Surrey man in life threatening condition after being struck by car

A pedestrian is in life threatening condition after being hit by a car in the 7000 block of 138 Street in Surrey Sunday night.

Surrey RCMP say that the vehicle was driving northbound along 138 Street when it struck a pedestrian at the corner of 138 Street and 70 Avenue. The victim was taken to a local hospital with critical injuries.

Police say that the driver remained on scene and is cooperating with police.

Anyone who witnessed this incident or has further information is asked to call the Surrey RCMP at 604-599-0502 or Crime Stoppers, if they wish to remain anonymous, at 1-800-222-8477 or www.solvecrime.ca, quoting file number 2017-39774.

Surreyleader

IHIT investigating after early morning stabbing – Charge Approval against Gurtarn “Tarn” SANDHU

Surrey: On Sunday March 26, 2017 just after 6:00 a.m. the Surrey RCMP responded to a report of a stabbing in the 17000 block of 57th Avenue.  When police arrived, a male victim was located inside the residence suffering wounds received from an edged weapon.  The male victim was transported to hospital, but despite all medical efforts the male victim died as a result of his injuries.  A male suspect was located at the scene by police, and was taken into custody.

As this was quickly deemed a homicide, the Integrated Homicide Investigation Team (IHIT) has taken conduct.  IHIT is working closely with the Surrey RCMP, the Integrated Forensic Identification Section, and the B.C. Coroner’s Service to gather and review evidence.

The investigation remains on-going, however, investigators have secured a homicide related charge against the male suspect, identified as 27-year-old Gurtarn “Tarn” SANDHU.  Mr. Sandhu has been charged with Manslaughter in the death of the male victim identified as 36-year-old, Jaspreet “Jesse” DHALIWAL.  Mr. Sandhu is scheduled to appear in court later this afternoon.

“This altercation occurred between parties known to each other, and was not random.”  Cpl. Meghan FOSTER of IHIT says, “This matter is now before the courts, and limited information can be provided as the court process will be honoured.”

 

Victim of fatal shooting in Abbotsford was associate of two men previously gunned down

  • by Vikki Hopes – Abbotsford News

The Abbotsford News has learned that the victim of the fatal shooting Friday afternoon on Chase Street is Jaskarn Lally, an associate of two Abbotsford men previously gunned down in gang-related killings.

The shooting took place at about 4:30 p.m. at a home in the 3500 block of Chase Street.

Sgt. Judy Bird said police were called to a residence, where they located a 20-year-old man suffering from gunshot wounds. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

Bird said the incident appears to be targeted.

The investigation is still in its early stages and is being transitioned to the Integrated Homicide Investigation Team (IHIT).

Lally was previously named in civil court documents that detailed the fatal shooting of Harwin Baringh, 18, in October 2014 on Sparrow Drive.

The documents stated that Baringh was a member of the “Chahil crime group” at the time.

He was in his vehicle with a passenger, when they stopped at the side of the road. A second vehicle, occupied by his associates Lally and Navdeep Sidhu, pulled up beside them, and the two groups had a conversation.

Surveillance cameras later captured those two vehicles being blocked in the road by two other cars, and then gunshots being exchanged among occupants of the four vehicles, according to the court documents.

Three cars fled the scene, but Baringh’s Jeep remained, and he was found dead, slumped over in the driver’s seat. To date, nobody has been charged in his death.

The province’s civil forfeiture office successfully sued to seize two of the vehicles involved in the incident, saying they had been used to “engage in a violent ongoing gang conflict” between the Chahil and Dhaliwal crime groups.

Navdeep Sidhu, 24, also faced a violent death more than two years after Baringh’s killing. He was one of two men found shot to death in a vehicle in Edmonton two months ago. (The other was Harman Mangat, 22, also tied to the gang conflict in Abbotsford.)

large funeral was held for Sidhu on Jan. 19 at the Fraser River Funeral Home in Abbotsford.

Lally had several charges before the courts, including for an incident that occurred in February 2015 in Dawson Creek.

He went to trial on seven firearms charges in relation to what police said was a gang-related shooting.

According to RCMP, a man was abducted, driven to a gravel pit and shot several times in the legs. The man survived and dragged himself to a road, where a motorist picked him up and dropped him at the hospital.

