Opinion » Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor for the week of May 10

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Give your Nesters points to Zero Ceiling

We all know that Whistler is a unique and inspiring place to live. The mountains that brought many of us here always bring joy, opportunity and peace to our lives. That's why Zero Ceiling has based its programs for homeless young people here for over 20 years.

We believe that the people we serve—young people from the Sea to Sky corridor and Lower Mainland who have experienced homelessness—deserve to experience this rich mountain life as much as we do.

When our Work 2 Live participants move here for twelve months, they do so hoping to build an independent, healthier life for themselves.Nonetheless, over those twenty years it's become increasingly difficult to live a healthy life here, as the cost of living has risen across the board. For our participants, who often arrive here with nothing, often coming from a youth shelter, sometimes estranged from family, it can be even more challenging. One of the first things we must address is making sure they get enough healthy food on a daily basis.For years, Bruce Stewart, Nesters Market, and Nesters customers, have been a lifeline in this regard. Thanks to ongoing generous donations of Nesters' points, we have been able to provide participants with gift cards to purchase their weekly groceries.

Over the last year, this has added up to over 1,000 meals purchased and cooked by our participants. Throughout the program, we emphasize budgeting, cooking and healthy eating, so that when they graduate they take healthy habits with them.

We also share a family dinner once a week; a vital chance to share food and connect.

Nesters Market goes above and beyond for us, often donating food for special occasions like Christmas dinner, and other events throughout the year.This month, more young people will join our Work 2 Live program, eager to begin building a new life for themselves.

Unfortunately, right now we are running low on Nesters points, making it difficult for us to provide healthy food for these young people week in, week out. So, we're asking for a little support from the fantastic Whistler community. For the entire month of May, we will be running a Points Drive at Nesters.

If you want to give a little back, and support the wonderful young people in our programs, please consider donating your points. All you need to do is ask the cashier at any register to donate your points to Zero Ceiling.

You will be helping driven, hard-working young people to transform their lives. We—and they—are hugely grateful as always.

Lizi McLoughlin
Zero Ceiling Society of Canada

Gouging the young

There are many reasons for the housing crisis here in Whistler.

What I find most distressing are the people taking advantage and charging our young people anywhere from $600 to $900 dollars to share a bedroom.

If they're sharing, they are the ones who deserve a break.

I don't know how folks sleep at night taking that much money from young people.

John Lee
Whistler

Walking for a cause

A big shout out and huge heart felt thanks to the amazing Whistler community and visitors for your generosity and the many wonderful ways you helped in contributing and supporting the inaugural Walk for Alzheimer's making it such a huge success.

Next year, we will be looking to grow from this base and continue to be part of the annual provincial and country-wide event.Thanks to many who gave their help and support in different ways, giving back and making a difference for all those in our community, and in doing so helped the Alzheimer Society of B.C. raise over $11,000. These are much-needed funds to help provide support for the ever-increasing number of people touched by dementia.Everyone in our community knows someone with dementia. It is very obvious we need more education and understanding around the disease to help remove the stigma and discrimination that seems to be ever constant with Alzheimer's.

We need stronger advocates, better care for all the stages of people on the Alzheimer journey, and better care for those that have no choice but to follow. And there is a strong need to find a cure.

The Alzheimer Society of B.C. strives to do all this and more on a daily basis, but cannot succeed without the help and support of the hundreds of volunteers throughout all the communities of this province.Even the weather cooperated for the 100-plus walkers on May 6 (I said my prayers), and those who were unable to walk generously raised or donated money or products.

And, of course, the many hard-working volunteers were so important helping to make this a super-fun and most enjoyable event. The five kilometre-plus course was a perfect showcase of the beauty of nature to be found in Whistler.  

My sincerest appreciation to Our Lady of the Mountains Catholic Church, for kindly providing the base for the start and finish of our walk (and to the many people and businesses that helped make this a successful event.)

You are all so very much appreciated.    Hope to see you all next year. 

Erika Durlacher and family
Whistler

Artificial turf field welcomed

I would like to applaud the Resort Municipality of Whistler staff for its diligent research into the options for providing the community with additional and much-needed field space, and the engagement of the community and the Recreation & Leisure Advisory Committee (RLAC) in the final decision on the artificial turf field.

Having been involved with the RLAC committee past and present, and now having the project reaffirmed by the new RLAC committee proves that sometimes there does need to be a balanced approach for community amenities.

I acknowledge that this facility may not be the most desirable for some people based on the materials proposed. But like most activities we do, and facilities we use for sport or recreation in this region, there is an environmental footprint left.

As a community, I believe we should be more focused on the elimination of single-use plastic than on an amenity that will be used for thousands of hours by thousands of people before it comes to the end of its life and is recycled.

The addition of an all-weather turf field in the community will extend the season, increase playing time and will greatly enhance the development of field sports in our community.

I anticipate the greatest benefits from this facility will be for our youth at the "active start" and "fundamentals" stages of their development.

The community will now have a facility that is not impacted by the unpredictable spring and fall weather in Whistler, and the new field will provide additional opportunity for children to be involved in field sports that are inclusive and affordable.

Whistler Sport Legacies is 100 per cent in support of the turf field proposal, and looks forward to partnering with the RMOW to grow participation in field sports at all levels when this facility is completed in the fall of this year.

Roger Soane
President and CEO
Whistler Sport Legacies

WSS grad dance thanks

Raising our teens to be contributing and valuable members of our community is clearly on track.

On May 2, the grad class of 2018 at Whistler Secondary School hosted an amazing dance for Grades 8 through 12, and by all accounts it was the best school-based party in a long time.

