No way to pay for health care

Re: WinFall lottery at ‘dire’ risk of losing money, Oct. 13.

Editor:

Re: WinFall lottery at ‘dire’ risk of losing money, Oct. 13.

I am not surprised that the WinFall lottery and possibly other charities are in financial shortfall.

Several other lotteries, people’s running, cycling, paddling to be sponsored, daily phone calls and requests by mail, famine in Somalia, all looking for the public for funding.

There is no doubt of the needs or the validity of cause, but perhaps we have reached a point of overload? And we are just before Christmas, with yet another onslaught of pleas for giving, while all of us are concerned about the shaky economy.

I would also consider the possibility that people realize how small a fraction of lottery revenues go to the charity after deducting expenses, and may choose direct contribution with tax deductibility.

Here is a novel suggestion: why not increase taxes to cover the finances of all such human and social necessities, instead of having them pursue a form of panhandling?

George Zador, Surrey

• • •

To anyone who lives in B.C. and remembers the first Surrey Memorial Lottery way back when, today’s huge raft of lotteries is just overwhelming.

When you look at the amount of advertising that comes in glossy brochures through the mail, that appears on nightly television news broadcasts and takes out full-page advertisements in the daily paper, you wonder how on earth these lotteries can even afford to give away $2-3 million dollars worth of prizes.

The odds of winning are so limited, anyone with a free $100 bill would do better to invest it in the 6/49.

If our government funded our hospitals and bought them new machinery when needed, we wouldn’t have fundraising lotteries – our taxes will be working for us.

As it is, expenses for the lottery advertising, overheads and salaries for the organizing staff must make a huge dent in what actually comes in from purchasers of tickets.

Obviously, this time, there is a much better chance of winning when the numbers of tickets purchased is so low, but if it means nothing at all for the hospital, then I urge fundraisers to come up with some new ideas. You are flogging a dead and budget-conscious horse in the general public.

Sheila Gair, Surrey

• • •

How can Peace Arch Hospital and Community Health Foundation executive director Jackie Smith – or anybody – be surprised that there will be a shortage of money in the WinFall lottery?

At any given time there are at least three lotteries going. Who can afford to purchase them?

The winning prices are also too high. Why not give smaller ones and more of them; why million-dollar ones instead of less, so more people can enjoy a win?

Very few could afford these properties anyway, considering the taxes and upkeep. There are many people who dream, “Oh, when I win this house I will move in and enjoy.”

But when you mention the taxes they will have to pay: “Oh, I never thought of that.”

Hans Schmidt, Surrey

 

 

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