All the charges against co-accused Anthony Larsen were stayed, and a verdict had not yet been issued against Lally in the matter.

Also in Dawson Creek, Lally was convicted of mischief in relation to a March 2015 incident. He was sentenced to a $500 fine, according to the provincial court database.

He was also due to appear April 14 in Abbotsford provincial court to have a one-year peace bond (restraining order) placed against him. He had been charged with assault, but that charge was stayed in exchange for a $500 fine and a peace bond.

Lally’s killing is Abbotsford’s third murder of the year.

Satkar Sidhu, 23, was fatally shot Feb. 20 on Steelhead Court, and the body of Joseph Kellington, 24, of Mission was found March 3 on a property on Ross Road.Police have not released his cause of death.

Anyone with information about Lally’s killing is asked to contact the IHIT tip line at 1-877-551-4448 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.

350-plus new campsites throughout B.C. open for 2017 camping season

VANCOUVER – Visitors will soon have more camping opportunities throughout British Columbia with the completion of more than 350 new campsites in BC Parks and forestry recreation sites, in time for the upcoming camping season.

“Camping is an important way of life for Canadians to connect with family and friends. People come to experience British Columbia’s outdoors, to enjoy our world-class scenery and to camp in our provincial campground facilities. This campsite expansion allows us to address the increasing local regional demand for overnight access to the outdoors, while building a first class experience for our visitors.” says Joss Penny, chair, Camping and RVing BC Coalition.

This is the first phase of the 1,900 new campsites announced by Premier Christy Clark in November 2016 as part of the BC Parks Future Strategy, the Province’s commitment to public recreation opportunities. Campsite expansion is occurring in all regions of the province, and the majority will be where demand is greatest – in the Kootenays, Okanagan, the Lower Mainland and Vancouver Island.

“We’re pleased these new campsites will be open for the upcoming camping season, and these are only the first phase of campsites to come. We know people are passionate about BC Parks, and that demand for camping opportunities is high. This campsite expansion will help provide more camping opportunities where demand is greatest, which will improve the overall visitor experience, and help to support a strong and secure parks system for future generations,” Mary Polak, Minister of Environment.

“These investments will increase the number of camping opportunities in B.C. to help meet the growing demand. By offering recreation sites, we’re able to provide a range of camping experiences,” says Steve Thomson, Minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations .

 

Quick Facts:

 

* B.C.’s provincial parks receive more than 21 million visits each year.

* Parking is free in all provincial parks, making them more accessible to families.

* BC Parks manages the third-largest parks system in North America behind the United States National Park Service and Parks Canada.

* British Columbia has the highest percentage of its land base dedicated to protected areas of all provincial Canadian jurisdictions.

* B.C. offers a range of camping experiences in provincial parks as well as recreation sites.

* Over the past five years, the Province has invested approximately $60 million in park facilities, delivering projects directed at attracting young families, offering new recreation opportunities and increasing attendance.

 The new campsites, which will be available for the 2017 camping season, are:

* Blanket Creek Provincial Park near Revelstoke – 58 sites

* Halfway Hot Springs Rec Site near Nakusp – 20 sites

* Six Mile Bay Rec Site near Mackenzie – 20 sites

* Okanagan Lake South Provincial Park near Summerland  – eight sites

* Badger Lake Rec Site near Heffley – 30 sites

* Scuitto Rec Site near Kamloops – 17 sites

* Garibaldi Provincial Park near Squamish – 20 sites

* Chek Canyon Rec Site near Squamish – 32  sites

* Stave West -Sayres Lake Rec Site near Mission – 60 sites (Phase 1)

* Desolation Sound Provincial Park  near Powell River – 34 sites

* Rathtrevor Provincial Park near Parksville – 30  sites (Phase 1)

* Goldstream Provincial Park near Victoria – four sites

* Pye Mountain Rec Site  near Sayward – 20 sites

* Maple Grove Rec Site near Lake Cowichan – 22 sites

The new campsites are a mix of BC Parks and forestry recreation sites which supports maintaining a range of camping opportunities (rustic and less rustic) in the highest demand areas.

