Sales Taxes Have Nothing To Do With Health

By January 28, 2015Hot Topic

By Mike Archer. Dr. Patricia Daly, the Chief Medical Health Officer and the Vice President, Public Health for Vancouver Coastal Health, was on CBC Radio’s The Morning Show Wednesday, urging support for a ‘YES’ vote in the referendum over whether or not to impose a 5 percent sales tax across the Lower Mainland to fund Translink’s expansion plans.

Her argument in support of the sales tax was based on all of the positive impacts Translink’s plans will have on public health.

People will be more likely to use public transit and less likely to drive cars; people will walk more and sit less; the air will be cleaner as a result of fewer cars on the road …

Dr. Patricia Daly

Dr. Patricia Daly

How does Vancouver Coastal Health come to have anything to say about how we are taxed?

It is well and good for the good doctor to extol the virtues of Translinks grandiose plans for their perceived public health benefits, but what is she doing getting in the middle of a political battle over who pays for Translink’s dreams.

Dr. Daly told host Rick Cluff she hopes that citizens will vote in favour of the sales tax.

Vancouver Coastal Health has no place telling citizens how to vote and no role in supporting a proposed taxation method for another concocted by a group of area mayors.

Elected officials stand or fall based on their positions on matters of taxation and public policy. Dr. Daly should stick to her knitting and advise us on health issues without allowing herself to be co-opted by one side or the other in what is shaping up to be a highly contentious public debate.

Sales taxes have nothing to do with health.

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