The South Okanagan-Similkameen is our home. It is where we learned to fly a kite, where we make our lives, where we raised our children.
We have the opportunity to celebrate and protect this home place by creating a national park. A South Okanagan-Similkameen National Park Reserve would protect the unique species and habitats of our region, and bring an array of social and economic benefits to local communities.
A recent professional opinion poll taken in the South Okanagan-Similkameen shows a solid 70 percent support for the creation of a Park Reserve. Ordinary citizens, businesspeople, community leaders and scientists increasingly see the ecological, economic and social benefits to our region.
Beyond the world-class management of ecosystems and biodiversity, a National Park Reserve brings with it permanent jobs, recreation opportunities and a boost to our local tourism and winery sector. It can also provide a showcase for the rich Indigenous culture and history of the area.
What happens if we delay? More fragmentation, more habitat loss, more suburban encroachment.