The construction of BC Parks campsites also includes associated infrastructure, such as roads, water and sewer expansion, electrical upgrades, outhouse facilities and shower and toilet buildings. New campground developments also incorporate accessible design standards.

The recreation site expansion will include associated roads, campsites with picnic tables and fire rings, signage and outhouse facilities.

The majority of the new BC Parks campsites will be available for reservation via the Discover Camping Reservation Service. To reserve your spot, please visit: https://secure.camis.com/DiscoverCamping/Home.aspx

Recreation sites are available on a first-come, first-served basis.

As part of the BC Parks Future Strategy, the Province is investing up to $22.9 million to add more than 1,900 new campsites over five years. More than 800 of the new sites will be in provincial parks, while more than 1,000 will be in recreation sites.

Additional campsites will be announced as expansion continues.

The Province also recently announced a new investment of $35 million over the next three years, as part of the BC Parks Future Strategy. The funding will result in 28 more full-time park rangers, new programs to promote and protect the environment, and $10 million as an initial endowment to the new BC Parks Foundation. This increased budget is also part of the BC Parks Future Strategy.

To date, more than 11,000 BC Parks licence plates have been sold since the plates became available for purchase at Autoplan broker offices on Jan. 29, 2017.  The Province introduced this series of specialty licence plates – featuring images of a Kermode bear found only in British Columbia, the snowcapped Purcell Mountains, and a stunning view from Porteau Cove overlooking Howe Sound – in partnership with the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC). Approximately $165,000 will go toward the Park Enhancement Fund as a result of the plate sales.

 

B.C. rolls out $95 million to support all 60 school districts

VICTORIA – Government is providing school districts with a total of $95 million to help them extend the life of their facilities, put new supplies in classrooms and buy new school buses.

Every school district in the province will receive a portion of this funding, which is being allocated through four provincial programs.

Under the School Enhancement Program, all school districts will receive a portion of this year’s $53-million investment, supporting 223 school improvement projects. This program helps school districts extend the life of their facilities through of a variety of upgrade projects.

“Through this suite of programs, we’re investing $95 million so that every school district can ensure students have the learning environment and tools they need to succeed, says Mike Bernier, Minister of Education.

“These capital investments will help school districts save money, protect their assets and support student learning. I encourage every district to continue to take advantage of these programs to support their students and schools.”

“I can’t wait to hear what exciting new learning resources will be coming to B.C. classrooms for next school year as a result of the new Student Learning Grant. Districts will be talking to teachers and parents to determine how they can best use the one-time funding to help bring the new curriculum to life and cut costs for families throughout the province.”

Every school district will also receive a portion of $27.4 million from the new Student Learning Grant, which was announced in February. Districts will use the funding to purchase classroom equipment and supplies such as textbooks, lab equipment and art supplies. Districts will begin back-to-school planning with parents and teachers now to determine how best to use the one-time funding to reduce costs for parents and help teachers deliver B.C.’s new curriculum.

Fifteen school districts will become more energy efficient with a $5-million investment under the Carbon Neutral Capital Program.  School districts will use the money to fund projects that cut greenhouse gas emissions. These upgrades benefit schools by saving them money on electricity, natural gas and maintenance. Schools can put the money they save back into classrooms.

Students in 25 school districts will benefit from 71 new and replacement buses with a $9.4-million investment under the School Bus Replacement Program. The new buses will make traveling to school safer and more reliable for students.

As a result of B.C.’s strong economy and balanced budget, the Government of British Columbia is able to support record funding increases for students and B.C.’s education system. Budget 2017 commits an additional $740 million in operating funds over the next three years. Combined with $400 million in previously announced budget increases, this means an additional $1.1 billion in funding will benefit the K-12 system over the next three years. In addition, Budget 2017 supports $2 billion in capital spending to upgrade or build new schools over the next three years.

 

People stuck for too long in Christy Clark’s gridlock, it’s time to get people moving

Opinion Editorial from John Horgan Leader of NDP

People want to spend their time with their friends and family, not sitting stuck in traffic for hours every day.

