Nanaimo MLA Sheila Malcolmson takes her oaths of office virtually on Thursday. (B.C. Government YouTube screen shot)

Nanaimo MLA Sheila Malcolmson takes her oaths of office virtually on Thursday. (B.C. Government YouTube screen shot)

Nanaimo MLA Sheila Malcolmson named B.C.’s mental health and addictions minister

Malcolmson succeeds Judy Darcy, who did not seek re-election

Nanaimo’s MLA is taking on more provincewide responsibility as a member of cabinet.

Sheila Malcolmson was announced Thursday afternoon as B.C.’s minister of mental health and addictions. She succeeds Judy Darcy in heading the ministry, created by the previous NDP government in 2017.

Malcolmson, in a social media post, said she’s honoured to be appointed to her position and said she will “carry with great respect” the work that has been done on the file and rely on the wisdom of people on the front lines of the mental health and addictions crisis.

“Nanaimo was hit early and hard by the overdose crisis, and I’ve been learning from advocates and people with lived experience here in my community about the impact of the crisis. People are hurting,” Malcolmson said. “As COVID exploits every vulnerability, the pandemic has made everything about mental health and overdoses worse, and I feel the weight of the responsibility the premier has given me.”

B.C.’s Lt.-Gov. Janet Austin installed B.C. Premier John Horgan and members of the executive council in a ceremony in Victoria. For more on B.C.’s next cabinet, click here.

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editor@nanaimobulletin.com

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