A theme with the candidates has emerged: how to combine growing the economy while protecting the environment in the resource-rich riding of Stikine. BC Liberal candidate Wanda Good is deputy chief of Gitanyow First Nation.
She said protecting the environment is the top priority, but that she will be a strong advocate for development.
“There is a sense of impatience within the constituency for when are the jobs going to happen. Although we’re making progress, there is some impatience on getting things going and being engaged in being the leading economy of Canada,” said Good. “That’s my main platform, to fight for the jobs.”
She added that the environment can be protected during LNG, forestry and mining projects by the government setting clear guidelines and engaging with investors. And Good has experience in the energy sector. She was with TransCanada Pipelines in Calgary for over five years starting in the year 2000. She said she was employed in the company’s information systems, governance and security department. Before that, she was engaged with Gitanyow leadership.
“That has provided an opportunity for inter-governmental relations at all levels: federal, provincial, municipal, and first nations,” said Good.
While working at TransCanada, Good attended the University of Lethbridge to study Business Management with a minor in Corporate Social Responsibility. All this work and education was done as a single mother.
“With the intent of coming back to the area and adding value to the communities here,” said Good. She also pointed to experience as a deputy chief working with the First Nations Health Authority, and the BC Transit expansion for Highway 16. Equity in things like health care and transit is something she stressed needed to happen.
“After being an advocate for providing safety along this infamous Highway of Tears — I’ve been an advocate for 20-plus years, since my cousin went missing, Lana Derrick — we’re now realizing safe transportation. And the work continues of course because I will continue working on providing advocacy as well in bringing in the services for vulnerable citizens along our highway corridor here,” she said.
Good believes being a BC Liberal MLA if elected would be an advantage in making those things happen.
“I feel like we’re on the outside looking in … Currently our MLA is sitting [with the] NDP in the legislature, and we’re finding that poses a challenge in moving forward with jobs and with opportunities for families to provide for those we love,” she said.