Sonia Furstenau, MLA for the Cowichan Valley, has announced that she is running for the leadership of the B.C. Green Party. (File photo)

Furstenau announces bid for leadership of the BC Green Party

Cowichan Valley MLA says B.C. needs new style of leadership

Sonia Furstenau, MLA for the Cowichan Valley, has announced she is running to be the next leader of the B.C. Green Party.

Surrounded by supporters in Victoria on Jan. 26, Furstenau said she hopes that her candidacy for the leadership of the party is the beginning of a new era in B.C. politics.

She said the province needs a new style of leadership that listens to evidence and to communities.

“I got into politics because I saw a disconnect between the decisions made at higher levels of government and how they affect peoples’ day-to-day lives,” Furstenau said.

“I have seen time and time again how good ideas get stalled at the provincial level due to old ways of thinking and partisan divisiveness. But the past two and a half years in office have also made it clear to me that it does not have to be this way.”

B.C. Green Party leader Andrew Weaver announced earlier this month that he will step back from his party and sit as an independent as of Jan. 20.

RELATED STORY: ANDREW WEAVER TO STEP AWAY FROM B.C. GREENS, SIT AS INDEPENDENT

The B.C. Greens, who held three seats in the legislature prior to Weaver’s announcement, have an agreement to support the province’s minority NDP government.

The party plans to choose a new leader to replace Weaver this summer.

Furstenau, the former director for Shawnigan Lake on the Cowichan Valley Regional District board, was instrumental in the successful fight by that community to shut down a controversial contaminated soil site located close to the lake.

RELATED STORY: SOIL COMPANIES TO CLOSE SHAWNIGAN CONTAMINATED SOIL QUARRY PERMANENTLY

A press release states that as the MLA for the Cowichan Valley, Furstenau successfully advocated for changes to the child welfare system, worked with the government to make reforms to environmental legislation and to develop childcare and early childhood education programs, and stood up against the government’s tax breaks to the fossil fuel industry.

She has served as the BC Greens’ deputy leader and House Leader in the legislature.

While announcing her bid for the leadership of the party, Furstenau said the province needs a plan for the future that embraces new ideas, and MLAs who have the courage to implement it.

RELATED STORY: FURSTENAU TALKS ISSUES IN NORTH COWICHAN

“We need to embrace solutions to the climate crisis that will improve quality of life and create opportunities for British Columbians,” she said.

“We need to shift away from century-old markers like GDP growth to more meaningful indicators like equality, infrastructure, health and wellbeing. We need to move beyond the tired ideological wars of the 20th century, focus on the concrete outcomes we want to achieve, and work collaboratively to find the best common sense policies to make them happen.”

Furstenau said she intends to begin travelling around the province over the next few months to speak to current and future members and supporters of the party about the future of the Greens in the province.

“The B.C. Green Party has grown by leaps and bounds in the past few years, and since beginning initial conversations about my leadership candidacy, I have spoken with dozens of potential candidates, supporters and members who are excited to bring fresh perspectives and enthusiasm to this campaign,” she said.

Furstenau said she has hired two co-campaign managers to assist with her leadership bid, and has raised more than $12,000 for the campaign so far.



robert.barron@cowichanvalleycitizen.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

BC politics

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Investigators still hoping to solve 2015 Brown homicide case

Tips being sought into Penelakut Island woman’s death five years ago

Editorial: Preventing wildfires more vital than ever in 2020

We are truly our own worst enemies on this file.

Wildfire north of Cowichan Lake now largely under control

Crews have been on the scene since Friday

VIDEO: B.C. conservation officers free not-so-wily coyote with head stuck in jar

Poor pup was found with a glass jar stuck on its head in Maple Ridge

‘Do our lives count for less?’: COVID-19 exposes cracks in disability aid

In July, Parliament approved a $600 payment for people with disabilities facing additional expenses during COVID-19

Agreement between province, BC Hydro, First Nation, ends legal fight over Site C

B.C. will work to improve land management and restore traditional place names in areas of cultural significance

B.C. doctors, dentists call on province for mandatory mask rule

Open letter says masks should be worn in indoor public spaces, public transportation or in crowds

Dwindling B.C. bamboo supply leaves Calgary Zoo biologists worried about pandas

Zoo has been trying to send pandas back to China since May

Facebook launches its new TikTok clone, Instagram Reels

Facebook has a long tradition of cloning competitive services

B.C. Appeal Court prevents Victoria woman from using the term ‘death midwife’ in her job

Pashta MaryMoon claimed she had been providing “death-care services” for more than 40 years

‘We all have anxieties’: B.C.’s top doctor addresses return-to-school fears amid COVID-19

Dr. Bonnie Henry promises school restart plan safe for B.C. kids

Most Read