Elections B.C.                                 Boundaries of the Nanaimo-North Cowichan riding.

Elections B.C. Boundaries of the Nanaimo-North Cowichan riding.

Election 2017: Nanaimo-North Cowichan riding profile

Four candidates compete for Nanaimo-North Cowichan seat

  • May. 4, 2017 7:00 p.m.

B.C. Green Party: Lia Versaevel, 61

Small business owner

Lia Versaevel has more than 35 years of experience in conflict resolution, collaborative justice, education and law enforcement, as well as advocacy for the vulnerable.

Versaevel spent 27 years with the B.C. Ministry of the Attorney General before moving to the U.S. in 2004 to work in family mediation. On her return to Vancouver Island in 2013, she re-established her business, Accord Family Mediation Services.

Versaevel is president of Family Mediation Canada, board member of the Chemainus Residents’ Association, vice-president of Ladysmith’s Lions Club, and member of the B.C. Wildlife Federation.

Education, health care, protection of our most vulnerable citizens and the preservation of the Salish Sea will be my priorities as your B.C. Green Party MLA.

In education, I want to end subsidies to private schools, make adult basic education programs free again and restore funding and staff to our public school system.

In health care, I will work to improve Nanaimo’s health services by addressing regional imbalances in the number of specialists, surgery wait-times, and lack of access to GPs. I also want to improve public care for seniors, the disabled and foster children.

Nanaimo has one of the highest rates of child poverty in the province. As your MLA I will work with others in the legislature to implement a basic income, raise the minimum wage and eliminate MSP premiums as part of a multi-faceted poverty reduction strategy.

Lastly, I want to partner with educators, citizens and scientists to establish an international commission, similar to that for the Great Lakes, to protect the Salish Sea, a complex, diverse ecosystem home to nearly nine million people.

Greens believe in working cooperatively and by consensus to achieve our goals. I will work with every resident, all communities and across parties to advocate for my priorities.

Independent: Anna Paddon, 44

Health care and transportation are important to me. I will present as many private-public member bills to the legislature and motions as needed to attain the goals of eliminating homelessness, poverty and an aim for all B.C.ers to have a life that is above the cost of living. To achieve this I will immediately submit a member bill to attain changes to the labour laws of B.C. for paid sick leave and increased minimum wage.

I have attended two mini UNs during college, one at SFU on the constitution and one at Capilano College on war crimes. I have worked at many jobs in B.C, my first as I attended secondary school in Lillooet. After graduation I worked as a substitute teacher in the secondary school as I worked at the local hospital in housekeeping.

During my candidacy and my priorities as MLA for Nanaimo-North Cowichan, I will also work to reduce some regulations, to seek incentives to promote manufacturing and large business in Nanaimo-North Cowichan. We need to attract manufacturing jobs, large and small business to our community.

We are competing in a global economy that wants industry, too. With strategies that are innovative, we will increase economic growth and job creation in Nanaimo North Cowichan.

The IMCP in the U.S., 2013, worked. I will seek ways to enhance our community and to use federal economic development funds to do this with provincial and private funds. We will focus on attracting investments and transforming into a manufacturing centre.

B.C. Liberals: Alana DeLong

Everything starts with a strong economy creating good jobs for families. The B.C. Liberals have delivered on this across the province, and I believe we have enormous untapped potential in Nanaimo and the North Cowichan.

Instead of stopping log exports as some parties are proposing, what we need is to support well-paying jobs in forestry. One way to do this is to add value to our logs here by producing cross-laminated wood from our abundant hemlock.

Another priority is to ensure secure water supplies across the riding.

I have been impressed by the vision of local business leaders and look forward to working with them on game-changing projects like an expansion of the port at Duke Point to make it a global entry point for trade and a creator of well-paying jobs.

I plan to do what I have always done as a hard-working constituency MLA and that is advocate for my constituents’ priorities first as I have always held that they are my 40,000 bosses. I want to be your voice in Victoria, a reasonable and determined voice that knows how to press the right buttons and pull the right levers to get this area the support it so badly needs.

I want to be a reasonable and determined voice that knows how to press the right buttons and pull the right levers to get this area the support it so badly needs.

NDP: Doug Routley, 56

Incumbent MLA

I was born in New Westminster on May 9, 1961. I grew up in Duncan and attended the public schools of the Cowichan Valley. I attended Camosun College before traveling to Japan, where I lived and worked for one year.

My work experience is diverse so I believe this gives me very broad understanding of the lives and challenges of the people of Nanaimo North Cowichan. I have worked as a logger, sawmill worker, tree planter, construction worker, ESL teacher in Japan, small business owner, school custodian, union rep, school trustee and MLA since 2005.

My priority is to work as hard as I can to help make life more affordable for the people of Nanaimo-North Cowichan.

John Horgan and the B.C. NDP will cut costs for families. People are working hard, but they just can’t get ahead. The B.C. NDP plan to make life more affordable includes $10-a-day childcare, a $15 minimum wage, affordable ferry fares, and an end to MSP premiums. We will protect and enhance public health care, not privatize it like the Liberals will.

I will go to bat for students by making sure kids have teachers and the resources they need. Together, we can fix our schools and give our kids every opportunity to grow and succeed.

Candidates’ submissions were condensed for the print edition. To read the full riding profile, please visit www.nanaimobulletin.com. The provincial general election is May 9.

Nanaimo News Bulletin

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