NDP fails to improve transparency around COVID-19 data

PRINCE GEORGE (September 28, 2021) – Despite repeated calls for increased transparency, John Horgan and the NDP continue to fail to deliver the detailed COVID-19 data that British Columbians need. As a result, the BC Liberals are renewing their calls for more specific COVID-19 data to be made readily available to the public to increase understanding and allow people to make better-informed decisions as case counts rise.

“For months now, experts, parents, teachers, reporters, and the Official Opposition have been calling on the government to be more transparent with COVID-19 data, and provide more granular, localized statistics that allow people to make better-informed decisions,” said MLA Shirley Bond, Interim Leader of the Official Opposition. “The government has resisted making changes to the data they release despite continual requests, with the only substantial improvements occurring after leaked documents revealed they were keeping more detailed information from British Columbians. Especially now, as cases remain high and hospitals, particularly in northern B.C., are increasingly stretched, more localized data must be made publicly accessible to help shape people’s behaviour.”

The BC Liberals are calling on the NDP government to provide information on COVID-19 case counts broken down by community. Additionally, the NDP must start regularly reporting data on exposure settings, as well as local hospitals’ capacity for beds, staffing levels, cancelled surgeries, and all hospitalizations due to COVID-19, regardless of whether the patients are still infectious.

“British Columbians deserve to know the full picture when it comes to COVID-19 in our province and recently leaders in Northern B.C. specifically asked for detailed, local data, to help them encourage people in their communities to get vaccinated,” added Bond. “Localized and consistently reported data is essential in our pandemic fight, and here in British Columbia increased transparency is long overdue.”