September 12, 2022
Failure by Vancouver mayoral candidate Kennedy Stewart to participate leads CVN to cancel debate September 19 (Mon)
Vancouver, B.C. – Decisions by Forward Vancouver’s Kennedy Stewart (incumbent) and ABC Vancouver’s Ken Sim not to participate in the Coalition of Vancouver Neighbourhoods’ mayoral candidate debate scheduled for Monday September 19 (link here), has led CVN to make the difficult decision to cancel the event just one week before the event.
Co-organizer Larry Benge said, “Our audience would have wanted to hear and compare the views and policies of incumbent Kennedy Stewart and his leading challengers. With both Mr. Stewart and Mr. Sim failing to participate, the value and appeal of the event would be significantly reduced.” Co-organizer Dorothy Barkley added, “The message to Vancouver voters is a warning sign that Stewart and Sim do not really care about neighbourhoods and neighbourhood groups.”
In mid-August, CVN secured the Britannia Community Centre as a venue and started lining up the leading mayoral contenders for the candidate’s debate for the Oct. 15 civic election. Trevor Ford of ABC Vancouver’s campaign wrote on Sept. 9 that Mr. Sim would not participate, while Mr. Stewart’s Forward Vancouver campaign failed to respond at all. Candidates who had confirmed their attendance included Colleen Hardwick (TEAM for a Livable Vancouver), Mark Marissen (Progress Vancouver), and Fred Harding (NPA Vancouver).
The debate was to be moderated by Kirk LaPointe, the publisher and editor-in-chief of Business in Vancouver, exploring each candidate’s views and giving them a chance to highlight their party’s policies on crucial issues affecting neighbourhoods, including community engagement, development planning, public safety, housing affordability, homelessness, and more.
Coalition of Vancouver Neighbourhoods (CVN) is the umbrella organization for 22 residents’ associations and groups across almost the entire city. Their members include thousands of voters who are keenly interested in the future of their community.
Key election dates: October 1, 5, 8, 11, 13 (advance voting days), October 15 (Election Day)
Mayoral candidates Ken Sim and Kennedy Stewart duck a second debate
(Charlie Smith, September 12, 2022, Georgia Straight)
Excerpt: … Let this be a message to any civic politician who doesn’t think that participating in debates is part of their job.