Coquitlam. As a Coquitlam city councillor, I truly care about those in our community – especially those who are disadvantaged. Having an active, healthy lifestyle and social inclusion are two very important parts of my life, but unfortunately for someone living on $610/month, it’s virtually impossible. Metro Vancouver has the highest cost of living in the country, yet our welfare rates haven’t been increased in almost a decade. From an economic standpoint, I truly believe that raising the rates is a smart and compassionate investment in the future of our province and will deliver a great return on the investment. On a human level, I think it’s criminal to expect someone to live on $18 a week for food in this part of the country. I hope to draw as much attention as possible to this issue so that it can play a part in the upcoming provincial election and we can finally see the rates increased.