Category: Media

Get a Sneak Preview of the Brand New

mic is working out the final bugs but give it a test run if you please!

PeerNetBC 2012 AGM – Vancouver

We would like to invite you to the PeerNetBC Annual General Meeting, which will be held in conjunction with an open house for our wonderful spacious office.

The open house will be Wednesday, September 26 from 5pm until 7pm. The brief AGM portion will take place at 6pm. Everyone who has supported or worked with us in the last year is invited to attend. If you would like to be a member, go here.

The PeerNetBC office is located at #408 – 602 West Hastings. Just at the corner of Hastings and Seymour. We look forward to seeing you then.


The citizenU project continues to seek new organizations to participate in their youth leadership and anti-racism project. We are very happy with how things have been going with citizenU and proud to see the impacts that a better understanding of others can have in a community. Romi has been doing some amazing work and we are pleased to share and his skills with the City of Vancouver.

Building Inclusive Communites

PeerNet’s multigenerational project, Building Inclusive Communities, will be starting a new cycle in the fall. Lydia has been working with some exciting communities on some really interesting projects. More details to come on this.
Upcoming Workshops

  • October 2, 2012 Principles of Peer Support
  • October 10, 2012 Power and Diversity
  • October 16, 2012 Introduction to Facilitation
  • October 20, 2012 Levelling Power Imbalances
  • October 23, 2012 Exploring Facilitation Skills
  • October 27, 2012 Communication Skills
  • November 6, 2012 Understanding Individual Learning Styles
  • November 15, 2012 Boundaries and Self Care
  • November 22, 2012 Advanced Leadership

For more information on our workshops, and online registration, visit the Upcoming Workshops page of our website.

Get Involved

Join our Mailing List
Become a Member
Donate via PayPal
Donate via CanadaHelps

About PeerNetBC

 Youth - Community - HealthPeerNetBC has been helping people connect since 1986, providing resources for peer groups and peer-led initiatives. Our resources and services are available for community members and groups across British Columbia, including online, rural, First Nations, multicultural and youth engagement initiatives. PeerNetBC is a non-profit, registered charitable organization.

Occupy Hong Kong served with Eviction notice from their Encampment at HSBC HQ

“We’ve never asked for permission from the law, we’ve never asked for permission from the courts, we’ve never asked for permission from HSBC,” said Nin Chan, one of the Occupy activists. “From the very beginning we’ve never recognized these authorities as legitimate.”

While HSBC owns the land, it’s legally designated as a public passageway. The judge ruled that the activists’ use of the space goes beyond the land’s designated use.

Protesters have been given until August 27th to vacate the area around HSBC’s Hong Kong Headquarters, you may or may not have heard about the bank in the news recently for profiting hundreds of millions of dollars in fees  when it “laundered billions of dollars for drug cartels, terrorists and pariah states.”

Aug 13 (Reuters) – HSBC won a legal bid on Monday to have members of the Occupy Hong Kong movement evicted from the open-air plaza beneath the bank’s Asian headquarters, bringing an end to one of the longest-running Occupy demonstrations. 

WALL STREET JOURNAL: The decision by the high court came after HSBC Holdings PLC filed a lawsuit last month against four defendants affiliated with the movement. Occupy protesters have been camping in a designated public space beneath the bank’s Hong Kong headquarters—one of the city’s most recognizable buildings—since Oct. 17. The court ruled that the use of the area is beyond its designated purpose.

NEW YORK TIMES: About a dozen protesters still use a collection of tents erected in an area that is owned by HSBC but is designated as a public passageway. If the protesters have not left by the deadline, 9 p.m. Aug. 27, the next step would be for a court bailiff to decide what, if any, action to take.

Feds met privately with oil execs to discuss ‘communications effort’

By Geoff Dembicki | July 23, 2012

Top federal government policymakers met with several oil industry executives during the summer of 2009 to discuss an oil sands “communications effort”, according to internal documents.

The meeting took place in the downtown Calgary headquarters of Nexen, a leading oil sands producer (which may soon be acquired by a Chinese state-owned company).

