Devoting their time and energy to helping those in need, this year’s Public Safety Lifeline Volunteer award winners have made significant contributions to emergency and disaster response in British Columbia.
During a ceremony today at the Parliament Buildings, Attorney General and Minister of Justice Suzanne Anton recognized the outstanding achievements of six emergency volunteers. Public Safety Lifeline Volunteers (PSLVs) conduct air and ground searches, help the victims of serious car accidents, set up networks of volunteer teams and co-ordinate services for victims of natural disasters.
There are more than 10,000 PSLVs throughout the province who respond to an average of 6,000 incidents a year. Each year, volunteers are recognized for their outstanding contributions in the following six specialized categories: PEP Air, Emergency Social Services, Radio Communications, Road Rescue, Search and Rescue and Lifetime Achievement.
The 2014 winners are:
PEP Air - Jim Spencer (Nanaimo)
Emergency Social Services - Vasantha Aruliah (Port Coquitlam)
Radio Communications - Bill Foster (Kamloops)
Road Rescue - Keith Laboucan (Prince George)
Search and Rescue - Jack Bryceland (Chilliwack)
Lifetime Achievement - Ron Royston (West Vancouver)
Attorney General and Minister of Justice Suzanne Anton -
“British Columbia’s Public Safety Lifeline Volunteers demonstrate a tireless commitment to the safety of families and communities throughout the province. They are local heroes who provide aid and support to the public during times of extreme hardship. They are there for people in their worst moments. On behalf of government and all British Columbians, I would like to extend a special thank you to all of those that put the needs of others before themselves.”
- There are approximately 2,500 registered search and rescue volunteers throughout B.C. who respond to nearly 1,000 incidents, more than any other province, involving over 1,300 lost or injured persons.
- Road rescue volunteers attend more than 2,000 motor vehicle accidents annually in B.C. Under the road rescue organization, teams provide vehicle extrication, rope rescue and other specialized rescue services to help protect B.C.’s travelling public.
- PEP Air's primary function is to assist Canadian Forces during search and rescue missions when additional resources are required. Currently, the organization includes over 100 aircraft crewed by more than 900 pilots, spotters and navigators.
- Emergency Social Services provides short-term assistance to British Columbians who are forced to leave their homes because of fire, floods, earthquakes or other emergencies. This assistance includes food, lodging, clothing, emotional support and family reunification.
- Emergency Radio Communications respond when all other systems of communications fail. A proven and reliable means of communications, emergency or “ham” radio is a public safety lifeline that helps co-ordinate crisis relief.
- Five of the awards were presented today at B.C.'s Parliament Buildings. Jack Bryceland, recipient of the PSLV of the Year Award for Search and Rescue, was unable to attend and will be recognized at an upcoming event.
To learn more about Public Safety Lifeline Volunteers and their work in your community, visit: http://ow.ly/xbJN5
Government Communications and Public Engagement
Ministry of Justice