Bulletin file

Letters: Our readers offer opinions on service dog statue

Municipal Governance in Kimberley – Democracy at work.

On Saturday October 15, 2022 Kimberley voters decided which six individuals would form municipal government ( the mayor was acclaimed). These seven individuals all took the oath of office and are currently providing governance services until the next municipal election that will happen in just under four years.

Municipal governance is a thankless – but critically important – job that many of us take for granted. It requires members of council to participate fully in the myriad of issues and challenges facing our small city, sometimes that can add up to long hours away from friends and family, resulting in exhaustion and some members of council possibly wondering what they signed up for!

Those on council are entrusted by the citizens- through a democratically elected process – to ensure that no particular interest dominates or exploits individual members to an unreasonable degree.

Ultimately council members have to make their own decisions on how to vote – that’s their job. On a council of seven, four votes (regardless of whether you agree or disagree with the direction) will create a resolution of council. When a resolution of council happens, it needs to be respected.

My hat ( toque!?) goes off to all the members of Kimberley City Council for providing governance services to our community. …Thank You!

Darryl Oakley

Kimberley, BC

To: Cindy Postnikoff,

Attn: Cindy;

As you know, I’ve been working with veterans diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder in our area for a number of years now. Their plight is generally misunderstood. Unfortunately, PTSD has often become a catchall for many who use the term without a formal diagnosis as a way to explain their own issues. This is, of course, a very different matter than those who have undergone a rigorous diagnostic process.

I have watched (via youtube) the proceedings at Kimberley City Council regarding the installation of a Service Dog statue at the Kimberley Veterans Memorial Park by Military Ames and am shocked and disappointed by Council’s rejection of Military Ames proposal. I was truly amazed by the glib explanations put forth by detractors to this proposal. I was appalled at the ignorance displayed in some of the remarks made by councilors. To even remotely suggest that one understands what the veterans (especially combat veterans) are facing on a day to day basis is simply amazing. I have been working with these veterans and listening to their truly horrific experiences for years and I would still not insult them by saying that I understand them. The best I can say to them is that I believe them and the biggest compliment I can receive from them is “you get it”! I would like to believe that council’s refusal is simply the result of being uninformed. I would also like to commend the Military Ames veterans who attended council meetings for their restraint given the comments that were made.

I personally see the difference these dogs make in bringing a semblance of normalcy to veterans. They often spell the difference between the veteran giving up on life or continuing with a sense of purpose and dignity. And all of this is not to mention the dogs

that are put in harms way on the battlefield to save the lives of the men and women out there fighting for our privilege to live peacefully, all the while supporting our military members mentally as well as physically.

Finally, I am surprised that council didn’t jump at and embrace this opportunity to show their appreciation to those who have sacrificed so much.

Yours truly,

Ben Braun

“Please show your support. This is your community and you deserve to be heard.” – Cindy Postnikoff

“Cenotaph is a monument, sometimes in the form of a tomb, to a person or group of persons buried elsewhere.” – Merriam Webster

I will never forget my earliest memory. I had just turned six. There was a knock at the front door by two uniformed men. They brought news that my 32 year old father, a veteran of World War II, an RCAF fighter pilot, had crashed and perished in his P-51 Mustang. He died in service for his country. Tears, pain and grief filled the next days and months.

With this history in mind, I am therefore opposed to a service dog statue in the Veterans Memorial Park. The purpose of the Cenotaph and park is to honour those men and women who served our country.

With regard to service dogs, I am willing to contribute to a statue to honour and celebrate the contributions of these animals, however it would be in a more suitable location.

Dr. R. Craig Spowart

Kimberley