2019 Federal ElectionsNews NDP incumbent Gord Johns focusing on climate change, opioid and housing crisis SHARE ON: Jon Gauthier, staff Monday, Sep. 16th, 2019 Courtenay-Alberni MP Gord Johns (supplied by Johns' office) NDP candidate Gord Johns is looking to get re-elected in Courtenay-Alberni. He’s one of five candidates in the riding. If re-elected the incumbent says he will be tackling one of the biggest issues for Canadians; climate change and global warming. “We need ambitious greenhouse gas emissions that have legislative targets that will help stabilize the global temperature rise to one point five degrees celsius,” said Johns. He also added that having government environmental caps would make sure the country meets international climate goals. “We need to invest rapidly in green infrastructure and make sure that we’re legislating hard caps and hard targets that have to be met so that we can do our part in making sure that we meet the climate goals that have been set out by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.” “I’m committed to doing the hard work and continue to pressure the government to make climate change and dealing with climate change a priority.” Another one of the priorities for the NDP Johns says, is to introduce a national PharmaCare program. “It’s the NDP that for a long time been calling for a universal PharmaCare program that everybody can access. People shouldn’t have to make a choice whether they’re going to put food on the table or pay their rent or fill their prescriptions.” He says not only would the program be good for all Canadians, but it would save money if introduced. “It saves the healthcare system a lot of money when people get the medicine that they need and it’s preventative instead of waiting until they’re sick.” When it comes to protecting Canada’s coastlines Johns says it’s important to “get marine protections in place, fight for a clean ocean, and (introduce) policies and regulations that will ensure that we eliminate and reduce the amount of plastics that are going into our oceans.” British Columbia faces a large income gap and Johns says his constituents can expect “someone who is on their side that’s fighting for tax fairness for economic, social, and environmental justice.” To do that, Johns wants to end tax loopholes. “We need to end tax loopholes for CEO’s. We need to end tax loopholes that allow people to shovel their money outside of the country where they are not paying their fair share of taxes, ” Johns said. “Instead, that’s falling on the backs of everyday Canadians. We’re going to make sure the super-rich and those that can afford it, pay a little more and make sure that they’re not avoiding paying taxes like everyday legitimate Canadians. We need to make sure the large corporations and the super-rich are paying their fair share.” Johns also says he also wants to address the housing crisis in the riding. “We know in Courtenay-Alberni we hear, housing, housing, housing, it’s real.” “Our plan is to build 500,000 units over the next decade. That’s to make up for 25 years of Conservatives and Liberal governments not doing their part, not building affordable housing when it was needed and leaving it to the private sector which hasn’t delivered when it comes to affordable and attainable housing in our communities.” He also wants to change the way the government looks at the opioid crisis. “We need to listen to our medical health officers and take a science and evidence-based approach, a health-based approach to tackling this issue,” said Johns. Johns adds that the federal government needs to do more in order to address the opioid epidemic. “We need the federal government to really step up its game and turn the corner and face this challenge head-on so that we can help those people who are living with mental health and addictions.” His opponents are Conservative Byron Horner, Liberal Jonah Gowans, and the Green Party’s Sean Wood, along with the People’s Party of Canada representative Troy Whitley. Election day is October 21st.