That’s why I welcome the announcement from the federal government that Ottawa is ready to come to the table to fund transit. Unfortunately, Christy Clark and the B.C. Liberals are still refusing to be full partners in building transit. I have committed to funding 40 per cent of the cost of transit construction to unlock federal funding and get people moving. Christy Clark has refused to do the same.

New Democrats are ready to get busy building transit and creating jobs. Right away. While Christy Clark and the B.C. Liberals keep stalling people in traffic, I’m ready to get shovels in the ground.

It just doesn’t make sense to delay. Not when we can create more than 40,000 new jobs, reduce traffic congestion and help people save time and money getting around the city.

I want to see people have more time to spend with their kids, with their friends, and watching the game, rather than being stuck in gridlock for hours every day. People have better things to do than idle in exhaust fumes while Christy Clark takes a private jet to work.

People don’t have time to wait. Costs rise for all of us every minute we do nothing. Traffic congestion costs us an average of one billion dollars every year in environmental costs, lost time, lost productivity, and goods being stuck in gridlock instead of getting to market. That will only rise over time.

Whether you drive or take transit, we need this infrastructure built – not more talk. We need to make it easier for people to get around and free up space on our streets by moving people more efficiently. We need buses and trains for Surrey and the Tri-Cities. We need to get goods moving. And we can create jobs while doing it.

Christy Clark can’t just keep telling the Metro mayors and commuters to “suck it up” as her minister Peter Fassbender did last fall. She can’t keep wasting people’s time with gimmicky referendums.

I’m all in on a partnership with Ottawa and the Metro region mayors to get this done for people.

It’s the right thing to do for our economy, for commuters, and for the fight against climate change.

Christy Clark only cares about her rich friends and corporate backers. They may not need transit, but ordinary people do.

Unlike Christy Clark, I’m working for ordinary people. I want to create good family-supporting jobs building the transit infrastructure we need. I want to get people moving so they can spend more time on the things that matter – like their friends and families – and less time stuck in traffic.

People have been stuck with Christy Clark for too long. It’s time to get people moving.

 

 

Lights out, power down for Earth Hour

VICTORIA – Thousands of British Columbians will join people around the world in turning off lights and powering down electronics as part of Earth Hour 2017, this Saturday, March 25, between 8:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m.

“While the one hour without lights is intended to be a symbolic act encouraging people to consider conservation throughout the year, the collective impact of this global action is significant. I encourage everyone to participate,” says Mary Polak, Minister of Environment.

The British Columbia government will be demonstrating its on-going support for climate action by joining the worldwide grassroots movement, most noticeably by turning off the Jubilee Lights at the Parliament Buildings in Victoria and the Lions Gate Bridge lights in Vancouver to celebrate the 11th-annual Earth Hour. Where possible, more than 170 provincial government offices will power off non-essential lights and electronics.

Earth Hour is a global event encouraging people to conserve energy by flicking the off-switch on lights and electronics and joining millions worldwide to show their support for climate change action. Participants from six continents, over 170 countries and 24 time zones will be united as a global community through individual action.

The global event started in Sydney, Australia in 2007 by the World Wildlife Fund to raise awareness about the effects of climate change. Today, Earth Hour has grown to engage more than 7,000 cities worldwide and continues to be recognized as a leader in uniting people all over the globe to combat climate change.

Quick Facts:

 

* According to the World Wildlife Fund:

* Earth Hour is scheduled 8:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., local time, around the globe because it is the closest hour to sunset in both hemispheres, allowing for the biggest visual     impact of lights out everywhere.

* Earth Hour 2016 took place in more than 7,000 cities, in more than 24 time zones.

 

* International landmarks that participated in lights out in 2016 include:

* The Eiffel Tower in Paris, France

* St. Peter’s Basilica in Vatican City, Italy

* The Empire State Building in New York City, U.S.A.

* The Houses of Parliament in London, U.K.

* The Opera House in Sydney, Australia

* Niagara Falls, Canada / U.S.A.

 

Abbotsford Police Department and MedicAlert Foundation Canada announce partnership

The Abbotsford Police Department and MedicAlert Foundation Canada, have established a new partnership to ensure those with autism, Alzheimer’s, dementia, or a cognitive brain injury, who go missing, can be helped by first responders and brought safely home sooner.

