Libby in the News

Links to news articles written by or about Libby Davies.

  • Push For NDP To Embrace Leap Manifesto Intensifies Ahead Of Party's Convention

    Now, as Mulcair's leadership is up for debate and the party questions its own identity and direction, key New Democrats are pushing the Leap Manifesto principles into the mix. Former MPs Libby Davies and Craig Scott, as well as the head of the influential Toronto-Danforth riding association and documentary filmmaker Avi Lewis, are circulating a plan to entrench the manifesto's ideas. But they don't foresee a wholesale adoption of the manifesto all at once. Rather, they ask that the federal NDP embrace values contained in the manifesto, but at the same time launch an internal process that will allow a thorough debate by its members.

  • NDP 'Leap Manifesto' backers intensify push ahead of convention

    Now, as Mulcair's leadership is up for debate and the party questions its own identity and direction, key New Democrats are pushing the Leap Manifesto principles into the mix. Former MPs Libby Davies and Craig Scott, as well as the head of the influential Toronto-Danforth riding association and documentary filmmaker Avi Lewis, are circulating a plan to entrench the manifesto's ideas. But they don't foresee a wholesale adoption of the manifesto all at once. Rather, they're proposing a two-step process: first, have New Democrats at this week's convention approve a resolution declaring that the manifesto is "a high-level statement of principles that is in line with the aspirations, history and values of the party." If that passes, they're proposing another resolution calling for meaningful debate of the manifesto by riding associations, leading up to a full, detailed discussion on how to implement it at the next convention in 2018.

  • 2016 NDP Leadership : Mulcair faces tough battle to remain NDP leader

    The Leap Manifesto The Leap Manifesto is a document asserting support for indigenous rights, environmental protection and economic reform. First conceived in spring 2015 after Toronto meetings among many like-minded activists and advocates, it’s been signed by famous Canadians, like David Suzuki, Judy Rebick and Naomi Klein, and endorsed by organizations including Black Lives Matter Toronto and CUPE Ontario. What complicates matters for Mulcair is that it has also been embraced by more than a dozen NDP riding associations. The party will consider hundreds of resolutions submitted by riding associations and commission across the country, and that will include the Leap Manifesto itself, which has nearly 35,000 signatories so far. The Vancouver East NDP riding association, along with former MP Libby Davies, has proposed a resolution similar to the manifesto. Former MP Craig Scott told The Canadian Press late last month he plans to promote a resolution adopted by his Toronto-Danforth riding association that uses the Leap Manifesto as a starting point for policy discussion. Though he welcomed the input of new ideas, Mulcair himself didn’t officially endorse the manifesto when it was released in September. But given the support the Leaf Manifesto has within his party, along with the push by some in the NDP to orient the party more solidly to the left, he will likely have to address it.

  • Thalidomide vote proved that Parliament matters

    Tuesday marks the first anniversary of something unique in Ottawa. On Dec. 1, 2014, the House of Commons voted 256 to 0 to offer full support to Canada's victims of thalidomide. On the anniversary of the historic vote, and with a new Parliament about to convene later this week, we can now share a bit more of the behind-the-scenes effort. There are lessons for parliamentarians, the most important being that the campaign's success would not have occurred without the support and hard work of regular MPs. For many, the campaign to support Canada's thalidomide survivors must have seemed easy. The vote itself – rare and historic in many respects – came within one week of the public campaign being launched. Within 100 days, there was a second major success when the government announced immediate funding to address the urgent needs of survivors. And within six months, the entire funding support package of at least $180-million was created. How did this happen so quickly?

  • Macleans: Libby Davies leaves Ottawa

    On the first day of the new Parliament in 1997, Libby Davies found herself walking to the Senate to hear the Speech from the Throne, a tradition she was not entirely familiar with, and in the immediate vicinity of Allan Rock, the newly appointed minister of health. Davies—a former city councillor in Vancouver, co-founder of the Downtown Eastside Resident Association and a long-time activist in Canada’s most infamous neighbourhood—wanted then to talk to Rock about what havoc heroin was wrecking in her riding. “I introduced myself and I said, ‘Can I come and meet you? This is a life-and-death issue; people are dying of drug overdoses; we’ve got to stop criminalizing them; we need help,’ ” Davies recalls. Rock, she says, said he was delighted to meet her and that she could come and see him any time. “So I thought, ‘Well, this is amazing,’ ” Davies says. “I got back to my office and we wrote an email. We wrote a letter; we started phoning. Of course, they totally ignored us,” she continues. “After about a month or so, I thought, ‘Well, what would I do in my neighbourhood? How would I handle this?’ And I thought, ‘Okay, I know what I would do.’ So I went to his office and I walked in and I sat down and I said, ‘I’ve been trying to get an appointment for over a month. You haven’t replied, so I just want to let you know I’m not leaving until I get an appointment.’ ” She smiled, then took a seat.

  • 2015 Grace MacInnis Visiting Scholar lecture at SFU: Libby Davies "GRASSROOTS POLITICS IN PARLIAMENT

    Chanel Klein talks to retiring MP Libby Davies about her hopes, history and recommendations during this incredibly contentious 2015 election. Davies gave the 2015 GRACE MACINNIS VISITING SCHOLAR LECTURE: "GRASSROOTS POLITICS IN PARLIAMENT" on Sept 14, 2015 aired on Community Forum OCt 1, 2015 music: "Power in the Blood" @buffy-sainte-marie-1

  • PBS Interview: Canadian court OKs doctor-assisted suicide, but who’s eligible

    In March, Canada's Supreme Court ruled unanimously that all Canadians have a constitutional right to have doctors help them die. Special correspondent John Larson reports from British Columbia on how doctors, patients and politicians are grappling with how to set rules and eligibility in the next year JOHN LARSON: A member of parliament, Libby Davies, has supported right-to-die issues. She says, despite the court’s ruling, the current government may delay any new law until after the national elections next October. Click to listen or read the full interview.

