A call for more women in local government

Current councillor hosts a 'first-time' forum for potential candidates

Parksville city councillor Carrie Powell-Davidson wants to see more women enter local government.

In an effort to make this happen, Powell-Davidson hosted a ‘first-time’ forum March 26 at the Bayside Resort, bringing together elected officials and those looking to enter political life.

“(Elected positions in government) are the only jobs you can get with virtually no experience but they are the most important jobs in the community,” said Powell-Davidson.

The meeting saw a panel of local politicians speak candidly about their experiences in government as well as answer questions from the audience. The panel included Qualicum Beach town Coun. Mary Brouilette, RDN director Bill Veenhof and Nanaimo Coun. Diane Brennan.

One of the eight attendees, 38-year-old Megan Olsen, said she came to the event because she sees a need for more women and young people to get involved in government.

Olsen said she plans on running for Parksville city council in the upcoming election Nov. 15.

“We need to start getting young families back into our community,” said Olsen, on why she wants to run for council. “I also think Parksville lacks art and culture and I want to change that.”

Additionally, owner of Pacific Brimm Cafe Teresa Patterson came to the event as she also sees “a need for more women in government at the local level.”

Patterson said she is thinking about running for a seat on city council again, but was reluctant to make an official statement.

As for current councillor Powell-Davidson, some may wonder why she’s calling for more people to throw their names in the political ring considering she could very well unseat herself.

“It’s about closing the gap,” said Powell-Davidson. “But it’s also about getting the best people to represent our communities.”

Powell-Davidson said she does intend on running for re-election this fall and she wants to see a strong council alongside her — if she wins back her seat.

“I want to ensure that whether you are male or female, young or old that you’re the best person for the job,” she said.

Powell-Davidson said she will offer what she called “campaign schools” this fall for people who have decided to run for election.

According to Powell-Davidson, she will host two workshops consisting of classroom work, networking opportunities, communication tools, lessons on working with the media, public speaking and post-election tools geared towards people looking at political life.

“I suppose in a way this is helping create my competition,” said Powell-Davidson. “But I love Parksville and if the electorate sees other people as better candidates then so be it.”

 

Just Posted

Police go on hunt for distracted drivers in Parksville Qualicum Beach

One motorist ticketed for not wearing a seatbelt and using a cellphone while driving

Motorists attempted CPR on victim in fatal Highway 4 crash west of Whiskey Creek

Witnesses say three vehicles involved in collision; man in 70s confirmed dead

More units added to Parksville’s Corfield site

Supportive housing project progressing rapidly

Unique type of rock show at Parksville beach

WATCH: Rock art from youngsters and adults alike on display

Stolen Bentley spotted going wrong way down highway found in Summerland

The car has been recorded going the wrong way on the Coquihalla, found two days later

Illegal cannabis club in Port Alberni ticketed again

RCMP seize cannabis, issue fine for second time in five months

Motorcyclist dies after three-vehicle crash on old Island Highway

Accident happened at 12:15 p.m. Friday near Country Club Centre in Nanaimo

1,300 cruise ship passengers rescued by helicopter amid storm off Norway’s coast

Rescue teams with helicopters and boats were sent to evacuate the cruise ship under extremely difficult circumstances

B.C. university to offer first graduate program on mindfulness in Canada

University of the Fraser Valley says the mostly-online program focuses on self-care and well being

Province announces $18.6 million for B.C. Search and Rescue

The funding, spread over three years, to pay for operations, equipment, and training

Late-season wave of the flu makes its round in B.C.

BC Centre for Disease Control reported 50 per cent jump in flu cases in first weeks of March

Tofino’s housing crisis causing some to seek shelter at the local hospital

Tofino’s housing crisis is pushing the town’s ‘hidden homeless’ population into the forefront.

Sentencing judge in Broncos crash calls for carnage on highways to end

Judge Inez Cardinal sentenced Jaskirat Singh Sidhu to eight years

Most Read