My name is Wendy Eeckhout and I would like to add my name to the submissions to BC Electoral Boundaries Commission for Fraser-Nicola. I would encourage the commission to retain Hope within the Fraser-Nicola Electoral Region consistent with the recommendations made by the Commission. Hope has more in common with Merritt and other small communities within the riding than it does with Chilliwack just as Merritt has more in common with the Hope and communities within the riding than it does with Kamloops. The citizens of Hope will have more voice in Fraser-Nicola than they would have in a riding that has a city such as Chilliwack.
Further as a past Constituency Assistant to a previous BC government I worked with and for citizens, businesses, community organizations, towns and city councils, and First Nations communities throughout what was the Yale-Lillooet riding. I travelled both with the MLA (Harry Lali) and also on his behalf to meet with the aforementioned groups and individuals. I know that we worked hard to ensure that all within the riding were well represented. I also know that several of the First Nations peoples along the Fraser Canyon share both language and culture with one another and that their voices will be diminished if cut off from one another by the removal of Hope and adjacent communities from what is now the Fraser-Nicola Electoral District.
I am also aware that by keeping Hope in the riding as per the Commission’s recommendations that Princeton will thereby be removed from the Electoral District. I believe that Princeton can be placed in a suitable electoral district nearby its locale. That area has many small communities that share much in common with Princeton.
Lastly I would ask that the Commission consider returning the name of our riding back to Yale-Lillooet.
Thank you for your consideration,