VANCOUVER (NEWS1130) – The leader of the NDP says the province should be fighting to keep the Vancouver Coast Guard base open.

BC NDP leader Adrian Dix says the province should be lobbying the federal government to keep the Kitsilano station open, and claims he would be willing to partner with premier Christy Clark on the effort.

“This is a decision that the federal government is going to make and our job as a province is to come together with one voice and say ‘Not this station, not the other cuts, this is not the area of government that we should be cutting back on,’” he stresses.

Dix is suggesting the legislature form a special committee to assess the potential impacts of the closure, which would help backup their argument.

He says the shut down doesn’t make sense, and risks public safety.

“This is something that goes beyond the usual partisan politics, this is basic safety and basic service to people in BC,” he says. “I think people in BC feel pretty strongly about it.”

‘Wall of shame’ erected at station

Plywood boards, much like the ones that appeared at the Bay after last year’s riot, have appeared in front of the Kitsilano Coast Guard station.

‘We need safety on our waters’ and ‘Lives are more important than money’ are just some of the thoughts on display.

“I can’t see why this place needs to place to shut down over a small amount of money they’re going to save,” says one man.

“I can’t believe they would think of doing it,” said another.

“With the amount of boats coming in and out of here, I don’t think it’s a good idea. You have all the tankers in the harbour here. Who’s policing that?” questions a woman strolling through Vanier Park.

“If it’s for an $800,000 cost savings it’s a pittance compared to what the government spends,” argues another bystander.

Premier Christy Clark and Vancouver city councillors also say they are concerned about the closure.

The station is set to shut for good by the end of the summer.