“While we understand Government and industry will not always have identical messages,” read briefing notes prepared for then deputy natural resources minister Cassie Doyle, “it is important to ensure that our facts are consistent.”

Doyle appears to have been joined in the “Meeting with Oil Company Executives” by Kevin Lynch, then-Clerk of the Privy Council Office, one of the Prime Minister’s most important advisors.

The list of confirmed and potential industry attendees reads like a who’s who of western Canada’s oil-patch, including executives from Nexen, Suncor, Shell, ConocoPhillips, Syncrude and the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP).

The meeting’s itinerary and a list of “Points to Register” by deputy minister Doyle were obtained by Greenpeace through an access to information request.

The day before the meeting, CAPP President Dave Collyer wrote to Doyle about her trip to Calgary, explaining that “it would be desireble [sic] to have all of the companies involved in the [oil sands] communications effort represented at this meeting.”

The would “ensure a consistent and aligned approach,” wrote Collyer. That “approach” apparently referred to a government and industry-led campaign that would counter negative public perceptions about Alberta’s so-called “dirty oil.”

“Canada is developing a full-blown case of the ‘resource curse,'” said Greenpeace Canada climate and energy coordinator Keith Stewart in a statement, “where governments put what is good for oil companies ahead of what is good for the nation.”

The internal documents, along with a report summarizing them, were released by the advocacy group as Canada’s premiers meet in Halifax for the annual Council of the Federation talks.

The Tyee has sent a media request to Natural Resources Canada, asking what was discussed at the 2009 meeting, and what the federal government hoped to achieve by developing a “communications effort” with Canada’s oil industry leaders.

Geoff Dembicki reports on energy and climate change issues for The Tyee.

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‘Culture of Deviance’ at Enbridge, Finds US Transport Safety Board

‘Corrosion’ of safety culture ‘throughout the Enbridge organization’ led to Kalamazoo disaster.

By Andrew Nikiforuk,

US National Transportation Safety Board today found Calgary-based Enbridge ‘took advantage of weak regulations’ leading to worst ever US pipeline spill.

The U.S. National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has concluded that Calgary-based Enbridge “took advantage of weak regulations,” tolerated a “culture of deviance” on safety and failed to detect and properly respond to the largest and costliest oil pipeline spill in U.S. history.

NTSB Chairman Deborah Hersman also noted that Enbridge’s poor handling of the rupture reminded her of the Keystone Cops and that the company’s pipeline safety management lacked integrity.

Another NTSB board member Robert Sumalt said that the accident demonstrated a “corrosion” of the safety culture “throughout the Enbridge organization.”

Added Sumalt: “If you are not learning from previous events, you don’t have a safety culture.”

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Victoria’s Pride Parade 2012!


WHAT AN AMAZING DAY!!! It was a fantastic day of record breaking at Pride 2012! Largest parade yet, largest festival to date, the most volunteers filling the highest number of volunteer hours yet! THANK YOU to everyone that volunteered, that participated as a vendor, that gave of their talents to provide entertainment, and to everyone that came to celebrate and support our community. We had the best Pride yet, and we can’t say thank you enough to express our gratitude. Check our site for photos, and to get information on Pride 2013!


Enbridge throws its advertising weight around.

Dan Murphy, a Canadian newspaper cartoonist has accused the paper’s parent company, Postmedia News of censorship after his animation was removed from the paper’s website.

Murphy, who works for The Vancouver Province says that the paper removed a satirical cartoon it was threatened by oil and gas giant Enbridge.

The original Enbridge advertisement was designed to promote its controversial pipeline project across the provinces of British Columbia and Alberta. Murphy’s satirical cartoon mocked Enbridge, splattering oil across their proposed “path to prosperity”.

Murphy told CBC News that he was called into the office of The Province’s Editor-in-Chief, Wayne Moriarty, who told him that the chief revenue and digital officer at Postmedia was upset about the spoof, that Enbridge would pull $1m worth of advertising out of Postmedia and that Moriarty would be fired if the video was not removed.

Moriarty has since claimed that the video was removed for copyright reasons.

