Advocacy in Action – Annual Debrief

The Whistler Chamber – knowing what’s on Whistler’s mind.

By nurturing a diverse, innovative business community, we focus on creating a healthy resort economy and elevate Whistler’s business. With nearly 700 Members  – we are the voice of business in Whistler and the steward of the resort wide service solution, The Whistler Experience, which has trained over 20,000 people.

As your Chamber, we are hardworking advocates for Whistler business. We listen to the challenges and opportunities facing you, our Members, provide the facts and speak up for you with an independent voice.

In addition, hot topics like the Employers Health Tax, childcare issues and minimum wage to name a few, our top 3 areas of advocacy focus were:

Labour

We are committed to helping Members recruit, train and retain a strong resort workforce. Our team has successfully delivered on many initiatives – and we have much more work to do!

Recent labour market wins include:

  • creating a labour task force
  • delivering tools, resources and training via the Whistler Experience aimed at developing a thriving resort workforce
  • during Small Business Week, offering labour and sales resources to give businesses and staff an edge on the competition
  • Labour market whitesheet and letter from Whistler Chamber, including letters from affected Whistler Businesses, delivered to The Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister Employment, Workforce and Labour in Aug ’18
  • 2 sold out training sessions in Sep ’18: Immigration Strategies to Attract and Retain Employees. Due to demand, an additional session on February 12, 2019 is now being offered.
  • meeting with Provincial Minister of Labour, Harry Bains in Sep ’18
  • almost 900 responses to the 2018 Whistler Chamber Member labour surveys

Transportation

We continue ongoing advocacy with local government to encourage regional transportation and ensure your voice is heard when it comes to the urgency of this issue. For a second year in a row, the RMOW is offering a local Spirit Transit Pass, with a 20% discount to Whistler Experience participants. Additional advocacy work continues in collaboration with our area Chambers to communicate our concerns to the Provincial government around both transportation needs and congestion on the highway.

Housing

We continue collaborating with the RMOW as a part of Mayors Task Force on Resident Housing, and following the progress on current and future resident housing projects. We keep a regular monthly dialogue with our Federal representation – who this summer released the National Housing strategy. Across Canada, we have developed strong relations with other Chambers eager to share intel and innovative ideas on the housing challenges that are a national issue.

 

A strong voice for you

Federally

We hosted popular town hall’s with MP Pamela Goldsmith Jones in both February and August and worked with her specifically on housing and labour issues and federal tax changes and fairness for small businesses.

Provincially

In addition to regular communication with MLA Jordan Sturdy, we invited Minister Sturdy to speak with YOU, our Members on several occasions to cover hot issues effecting your business. Specifically addressing labour challenges, we met with Minister Harry Bains, Minister of Labour as well as Minister Bruce Ralston, Minister of jobs, trades and technology.

Locally

From monthly meetings with Resort Municipality of Whistler CAO, Mike Furey, sitting on the Mayors Task Force as well as the Transportation Advisory Group, and working closely with the RMOW’s economic development team, our resort partners are some of our most respected collaborators.

MESSAGE FROM MELISSA PACE, CEO, WHISTLER CHAMBER

Looking ahead

The Whistler Chamber of Commerce is pleased to share our objectives with you, our Members.  We will strive to deliver a variety of programs that are relevant to the Whistler community and will support your business challenges in the upcoming year. Business advocacy, locally, provincially and federally will, once again, be our top priority moving into 2019.

The Chamber is your strong voice for business and we do not work alone!  We encourage you to communicate with us through a variety of Chamber supported events, meetings and surveys to let us know what’s on your mind.  This will provide us with the direction, from our membership, on where to take action on your behalf.  The Chamber will continue to collaborate with our Resort Partners, other business associations, and all levels of government.  We will continue to work closely with the Canadian, B.C. and other local Chambers of Commerce, to ensure that our policies are relevant and have an impact on the Whistler Business community.

We are here to elevate YOUR business.  Stay informed with your Chamber by reading our quarterly editions of ‘Advocacy in Action’ or contacting us at any time.

Wishing you a healthy and prosperous 2019.

Melissa Pace, CEO, Whistler Chamber

 

 

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