Rod Taylor is the first ever Christian Heritage Party of British Columbia candidate to step forward to run in the upcoming provincial election.
Taylor, a resident of Smithers since 1987, is running for the party in the Stikine riding.
He has run in the area unsuccessfully for the Christian Heritage Party in past federal elections and said he has been interested in politics from a young age.
“I’ve always had an interest in the political realm,” Taylor said.
“My Dad was involved in the Civil Rights movement in the United States.
“He marched with Martin Luther King Jr. during the Selma to Montgomery march so I was introduced early.
“We had the privilege of having a lot of interesting people in our home.”
CHP BC is a relatively new political entity, having just, on April 6, ratified their policies and constitution in a meeting in Telkwa.
The party is an off-shoot of the federal Christian Heritage Party.
Taylor spent much of his working life in the forest industry, starting out piling lumber and working his way up to quality control and grading.
The CHP BC’s policies centre around family as the building block of society, Taylor said.
“The family in Canada is in trouble,” he said.
“We can see that in terms of separations, single parenting and poverty.
“I think that many people are familiar with our basic concepts of justice, protection of innocent life, protection of family and marriage and protection of free speech.
“We’ll continue to advance those concerns.”
Creating jobs in the region is a top priority for Taylor, but not at all costs.
Taylor said he has three main reasons for opposing the Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline: because outstanding First Nations issues have yet to be resolved, he is opposed to the export of raw resources and he also has environmental concerns.
“We believe in industry but I have taken a strong position in opposition to the Enbridge pipeline,” Taylor said.
“We need God’s blessing on our economy.
“We can’t do things in a manner that’s contrary to His way and expect our economy to be thriving.
“Some people want to separate economic issues from moral issues but they are inextricably intertwined.”
He is also in favour of democratic reform, meaning the direct election of the Premier, preferential balloting and free voting in the Legislature.
Outside of politics, Taylor has served as a board member for the Bulkley Valley District Hospital, is Past President of the Bulkley Forest Products Association, is a founding member of the Bulkley Valley Community Resource Board and sits on the board of the Smithers Pro-Life Society.
Taylor has taken on the role of acting leader of the CHP BC during the election campaign and also serves as the Deputy Leader of the national CHP.