MP discusses lockdown frustrations with local business owner

Com. Wes Graham, Trevor Zak and MP Morrison speak to the media.

An owner of the Cranbrook Fitness Center continues to search for a reasonable explanation as to why his business must remain closed due to the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, when so many similar businesses are allowed to remain open.

And Kootenay-Columbia MP Rob Morrison agrees.

Morrison and Cranbrook Town Councilor Wes Graham met with Fitness Inc. owner Trevor Zak at the closed business this morning. (See the videos below.)

“None of this makes sense. There are no statistics to back it all up. Where are Dr. Bonnie’s stats? There’s nothing to back it up,” Zak said, noting that he hasn’t received anything from the government detailing exactly why gyms need to close when things like public pools, junior hockey games and other country clubs may remain open.

An empty Fitness Inc.

The pandemic has been a rollercoaster for Zak and his staff as his business had to shut down at times during the pandemic “and we were just getting started and Dr. Bonnie Henry provincially shut us down. She does not suffer the consequences of closing us.

“The closures have created a serious mental health problem in Canada,” Morrison said, while calling on the federal government to build critical care capacity across the country.

“Two years into the pandemic, we need to make sure we have the tools to live with COVID-19 while ensuring Canadians can lead normal lives. The Trudeau government’s inaction results in an inability to manage risks beyond widespread containment practices. After two years, the Liberal government has still failed to show national leadership in domestic production, procurement and education regarding rapid COVID tests. Rapid tests are a key tool and most Canadians still do not have adequate access to them,” Morrison said.

A message to customers at the door of Fitness Inc.

“Continuing sweeping closures will not solve the underlying problem of lack of cutting-edge resources in the Canadian healthcare system. That’s why, in the last election, the Conservatives promised a collaborative approach to building provincial health care capacity as part of a historic $60 billion increase in health care transfers. The federal government needs to stop continuing to spend money on band-aid solutions to enable closures instead of fixing the root of the problem.

Morrison said Canada’s Conservatives are calling on the federal government, in an emergency, to:

  • Increase transfers to provinces to increase surge health care resources.
  • Find innovative ways to increase surge capacity across the country, for example, emergency accreditation of internationally trained health professionals.
  • Provide support to provinces to increase testing capacity, including rolling out rapid tests to schools, businesses, gymnasiums and public recreation centers.
  • Ensure that breakthrough treatments, like the new Pfizer product, are quickly but efficiently investigated, obtained and distributed to hospitals.
  • Obtain and distribute n95 masks to all Canadians.
  • Assist provinces in providing reminders to Canadians.
  • Strengthen efforts to provide vaccines to countries with limited supplies.

“Canadians want to see an end to lockdowns and an end to restrictions on their freedom. The Conservatives are calling on the government to focus instead on the mental well-being of Canadian society. That’s why today I invited Councilor Wesly Graham of the Town of Cranbrook to join me for a special meeting with Trevor Zak of Fitness Inc. where we discussed the need to end the lockdowns,” Morrison explained.

In the first video, Trevor Zak talks about the trials and tribulations of trying to operate his business under ever-changing conditions due to the pandemic, followed by MP Morrison’s statement.

The second video features MP Morrison and Trevor Zak answering questions from local media, including e-KNOW.

In the third video, Trevor Zak explains why gym owners feel harassed, including pressure from the police.

main picture: Trevor Zak, owner of Fitness Inc., speaks to Kootenay-Columbia MLA Rob Morrison and local media Tuesday morning. Ian Cobb/e-KNOW photos / Carrie Schafer/e-KNOW videos