My Vote, My Future: Monica Chan on BC Election 2017

Apr 14 2017, 5:24 am

Ahead of the BC election, Daily Hive is profiling young voters from across the province. Want to join in and share your thoughts? Email [email protected], subject line: My Future.

Who are you?

Monica Chan.

How old are you?

Early 30s.

What do you do?

I work in a non-profit organization.

Where do you live?

Richmond, BC.

Have you voted before?


Do you plan on voting this time?

Of course!

Does your family influence how you vote?

To an extent. My parents are influenced by the party who reached out to new immigrants some 40 years ago and that has a bit of impact knowing that party was there for my parents. My husband and I discuss politics as it relates to our day-to-day, and he’s been more tuned in than I have in the past, so I’d say he’s a big influencer for sure.

How closely do you follow BC politics?

More now.

Do you know who your local candidates are?

No, and I’d like to use the excuse that I moved not too long ago but honestly, I don’t know my old district representative either.

Can you name the three party leaders?

Just two: Christy Clark and John Horgan. [For the record, the third is Andrew Weaver.]

Would you ever consider running for office?

No, it’s not my arena and I can’t see it being a priority for me and my family. Call it selfish, but I’m not prepared to make the sacrifices.

What issues do you care most about?

Affordability and housing

I have been naive about the affordability topic until last year. In 2016, we were newly married and we opened a new business. Needless to say, there was a lot of budget planning. That really brought to the forefront the issue of affordability and affordable housing. It’s a steep learning curve and it was like being hit by a bucket of cold water.

Reality is that our expenses were disproportionately higher than income. Paying down debt ate up a lot of our earning and we were growing particularly worried about the housing euphoria (aka bubble alert!). We had to make some changes to level out that imbalance including moving out of Vancouver, selling our condo to deleverage, and actively seeking out other opportunities for investment.

We are comfortable now with our debt level but it’s a daily conversation about how we can position ourselves so we can have the lifestyle we want in the long-term.

BC is my home. Both my husband and I were born here. My families are here. Our future family is here. Our business is here. We love this city. We just can’t afford it without mortgaging our future. This negative spiral has got to stop.

I want to see long-term plans in place to address affordability and increasing income levels. I feel like the general direction is very short term focused.

An example would be the provincially backed loan announced by Christy Clark last December. Yes it’s great to help first time home-owners with their downpayment, but how would they keep up with mortgage payments and other expense if it’s already difficult to achieve a down payment? This is glaringly short-sighted. Is there a plan in place to help these same families earn more income? No more bandaid policies.

Are you a young British Columbian and eligible to vote in the BC election? We would love to profile you. Email [email protected], subject line: My Future, to find out more.

Daily Hive is your home for BC Election coverage throughout the campaign period. To access our full BC Election coverage click here: Battleground BC.

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