MedicAlert Connect Protect gives police officers 24-hour quick access to a registered subscriber’s photo, identity, past wandering history, and other vital emergency information through their MedicAlert medical IDs. This information will help officers search more efficiently, increasing the chances that those who go missing are reunited with their loved ones sooner. Officers called to an emergency involving a MedicAlert subscriber will also have access to vital information which may be necessary to save a life.

“We are excited to partner with the MedicAlert Connect Protect initiative,” says Chief Constable Bob Rich.  “Helping people with these medical conditions when they are lost and confused is a priority for us.  Finding someone who is lost and unable to tell you who they are or where they are from may be a challenge for us, but is a crisis for that person and their family.  This resource helps us find someone who needs to be found and gets that person back to where they are safe.”

“It’s critical that we’re able to find and recognize wandering or unidentified people as quickly and efficiently as possible, both to protect our subscribers and also to save police resources,” explains Robert Ridge, President and CEO of MedicAlert. “As we continue to form more partnerships with police departments in British Columbia, the MedicAlert Connect Protect service will safeguard Abbotsford residents through the valuable MedicAlert protection. In an emergency situation, the Abbotsford Police will have quick access to vital information that will save valuable time and unnecessary worry from family members and caregivers.”

Thanks to the Abbotsford Police Department and MedicAlert Foundation Canada, the first 100 new MedicAlert subscribers at each of these two locations on each day will get their first year service plan and a MedicAlert ID ($39 value) at no cost.

March 8, 2017                                                March 9th and 10th, 2017

Matsqui Centennial Auditorium (City Hall)             Seven Oaks Malls (near the front of The Bay)

32315 South Fraser Way, Abbotsford                         32900 South Fraser Way, Abbotsford

3:00 pm – 6:00 pm                                         10:00 am – 9:00 pm

For more information on MedicAlert Connect Protect service and special offers for Abbotsford residents, visit medicalert.ca/connectprotect.

About MedicAlert Foundation Canada

MedicAlert Foundation Canada (MAFCA) is the largest membership-based registered charity in Canada and it is the leading provider of emergency medical information services. MedicAlert’s mission is to ensure that all Canadians have access to high-quality health information at time of need. For over 55 years, MedicAlert has protected more than one million Canadians since 1961.

MedicAlert® is backed by robust electronic health records maintained by medically trained professionals, a state-of-the-art secure database, and a 24/7 Emergency Hotline that answers calls from emergency responder personnel in 140 languages within an average of 5 seconds, all linked to customized identification products for Canadians with medical conditions and special needs. Universally recognized and respected, MedicAlert speaks for you, when you can’t™.

Learn more about MedicAlert, how it works, and how you or a loved one can sign up to a service plan, visit medicalert.ca or by calling 1.855.581.3796.

Tax Tips to Help and Tax Scams to Avoid

Vancouver, BC – Tax season is here and BBB offers plenty of tips to help you find a trust tax preparer and to potentially avoid a couple of scams making the rounds in Canada.

“The CRA tax scam was still on our National Top 10 Scams list this year,” says Evan Kelly, Senior Communications Advisor for BBB serving Mainland BC. “The upside is we did see a drop in that scam, however it came back when the scammers contacted their victims offering to return their money for a fee.”

The CRA scam involved threatening phone calls at all hours demanding a tax repayment or you would be arrested or deported.

“The other good thing, is that according to BBB’s new Risk Index, fewer people are actually falling for tax scams this year even if they are approached,” adds Kelly. “Other scams we have seen are fake emails that look like they come from the CRA or other online tax return applications that actually redirect any government payments or steal information. These we need to be aware of.”

BBB offers these tip to find a trusted tax professional and to avoid getting scammed:

* Check on qualifications. Ask about their training, experience and knowledge of current tax law, and whether they are members of a professional organization with continuing education requirements and a code of ethics.

* Learn about their service terms in advance. Find out whether they guarantee the accuracy of their work and amend the return if there’s a mistake. And find out if they can be reached year round if there is a mistake or are required to undergo an audit, you want to make sure you can reach them after the tax season is complete.

* Ask for references. Get referrals from satisfied clients.

