In a judgment on December 8th, 2020, the BC Court of Appeal denied the Delta Hospice Society Board’s request for a stay of proceedings while they seek leave to appeal to the Supreme Court of Canada in a further attempt to deny members and applicants of the Society their basic rights to have a voice in the direction of the Delta Hospice.
“In his decision on December 8th, Mr. Justice Harris made it abundantly clear that the proposed application for leave to appeal to the Supreme Court of Canada has no prospect of success,” says Chris Pettypiece, Take Back Delta Hospice spokesperson. In that same decision, Mr. Justice Harris also confirmed that Delta Hospice Society is currently under order to deliver a register of members to the petitioners, Pettypiece, Jim Levin and Sharon Farrish. He went on to confirm that the list must include all applicants since November 28, 2019 without restriction or cut-off date.
The BC Court of Appeal noted that the existing Order requires the DHS Board to produce the updated membership list 14 days from November 13th, a deadline that has now passed. The DHS Board has failed to comply with an Order of the court and has failed in its responsibilities to the Society, having been found by the courts to have acted in bad faith in rejecting applicants.
“It is a breach of their most fundamental responsibilities to the Society and the community to engage in further delaying tactics and waste of the Society’s resources that should only be used for the sole purpose of providing care and services to patients and their loved ones,” Pettypiece continues.
This is another significant failure of the DHS Board of Directors, who have already lost $1.4 million in funding from the Province. The City of Delta has now revoked the Board’s ability to apply for a permissive tax exemption status, causing a further approximate $24,000 annual impact to operations. “We believe there is a total loss of confidence across our Community regarding the current Board’s prioritization of patient care and services,” Pettypiece went on to say.
The assets of the Society are now at stake, including operations of the Harold and Veronica Savage Centre for Supportive Care, which provides essential palliative, grief, and bereavement services, which are not funded under provincial health care services. At a time when appropriate oversight and governance for the Society is urgently needed, the DHS Board is instead focused on a North American-wide membership drive and continued litigation.
The asset of the Charity Shoppe, a commercially zoned property on 56th Street in Tsawwassen owned by the Society, and the income it generates, must be preserved for these essential grief and bereavement services. Local residents who donate and purchase from this shop do so with the belief that DHS is using all of its resources to benefit people in their community in need of care. In our opinion, these resources should not be used to fund legal bills and the lost tax exemption.
We call on everyone who cares about Delta Hospice to sign up as members to put a stop to the recklessness demonstrated by this Board of Directors. We must ensure that Supportive Care services remain intact today and for future generations.
Help us save the Delta Hospice: go to https://takebackdeltahospice.ca/membership/ to become a member.
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