My Bulkleylakesnow reached out to each of the candidates in the Stikine candidates for their response to the following questions:
- What are the most important issues facing the residents in your riding and how would you address them?
- Tell the voters why you are the best candidate to represent your riding?
In alphabetical order (last name):
Candidate #1- Nathan Cullen, New Democrat Party (NDP)
He served as a Member of Parliament for the Skeena-Bulkley Valley for 15 years and was named Parliamentarian of the Year multiple times. Nathan helped create laws to ban asbestos and keep the northwest free of fish farms and oil tankers.
- Continuing to deal with the effects of the pandemic and keeping people safe while building back our economy better than it was. Building better relations between Indigenous people and those who have settled here over generations is critical to all our futures. We can only make progress on the environment, creating good jobs, and protecting good public services if we do it together.
- I have the relationships and experience to help drive these conversations at the local and provincial levels. We have all the resources and people we need to create the kind of future we want for our kids and grandkids.
Candidate #2- Darcy Repen, Rural BC Party
He used to be the mayor of Telkwa and refocused the Village’s financial funding.
1.I believe the most important election issue facing the residents in our riding is the lack of direct representation from our MLA. We are of secondary importance to our government in Victoria. Whether it’s health care, infrastructure funding, meaningful indigenous engagement, economic development, resource revenue sharing, environmental issues, housing, or a whole host of other issues, the truth remains the same. Any NDP or Liberal MLA in the Stikine will prioritize toeing their party line once elected, with the specific concerns and needs of the people who elected them immediately forgotten. I’ll address each of these issues by developing logical and well-researched strategies in collaboration with those in our region who know them best, and I’ll present them with passion and persistence in the Legislature. I proved my ability to do it successfully for Telkwa during my term as Mayor. Since stepping down the last election, I have spent a lot of time and energy pursuing our NDP MLA on these issues, but unless directed by their party, they’ve ignored them to preserve their own political interests. For over a year I tried to engage our current MLA, Doug Donaldson, on the issues of rural ICBC rate disparity. Because it was a raw nerve for his government, he straight-up refused to answer or engage, much less support my campaign for change on behalf of his residents.
2. If elected, I’ll stand up for Stikine residents first, and electing me would send the strongest statement to Victoria. The people of the Stikine matter!
Candidate #3- Gordon Sebastian, BC Liberal Party
He used to be a lawyer and practiced law privately until 2009. Gordon is a Hereditary Chief Simogyat Luutkudziiwus and an Executive Director in Gitxsan Government.
1.It’s time for a very people-first approach. Our people in the Stikine need jobs, quality healthcare, social support, and access to education. We need to jumpstart the economy and if elected I want to focus on delivering economic recovery for our resource industries that meet the indigenous agenda with a priority placed on protecting our environment. In addition, I want to promote the area’s celestial and diverse landscape and market our potential in becoming a filming hotspot, farming, and green energy projects like biomass heating plants and wind energy. I will fight to deliver the best environmental practices, restore our industries, open up new opportunities for business, and return badly-needed jobs – jobs that will make a difference for working men, women, and families.
2. I am new to the political environment so I’m not an experienced politician which I think is an advantage to the residents of the area as it’s not about industry or politics for me. It’s about doing the right thing for the people and ensuring the area is flourishing economically, environmentally, and socially. I know our people are keen on creating a healthy and active area which means investing in infrastructure for biking, hiking, and skiing. It means providing proper compensation for our front-line workers in healthcare and ensuring they have the tools and resources to be successful and provide quality care for all especially amid the COVID-19 pandemic. It also means using police resources in a positive way and not wasting taxpayer dollars on indigenous land issues. It means bridging the gap between government and First Nations so no force is necessary, to begin with. I am focused on people first and always.
Candidate #4- Rod Taylor, Christian Heritage Party
Rod Taylor was born in Minneapolis, Minnesota. He was exposed to political activism at a young age as his family was active in the Civil Rights movement, seeking equality for black Americans. He moved with his parents to British Columbia in 1968 and he married Elaine in 1974. They have two children and four grandchildren. Rod has worked with his hands most of his life, primarily in the lumber industry, but also on farms and in other industries. Rod has been active in both provincial and federal politics, running three times in provincial elections and eight times federally. In 2010, he oversaw the formation of CHP-BC, the first provincial wing of the Christian Heritage Party. In November 2014, Rod became the National Leader of CHP Canada.
- Peaceful and respectful resolution of indigenous governance questions and shared land stewardship: First Nations communities must be given the opportunity to democratically resolve for themselves who will represent them in negotiations and governance. Indigenous and non-indigenous citizens must find ways to share in responsibly caring for the land. Responsible resource development: focus on primary processing of resources in British Columbia rather than raw exports of wood fibre and ore. Create more opportunities for small-scale local businesses to access marginal timber stands. Safe and satisfactory completion of energy transportation projects (pipelines). This requires leadership in Victoria and cooperation from all stakeholders. School choice (voucher system): allow parents to direct education dollars for their children so that they can afford the schools best suited to them.Parental rights to guide their own children over provincially-mandated social ideology, especially in regard to the SOGI curriculum (the teaching of gender fluidity). Conscience rights for medical professionals: BC must stop trying to force palliative care facilities to participate in assisted suicide protocols. Doctors and nurses must not be forced to participate in abortions or euthanasia against their consciences. Food security: Protection of agricultural land; better product labeling and better access to farmgate sales.
- We have had 4 years of NDP-style socialism in BC. Debts are up. Pipelines and responsible development are down. The Premier and his Education Minister have tried to crush good men and women like school trustee Barry Neufeld who was pressured to quit because he raised legitimate concerns about the SOGI curriculum in the schools. Young people are being given puberty-blockers and hormone therapies that cause irreversible changes and often render them sterile for life but parents are forbidden to speak about these things with their own children. Biological males are being given access to women’s washrooms, change rooms, shower facilities, even prisons. Males are competing unfairly against women in sports competition. It’s the same with the Health Minister. Adrian Dix is trying to force the Delta Hospice Society to end the lives of seniors in its care. This dictatorial abuse of power is a hallmark of the NDP top-down socialist approach. The province has instituted fear-induced and business-killing COVID lockdowns in response to the Wuhan virus; healthy children and young adults are being compelled to wear oxygen-reducing masks in spite of evidence that young people are not at risk of serious harm from the virus; herd immunity will benefit everyone. Meanwhile, those seriously at risk are not being given life-saving remedies—like hydroxychloroquine—that are being successfully used in Africa. I offer voters the CHP platform based on Life! Family! and Freedom! I will fight for your rights!
Election day is Saturday (Oct 24) from 8 a.m. until 8 p.m. For a complete list of the polling stations in the riding go to the Elections BC website.