practices.
Meet our team of journalists.