A past Pride president and a women’s rights activist and muralist is ready to raise her voice on a whole host of issues now.
Lauren Semple announced this week that she will be seeking the federal NDP nomination for the Nanaimo-Ladysmith riding.
She has been event director for the last three Nanaimo Pride festivals, an organizer of the Nanaimo Women March On events the last two years, and was co-founder of Humanity in Community, which led the mural project at the old A&B Sound building.
She has been a constituency assistant to former Nanaimo-Ladysmith MP Sheila Malcolmson, and worked on Malcolmson’s campaign to become Nanaimo MLA.
Semple announced Sunday via Facebook that she’s running to be the NDP candidate, and said in a video she posted that she immediately received a “total outpouring” of support.
“I am so, so humbled by everyone’s support and the possibility at having an opportunity to serve our beautiful constituency in Ottawa,” she said.
In her introductory post, she outlined a few priorities, saying there’s a need for substantial investments in housing and healthcare and action on the climate crisis and income inequality. In a press release, she called for change that shifts policies, funding and focus on “everyday people,” not just the super rich and well-connected.
“Canadians, they deserve more than broken promises and empty apologies,” she said. “It’s clear that the government in Ottawa is not working for us, it’s not working for everyday people, it’s not working for our planet and it’s time to change that.”
According to the Nanaimo-Ladysmith federal NDP electoral district association, Chief Bob Chamberlin has also been approved as a contestant, others have put their names forward as well, and the nomination period has not yet closed.
No byelection has been called, but all other major parties in Nanaimo-Ladysmith have candidates in place: John Hirst, Conservative Party of Canada; Michelle Corfield, Liberal Party of Canada; Paul Manly, Green Party of Canada; and Jennifer Clarke, People’s Party of Canada.