Flag is lowered to half staff at B.C. legislature Wednesday after soldier confirmed killed in Ottawa shooting. Police van part of heightened security.

UPDATE: B.C. legislature to get security scanner

Premier Christy Clark, NDP leader John Horgan say public access to democratic institutions must continue

Extra security is in place at the B.C. legislature in Victoria, part of the response to shootings at Parliament Hill in Ottawa this morning.

Premier Christy Clark told reporters Wednesday there was a review of legislature security after an attempted plot to place homemade bombs on the legislature grounds before Canada Day celebrations in July 2013. That resulted in tighter security measures that will be reviewed again in the wake of the Ottawa shootings, Clark said.

B.C. Liberal house leader Mike de Jong said security staff have recommended installation of a security scanner for visitors, and he and NDP house leader Mike Farnworth have endorsed the plan.

In the legislature, Clark called for the tradition of open democracy to be maintained.

“Out of these tragedies today, we must all remember, first, to be grateful for those who work for us every day to keep us safe; second, to be grateful for the institutions we have built that have made Canada a model of democracy around the world; third, to move forward into the future and continue to make the decisions that Canada needs — unafraid to do what we need to do to stand up for this country, to ensure that citizens in Canada continue to have access to their public institutions, and unafraid to defend democracy and the institutions that have defined Canada for generations,” Clark said.

NDP leader John Horgan echoed that sentiment.

“As important as security measures will be over the next number of hours and days and weeks, not just here and in Ottawa but in every legislature in this country, we have to always keep in the forefront of our mind, in the forefront of the decisions that we make around security, that this institution belongs to the people of British Columbia — not to the 85 of us, but to everyone who lives in this province,” Horgan said. “They need to have access to those institutions if we’re going to continue to be defiant in the face of the insanity that happened today in Ottawa.”

Visitors to the legislature were restricted to scheduled tours, and only previously invited guests were allowed in the public gallery for Wednesday’s Question Period.

The legislature was closed to unscheduled visitors for today’s sitting, said Craig James, clerk of the B.C. legislature. He said legislature staff received a heightened risk alert this week, and a small number of MLAs were made aware of it. But there was no specific threat against the B.C. legislature.

Just Posted

Victoria-bound plane slides off icy Edmonton runway

Crew, passengers had to disembark via bridge stairs

VIDEO: Hundreds gather in Victoria as part of global Women’s March for equality

‘End Violence Against Women’ march theme for 2019

Victoria’s oldest pipes to be replaced this year

The pipes along Cook Street were installed in 1891 and are made of bricks

Esquimalt needs urgent health care facility, mayor says

A severe doctor shortage is leaving Esquimalt residents scrambling for health care

Almost four of 10 Canadians have unlimited internet data at home

Fifty-four per cent say they telecommute at least sometimes

WATCH: Medieval fighters train in Colwood

Fighters are gearing up for world championships in medieval combat

Want to avoid the speculation tax on your vacant home? Rent it out, Horgan says

Premier John Horgan and Sheila Malcolmson say speculation and vacancy tax addresses homelessness

CONSUMER REPORT: What to buy each month in 2019 to save money

Resolve to buy all of the things you want and need, but pay less money for them

UPDATE: B.C. woman and boy, 6, found safe, RCMP confirm

Roseanne Supernault says both she and her six-year-old nephew are fine and she has contacted police

PHOTOS: Women’s Marches take to the streets across B.C. and beyond

Women and allies marched worldwide protesting violence against women, calling for equality

Anxiety in Alaska as endless aftershocks rattle residents

Seismologists expect the temblors to continue for months, although the frequency has lessened

Women’s March returns across the U.S. amid shutdown and controversy

The original march in 2017, the day after President Donald Trump’s inauguration, drew hundreds of thousands of people

Federal Liberals announce former B.C. MLA as new candidate in byelection

Richard Lee will face off against federal NDP leader Jagmeet Singh

Most Read