City Creates More Space for Evacuees
City of Prince George workers prepare 180 more beds in the gymnasium at Prince George Secondary School – video 250News
Prince George, B.C. – The City of Prince George has made another 180 beds available for evacuees affected by wildfires in the Cariboo.
The beds were set up in the gymnasium at Prince George Secondary School earlier this afternoon.
It brings the total number of beds to 470 in Prince George. That includes beds at the College of New Caledonia and at the Northern Sport Centre at UNBC.
(But it’s not counting the people billeted at private residences in town.) To claim a spot evacuees must first register at the City’s Emergency Reception Centre at CNC (3330 22 Ave.).
Prince George Mayor Lyn Hall told 250News this afternoon he’s been pleased with how the operation has gone so far.
“Yes, I’m pleased. Fortunately, our intake early on of evacuees was not large, so it gave us an opportunity to get rolling and get things really established and get a good flow to the process.”
He added the City is ready to welcome more evacuees should the situation warrant it.
“When we originally started this there was talk of us looking at 6 or 7,000 people ending up here in Prince George. So, we’ve got other locations that we can move to. We can look at going to other schools, the Civic Centre. We’re got a lot of choices to tackle this.”
Another option (though not affiliated with the City of Prince George’s operations) is the Royal Canadian Legion where they’ve created space for 20 beds at its downtown location (1116 Sixth Avenue).
“We want to help anybody who needs us. We have cots upstairs. We’re trying to set it up so families have some privacy,” says John Scott, vice-president of the Legion’s BC-Yukon command.
“It’ll be open 24 hours and we’ll be offering free food. Folks can even watch TV or shoot some pool.”
He says they could also use some more pillows, blankets and volunteers. Anyone wanting to help can call the Legion at 250-562-1292.
Someone posted about first Nations not opening up for evacuees and the post got deleted. Whoever you are (who is first Nations themself), I have to agree with your post. Let’s hope they are helping out as well as the City of PG is doing.
Judging from my friends, First Nations people are greatly concerned for the evacuees. Some of them have devoted considerable time volunteering and the Facebook pages of both individuals and groups are filled with posts about the fires and the needs of the evacuees. I don’t really see how you expect First Nations to help as organizations. For evacuees coming from the fire zone around Williams Lake and Quesnel, nearly all of the First Nations are more remote than Prince George. Do you think that it would be helpful for Saik’uz, Nak’azdli, or McLeod Lake to offer housing for evacuees? The only band close to PG is Lheidli T’enneh, and both of their main reserves are inconveniently far out of town. In any case, the principal need for the evacuees is housing. Lheidli T’enneh does not have any large building like the Northern Sports Centre suitable for housing large numbers of evacuees. I suppose that the Friendship Centre could house some people in its event room, but it isn’t as large or suitable as the Sports Centre. What exactly do you think First Nations should be doing?
What can they do? How about :
– support groups for displaced first nations
– the Native Friendship Centre could have a message for the incoming natives. They have nothing up on their website
– Band communication : Work with bands in outlying areas to do head counts, and get information out to them. I know for a fact the remote reserves have no idea how impacted the areas around Williams Lake are. They are in the dark 100% and have no clue what to do. They turn to their leaders, and they have no information from the PGNFC. If all the evacuees are coming to PG, why aren’t they communicating with them?
– open up Lheidli T’enneh Memorial Park for displaced people with RV’s. Why not offer up our land for the evacuees that have RV’s?
How about stepping up in the community when disaster strikes, instead of remaining silent? I see the Sikh community stepping up, I saw Jehova’s Witnesses delivering supplies to the CNC.. I see my people doing nothing, and enough is enough.
That was me. Not even natives can post negative things towards natives… its like a protected species. You can post bad things about most races, but not natives.
I thought my point was well thought out, but oh well. Look at the native friendship center, not a peep on their website even under the disaster icon. NOTHING.
I concur with your view here. I am not against first Nations bit against certain aspects of what’s happening. Like I am against white people (which I am) certain actions.
Lots of First Nations volunteering at CNC. Leadership might not be involved but that’s ok. This is a community effort and we are all work together in times like this. No need for politics now.
Should be expecting 20,000 IMO if Williams Lake gets evacuated. 12,000 from the city itself, and another 8000 in the surrounding area, as well as the evacuees already there.
Kamloops Indian Band has opened up its pow-wow grounds, which have bathrooms with showers, for evacuees and is providing food on the site.
Good to see some first Nations coming to help. Lets hope everyone puts there effort to help everyone affected and show the true spirit of Northern BC.
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