Todd Nogier, Senior Communications Strategist at Enbridge said in a statement, “Enbridge Inc. did not request the Province or Post Media pull the video […] Enbridge has not discontinued this campaign, nor its investments as part of that campaign, nor did Enbridge threaten to discontinue those investments.”

However, in a subsequent phone conversation, an Enbridge spokesperson said, the company “had a conversation with Postmedia and they apologised for the parody [… ] any further conversation would be inappropriate”.

Murphy said speaking out has been the toughest decision he’s faced in his 25-year career at the paper.

“I could lose my job over this. The company could interpret this as being disloyal. I would argue that it is the opposite.”

STUDY:Mainstream Media Avoid Climate Context In Wildfire Coverage

While numerous factors determine the frequency, severity and cost of wildfires, scientific research indicates that human-induced climate change increases fire risks in parts of the Western U.S. by promoting warmer and drier conditions. Seven of nine fire experts contacted by Media Matters agreed journalists should explain the relationship between climate change and wildfires. But an analysis of recent coverage suggests mainstream media outlets are not up to the task — only 3 percent of news reports on wildfires in the West mentioned climate change.

News Outlets Avoid Topic Of Climate Change In Wildfire Stories


Only 3 Percent Of Wildfire Coverage Mentioned Long-Term Climate Change Or Global Warming. The major television and print outlets largely ignored climate change in their coverage of wildfires in Colorado, New Mexico and other Western states. All together, only 3 percent of the reports mentioned climate change, including 1.6 percent of television segments and 6 percent of text articles.

Media Matters

METHODOLOGY: We searched Nexis and Factiva databases for articles and segments on (wildfire or wild fire or forest fire) between April 1, 2012, and June 30, 2012. News outlets included in this study are ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN, The New York TimesThe Washington Post, The Associated Press, The Los Angeles Times,, USA Today and The Wall Street Journal. MSNBC and Fox News were not included in this analysis because transcripts of their daytime coverage are not available in the Nexis database.

Media Matters

Evidence Suggests Climate Change Worsens Fire Risk In Parts Of Western U.S.

Climate Central: “Wildfires Require Several Factors To Come Together.” A Climate Central article about the 2011 fire season noted that “major wildfires require several factors to come together,” and that wildfires are strongly influenced by regional climate conditions, which in turn are influenced by global warming driven by greenhouse gas emissions:

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The Robocall Scandal’s Vancouver Link

As Elections Canada investigation continues, complaints of calls in two ridings unfold.

Robocall protest shot

By Tom Sandborn, Yesterday,

Vancouver rally against dubious robocalls on March 3. Photo bychrisyakimov via Your BC: The Tyee’s Photo Pool.

The robocall scandal that recently rocked Canadian politics may have Vancouver connections. At least one voter, Andrew Schofield in Vancouver South, says he received a taped call shortly before the election that falsely claimed his polling station had been moved, The Tyee has learned.

“At first I didn’t pay much attention to the call,” Schofield said. “It was a taped voice announcing itself as coming from Elections Canada and saying my polling station had been moved. Since we always get calls like this twice, once for me and once for Suzanne, I expected another call for her and that she would keep better track of it than I would.”

(“Suzanne” is Schofield’s spouse, Dr. Suzanne Smythe. Full disclosure: This reporter has known Smythe and Schofield for several decades.)

“But after the election, when I heard news coverage of the robocalls events across Canada, I realized that the examples played on the radio sounded just like my call, which I knew by then had not been accurate. So we decided to report what looked like an attempt to keep us from voting.”

Vancouver Quadra MP Joyce Murray also claims that during the election her campaign staff received calls from voters complaining about late night and rude callers who identified themselves as working for the Liberals.

Elections Canada continues to investigate more than 1,100 complaints about voter suppression calls during the last election, all of which are being “looked at,” spokesperson John Enright told The Tyee.

‘No complaints’ against contractor: Young

After Smythe filed a report about the call online, she received an email apparently from the winner of the Vancouver South election, Conservative Wai Young, reading in part:

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