* Check with BBB. Visit www.bbb.org/mbc/ to determine if the tax preparer has a reputation for reliability and trustworthiness.

* Request a quote. Ask for an estimate of the preparation fee before authorizing the work.

* Signature. Make certain the preparer has signed it and get a copy and payment receipt for your records. Also review the return before signing it and ask for clarification of any entries you don’t understand.

Each year new scams surface online, promising tax refunds and other incentives to get you to part with your personal information.

Be on the watch for the following tax scams:

* Phishing Scams. Never open or download attachments included with messages claiming to be from the Canada Revenue Agency. Typically, these messages advise the recipient that they have qualified for a tax refund and need to click on a link to enter their information. The link takes the person to a bogus website and requires the visitor to enter personal identification. CRA will not contact you via email. Sometimes this is used to re-direct a direct deposit return.

* Identity Theft. If you’re doing your taxes on your own online, don’t use a public wireless connection. Even using the latest wireless security encryption standards such as WPA2 can be risky, so use a wired connection when dealing with sensitive financial and personal information.

* Malware. Refrain from opening any unsolicited tax-related email message, as some messages can exploit weaknesses in your browser and initiate a drive-by download of spyware or malware without your knowledge.

* The Canada Revenue Agency DOES NOT solicit personal information online or over the phone.

Empowerment, insight and connection at FREE Women’s conference

Vancouver, –    In honour of International Women’s Day,  Vancouver-area women of all backgrounds are invited to take part in a special, free women’s event – the Multicultural Women’s Conference and Fair on March 25, 2017, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Croatian Cultural Centre (3250 Commercial Dr.).

Let’s keep the momentum of women’s issues moving forward with a positive, empowering event that aims to bring women of all backgrounds together to connect, learn and inspire each other. After all, balancing all the demands we place on ourselves as women is not easy. Neither is overcoming the external professional, gender and cultural challenges we encounter.

“Sometimes we need an event like the Multicultural Women’s Conference and Fair for an opportunity to be inspired, and gain new insights from other women,” says Margaret Jetelina, editor of Canadian Immigrant magazine, the presenter of the event. “It’s about learning and making connections, and moving women’s issues forward.”

Here’s an overview of the activities and workshops being offered at the Multicultural Women’s Conference and Fair:

9:45 a.m.: REGISTRATION OPENS AT DOOR

10 a.m. to 10:15 a.m.: WELCOME plus a special BollyX dance/fitness presentation by Clara Chan

 

10:15 a.m. to 4 p.m.: TRADESHOW OF EXHIBITORS, which includes:

  • free Resumé Clinic by MOSAIC

 

  • “Get your Corporate Headshot” station with photographer Maddie Adams

 

  • “Mini Manicure” station by Beauty Night Society

 

  • Women’s Empowerment Art Therapy sessions with art therapist and life coach Nicole Gfeller

 

10:30 a.m.:  TOOLS AND TIPS FOR STARTING YOUR BUSINESS with Alpana Sharma of Women’s Enterprise Centre

11:30 a.m.:  CAREERS WITH THE VPD + SAFETY DEMO with Detectives Andrea Dunn, Michelle Neufeld and Julie Birtch

12:30 p.m.:  BE MINDFUL, BE YOUR BEST with Jasmine Bharucha, realtor, author and singer

1 p.m.:  CONFIDENCE AND ITS CONTRIBUTION TO CAREER SUCCESS with leadership coach Manpreet Dhillon

1:45 p.m.: THE WOMAN’S VOICE: SPEAKING TIPS with Catherine Steele of English Pronunciation for Success

2:15 p.m.: NETWORKING TRUTHS, TIPS AND TRICKS with Karen Southall Watts, entrepreneur and business trainer

2:45 p.m.: PARENTING WORKSHOP: THE POWER OF CONNECTION with Cheryl Song, parenting trainer and columnist

3:15 p.m.: CREATING A HAPPY BALANCE with Dr. Nareeta Stephenson of Strawberries and Sunshine Healing Centre

Registration for the event at www.canadianimmigrant.ca/womensfair<http://www.canadianimmigrant.ca/womensfair>.

For a spot in the art therapy group session, please email mjetelina@metroland.com.