Ministers and reverends tell mayor and council: "No casino!"
Citing social ills, a group of church leaders have called on the mayor and city council to impose a moratorium on propsals for "enormous expansion" of gaming in the city.
The churches are St. Andrew’s Wesley, Central Presbyterian Church, Christ Church Cathedral, First Baptist Church, and St. Paul’s Anglican Church. Here is their letter to the mayor and council:
Clergy and Staff from Downtown Vancouver Churches
Mayor and Council
City of Vancouver
March 9, 2011
Re: Mega-Casino Opposition
Dear Mayor Robertson and City Council:
The undersigned, clergy and staff from major downtown Vancouver churches have agreed, personally and collectively, to stand in opposition to the proposed expansion of The Edgewater Casino in The Yaletown-False Creek area.
We are particularly concerned that the people of Vancouver have not been adequately consulted on the subject of gambling expansion in the city, and we are especially concerned that those who work and reside in the Vancouver downtown core have not been adequately informed of the plans to redefine life in the downtown area through the construction of this mega-casino.
We do not support the enormous expansion of the Edgewater Casino and its proximity to the soon-to-be-reopened BC Place Stadium, particularly when it is proposed to become the centrepiece of a large “entertainment complex” complete with hotels, restaurants, and other facilities.
Well documented social ills which accompany any and all casino developments are more than sufficient reasons for us to oppose this planned development. Our resistance is magnified even further when we see the scale of the casino that is proposed to be located in the heart of downtown!
We call on Vancouver Mayor and City Council to impose a moratorium on all gaming expansion in our municipality pending a full and comprehensive public review of gambling, its regulation, and the appropriate gaming revenue-sharing formula with municipalities and non-profit organizations.
From: St. Andrew’s-Wesley United Church
Rev. Gary Paterson, Senior Minister
Jennifer Cunnings, Minister of Children, Families and Seniors
Tim Scorer, Minister of Adult Formation
Michael Dobbin, Director of Development
From: Central Presbyterian Church
Rev. Jim Smith, Minister
From: Christ Church Cathedral
The Very Reverend Dr. Peter Elliott, Dean,
The Venerable Dr. Ellen Clark-King, Associate,
The Reverend Chris Dierkes, Curate,
The Reverend Dixie Black, Deacon
From: First Baptist Church
Rev. Darrell W. Johnson, Senior Minister
Rev. Dr. John Cuddeford, Minister
Andrea Tisher, Dir. of Music & Worship
Rev. Bob Swann, Minister of Mission & Justice
Judy Lang, Ass. Minister for Congregational Care
Pastor Janet G. Porcino, Minister of Discipleship
Luz Figueroa, Director of Children and Family Ministries
Rev. Abraham Han, Minister of Urban & Community Life
From: St. Paul’s Anglican Church
The Rev. Markus Duenzkofer, Incumbent