BY BILL PHILLIPS
The election campaign is now officially on in Prince George-Valemount.
Natalie Fletcher will be carrying the NDP banner into the May 9 election. Liberal Shirley Bond has held the riding since 2001 and is seeking re-election.
Fletcher, a 30-year resident of Prince George is no stranger to politics and has been involved in the political process locally, provincially and nationally.
“I’ve been advocating for people my entire life,” she said Monday, adding that after watching the Liberal government for the past 16 years, she is “ready to jump in,” to politics.
“I’m running as a candidate for the BCNDP because I feel I need to step forward and lead the change I want to see,” she said. “I am tired of seeing British Columbians work harder only to get further behind. We simply cannot afford another four years of the BC Liberals.”
She brings her experience working in health care, running a small local business and being a community advocate to her candidacy.
Fletcher has been busy connecting with the citizens of the constituency and continues to hear their frustrations with Christy Clark and the BC Liberals. She says education, health care and good jobs are the issues she will focus on.
“Our children, seniors and working people deserve better,” she said. “The North deserves better.”
Going up Bond will undoubtedly be a challenge.
“It’s not about (Bond),” she said. “It’s about the track record.”
She pointed to an “entire generation” of students who have gone through the public education system since the Liberals stripped certain bargaining rights from teachers. She also pointed to an “underfunded” health care system as an issue facing the province.
Fletcher is married with two adult children
She will be acclaimed as the BCNDP candidate for the constituency at a March 11 nomination meeting.