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General News · 23rd October 2019
Rob Chapman
Push marketer finds us on Cortes
She arrived on our doorstep like unwanted winter flu. She seemed a little bewildered, but I finally understood that she was pushing some kind of oddball first aid insurance.
The offering seemed to be that, if you were in need of immediate medical attention due to a fire, auto accident, or some other misfortune, and had called 911, and the paramedics were on their way, then this service would attempt to provide immediate first aid, until the paramedics arrived. This could help to keep you comfortable, or even alive, until the paramedics got there.
I asked how much this would cost, and she said that that depended on the current assessed potential resale value of our home. I couldn’t figure out what that had to do with this type of insurance, but she was insistent. She gave as examples that the premium would be $26.00 for a home valued at $200,000.00, or $67.00 for a home valued at $500,000.00.
Since the probability of an individual on Cortes being in this situation over their entire lifetime are probably less than .0001%, the premiums suggested didn’t make any actuarial sense, at all. So I told her ‘no sale’, and sent her on her way.
…Rob Chapman Squirrel Cove
not everything is about money
Comment by De Clarke on 24th October 2019
Everyone has their own reasons for supporting or opposing the upcoming referenda. While I personally don't expect to be rescued from a burning car by our local fire dept (odds on that are pretty low, given that I don't drive much and never drive drunk), I nevertheless wholeheartedly support the first responders training proposal.

Saving the lives of my fellow islanders is one reason. But another, perhaps unimportant to some people but feeling quite significant to me, is the morale and heart of our VOLUNTEER fire fighters. These folks are volunteering, remember - their free time, their bodily effort, their personal risk-taking - to protect life and property for the rest of us.

There's a certain amount of ordinary danger involved. But as I've been thinking it over this summer, trying to put myself in their shoes... it seems to me there's also a risk (without this training) of arriving at a scene and watching someone die or suffer, being unable to intervene - not permitted to intervene - because of not being properly trained and "ticketed".

We could argue till the cows come home about credentialling as a phenomenon, about BC being over the top when it comes to tickets and training programmes. It's a valid discussion, and it's worth having. But it doesn't change the fact that right now in the real world, constrained as we are by insurance policies and rules & regs and so on, it seems like our fire fighters could find themselves in that very situation; and that situation would be unbearable, could haunt a person for life.

So I do want our fire fighters to be trained and ticketed in some paramedical fundamentals, so that they have the ability and official blessing to intervene and save lives when they are on the spot first and there isn't time to wait for the ambulance crew. I don't want our volunteers to experience that dreadful helplessness in a moment of crisis. They are doing so much, training and practising and living on call, to protect me from harm and loss; I feel like this is the least I can do to express my appreciation, to do something to protect them in return. That's just how I see it: to me, it's not so much about money and "return on investment" or "cost/benefit analysis" as about gratitude and community.
Will you listen to the majority?
Comment by Stephen Reid on 23rd October 2019
In just a few days, the people will speak, will you listen to the majority? If the majority decides to reject proposed services, then we will all save our precious money. And I will admit I was wrong.
No I don't want to invite all modern trappings to Cortes.
IF the majority votes for the proposed service, I will gladly pay it. Despite the %0.001, or one in a million chance it will save my life. Gladly pay it. Probability, or my version of common sense, tells me that someday, eventually, it WILL save somebody's life. Even if it doesn't, it still invests in the training and competency of our local volunteers.
I am willing to put my hard earned dollar on the line. Giving back to my community, or kissing it goodbye, depending on your perspective. I am all for upgrading the skills of our VOLUNTEER fire dept.
I believe in this service, but will support the majority should they reject it. I believe in the will of the people, and I'm gonna be a positive force in this community. I believe the best decision will be made according to all our voting opinions.
I respectfully disagree with my interpretation of your poem.
I have seen enough of this world to know what poverty looks like. This here on Cortes isn't poverty, although there are some who are truly struggling, others are just pretending to on anti tax principal. I am no fan of filling gov't coffers, but in this case I see an affordable result. I am living in a rich part of the world so I'm gonna act like it. What I mean is that $67 is a trifling sum of money to me.

Stephen Reid (local labourer, father, mortgage holder)
what is a life worth
Comment by Anne on 23rd October 2019
I am extremely grateful that a group of *volunteer* firefighters train weekly throughout the year to be able to respond to emergencies. And now they are asking for money, not to be paid for their efforts, but to be able to help save lives and respond more efficiently to our community in our gravest times of need. I for one have already needed this type of service in my short 5 years here on Cortes and I would not like to bet against my family, loved ones, friends or acquaintances ever needing this service in their lifetimes.