More than 4,700 residents from Penticton and surrounding communities participated in a telephone town hall on Feb. 22 about the proposed privatization of their local community centre. The radio-like talk show format used the latest technology to connect with thousands of residents and address their questions and concerns.
On-air callers concerned about loss of services if the community centre is privatized ranged in age from a 12-year old girl to seniors.
“People care deeply about the community centre and keeping it public,” said CUPE 608 president Patti Finch. “The telephone town hall was a great opportunity for people to ask questions, learn more and raise concerns.”
When asked if the community centre should be operated publicly, 90 per cent of participants on the call said “Yes.” When asked what public services were most valuable to them: 28 per cent of participants said community centre and pool; 18 per cent said city parks; 44 per cent said emergency services; four per cent public transit, and eight per cent said the public library. Seventy-five per cent of participants had used the services of Penticton’s community centre from more than once a week to at least once a month.
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