The dance was a fundraising event for the grad class with the funds going to their scholarship legacy, a fund legacy for the school and their upcoming prom.

It would not have been possible without the support of Whistler Fire Rescue Services and the RCMP, which provided members to help oversee the dance, our many talented parent volunteers, the financial support of the Parent Advisory Council and our school support and administration staff champions.

We are already looking forward to hosting another.

Kerri Fletcher, and Stephanie McHugh,
PAC Dance Committee and the WSS Grad 2018 Dance Committee

A chipper day!

A big thank you to the Resort Municipality of Whistler (RMOW) for the FireSmart community chipper days initiative.

We initially thought they were offering free French fries, but it turned out to be much better—free wood chipping services!

It took us three solid days to hack back the forest, haul the debris up to the side of the road and stack it for chipping. But it was well worth the effort—the yard looks much better and safer to boot. Plus, instead of gaining weight by gobbling fries, we probably lost weight!

FireSmart coordinator Scott Rogers and his crew had our debris pile chipped and the area swept clean within 20 minutes. Very impressive.We're also very appreciative of the RMOW's Nesters Depot free yard waste drop off initiative. In addition to hauling out a mountain of debris for chipping, we collected 24 big bags of yard waste and dropped those off at the Nesters recycling station.

Thanks also to our neighbour George for letting us use his truck to haul the bags to Nesters—otherwise we'd still be shuttling back and forth in our little car.

Blake and Winnie Wiggs
Whistler

Paying hommage

A brief note of thanks to Isobel MacLaurin and belatedly to Don, for enriching our community and the lives of so many in Whistler.

Their commitment to our community was, and is extensive, allowing us to reap the benefits of their efforts for many decades to come.

Many thanks to Mo Douglas and her team at Arts Whistler for organizing the Don and Isobel events (currently running until June 10. More information is available at https://artswhistler.com/calendar).

These events provide us with opportunities to pay homage to the Maclaurins and to learn how each of us, in our own way, can contribute to the betterment of our community.

Here's hoping that each citizen of Whistler will take a cue from the MacLaurins and play their part in enhancing the quality of life of all in Whistler.

Izzy continues to imbue us with her humour and her zest for living.

Keith Fernandes
Whistler

Ban music speakers on the mountains 

I want an immediate ban for next season.

I am enraged by inconsiderate users of the mountains that bring radios and speakers playing gangster beats, rap or rock to ski and ride. It is positively insulting and shows quite a lack of respect for the people around them.

These musical wizards have no regard for anyone else's peaceful use and enjoyment of the mountain pumping out their loud bass in lines and on the chairlift. It's a public place of use and enjoyment. If you want to play music, do it in your own home, your own patio, your own boat. 

This needs to be a very adamant and clear policy of the mountains.

It needs to be enforced immediately and lifties and other mountain personnel need to be able to confiscate the speakers along with passes. 

Please put this on the waiver and rules of the mountain—a list of user responsibilities and conduct must be checked off agreeing to abide by policies and if the person will not do this then confiscate the pass.

This goes for other infractions on the mountains as well: smoking, swearing, reckless skiing and boarding, speeding in slow zones. Confiscate the pass, put the offenders into "snow-school rehab."

We go to the mountains to enjoy peace, serenity, the beauty of the mountains and to connect with one another through the lost art of quality time and talking. Listening to heavy metal death rock is not what we signed up for and infuriating to stand next to in a lineup.  

For regular people, it is fairly irritating. As someone with a disability of sensory issues, I cannot tolerate this. 

Whistler Blackcomb hosts children and their families through adaptive snow sports. It's a big deal if you have a child that freaks out in environments over and beyond what the family has already calculated. It is not fair. It is enough to ruin my day or someone's kid's day who simply has noise sensitivities. 

It's not up to me to wear noise cancelling headphones, plus they don't fit under helmets, and without wearing a helmet, a safety issue.

If Vail Resorts will not put in place a policy to enforce this, I will take it into my own hands. I go to ski to try to calm my nerves and issues, not exacerbate them.  

Also, this is not a complaint against Vail Resorts—I actually respect Vail Resorts for having to deal with a challenging year and making some changes.

But I'm asking Vail Resorts to take action and do something about it. 

Whose right is it anyway to think their musical taste is preferred by all?

Julia Wong
Vancouver

Plant and bake sale thanks

A huge thank you to everyone who came out to support our annual plant and bake sale for the Women's Institute!

The funds we raise stay in our community so you are helping us to help youth teams, our local food bank, Pemberton Secondary Bursary, etc.

I would also like to thank members of the community who came by with donations of plants and stayed to help us set up and sell.

We would also like to acknowledge our husbands who support us in every way they can from producing plants to the grunt work of transporting and setting up.

We surpassed our expectations in a very short time and sold out even sooner than usual.

Linda Welsh
Pemberton Women's Institute

More like Zermatt

In Pique's "Letters to the Editor" for the week of May 3, Hoda Ghamrawy from Nelson stated that if Whistler council proceeded with the artificial turf field then it would be a "no brainer" to choose Zermatt as a more environmentally conscious destination over Whistler because of all the "active toxins" she believes an artificial turf includes.

Ghamrawy appears not to be aware that Zermatt actually does have an artificial turf field. The Ottmar Hitzfeld Stadium is recognized as the "highest football pitch in all of Europe." 

If Ghamrawy, and others, believe that we should follow Zermatt's lead, then perhaps continuing the artificial turf project here in Whistler is the right decision. 

David Arlington
Whistler

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