  • Canada’s top court set to rule on B.C. assisted suicide case

    OTTAWA — The Supreme Court of Canada will be in the spotlight Friday as it deals with the latest in series of divisive issues that is rooted in B.C. social policy battles. Canada’s highest court is set to rule on whether the criminal prohibition against anyone who assists a suicide — vigorously defended by Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s Conservatives — violates the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. One of the issues being argued is whether Parliament, or appointed judges, should decide such complex issues. A handful of B.C. MPs surveyed on that question Wednesday were naturally split along party lines.

  • B.C. MPs recall terror on the day a gunman stormed Parliament Hill

    Police shouted. Glass shattered. Doors were barricaded as hundreds of people hid in their offices on Parliament Hill two months ago. A picture of the chaotic scene has been revealed by NDP Vancouver-East MP Libby Davies after a masked gunman stormed the Centre Block building in Ottawa on Oct. 22. “SWAT teams made a hell of a commotion. Police came to office doors. If nobody answered, they banged the door down. Staffers were lying on the floor with guns pointed at their heads,” she said. Davies says authorities spent 12 hours securing the area, checking every nook and cranny in the six-storey, Gothic-style edifice. She says the authorities had no time for niceties as they went about their grim business.

  • 'Time to call it a day': Downtown Eastside activist and long-time NDP MP Libby Davies won't seek re-election

    Libby Davies, the Downtown Eastside activist who found herself catapulted into Ottawa as a federal Member of Parliament, is calling it quits after 40 years of public service The outspoken MP announced today at her campaign office that she will not seek re-election in the upcoming federal election, saying she doesn't have the energy to run again and "it's time to pass the torch." "I just feel like it's time to call it a day," she said. "There can be a new voice for East Vancouver." The decision is bittersweet for Davies, 61, who said she loves her job and is grateful to the people in her riding of Vancouver East for helping her tackle tough issues in the Downtown Eastside such as housing, safe injection sites and the plight of missing women, despite being told she wouldn't get re-elected if she took on those issues.

  • Deputy NDP leader Libby Davies will not seek re-election

    Veteran Member of Parliament and deputy leader of the NDP, Libby Davies, will not be running for re-election. Ms. Davies, 61, was first elected as the MP for Vancouver East in 1997 and was re-elected five times. She made the announcement Friday at her constituency office. "I'm a bit tired," Ms. Davies said during a news conference in her constituency office, when asked why she was retiring from federal politics. Adding in stints in municipal politics, Ms. Davies noted she has been in public life for almost 40 years. She ran twice for Vancouver city council in the 1970s and was elected to parks board in 1980 and elected to city council in 1980. "I really feel it's time to call it a day. It's really a personal decision just about timing and contemplating if I want to go in another election and realizing once we have the election and, hopefully if I had been re-elected, it would be possibly another four years." The former Vancouver city councillor is known as a strong voice for the left wing of the NDP. In addition to serving as one of three deputy leaders to party leader Thomas Mulcair, Ms. Davies is also the party's health critic.

  • Libby Davies, NDP Deputy Leader, Won't Run Again In 2015

    VANCOUVER- NDP stalwart Libby Davies announced Friday she will not seek re-election next year. After 40 years in public life, both as an MP and city councillor, the veteran Vancouver MP said: "It just felt like it's time to call it a day.'' The 61-year-old has represented the riding of Vancouver East since 1997, winning six consecutive federal elections. Her decision is a blow for New Democrats.

  • Libby Davies, NDP deputy leader, won't run in 2015

    NDP deputy leader Libby Davies says that after 40 years of public service, including 18 years as a member of Parliament for Vancouver East, it's time for her to move on. "I know it's time for me to pass the torch. I will not be seeking re-election in the next federal election," Davies said in a written statement Friday. The long-time NDP MP thanked her constituents for electing her even as she took on difficult policy issues over the years. "I have taken on tough issues, like the need for drug policy reform and I remember being told, 'You'll never get re-elected if you take on issues like this.' "But the people of East Vancouver have stood by me," she said. Davies, who is also the party's health critic, was recently credited for pushing forward with an NDP Opposition motion to help thalidomide survivors, which received unanimous support in the House of Commons earlier this month.

  • NDP deputy leader Libby Davies won’t run in 2015

    Libby Davies, the NDP MP for Vancouver East for since 1997, won’t be running for the party in the 2015 federal election. Currently the party’s deputy leader and health critic, Davies made the announcement from her constituency office in Vancouver, saying that after 18 years as the riding’s MP it was simply time to call it a day. “It has been the most extraordinary experience to represent the people of Vancouver East. I have loved my work both in the community and in Ottawa and I thank the good folks of East Vancouver who elected me six times as their representative,” she said in her official statement. “Over the years, I have taken on tough issues like the need for drug policy reform and I remember being told, ‘You’ll never get re-elected if you take on issues like this.’ But the people of East Vancouver have stood by me. I deeply appreciate how they have placed their support and confidence in me throughout my many years in office.” Davies concluded her statement by calling Thomas Muclair a “a strong and committed leader” and adding that she was confident he would help the party form the country’s first social democratic government.

  • Ebola outbreak: NDP wants details on emergency plan for Canada

    New Democrats are asking the federal government to be more transparent about the steps being taken to prevent an Ebola outbreak in Canada and to produce a vaccine for the deadly virus. NDP health critic Libby Davies has written Health Minister Rona Ambrose, arguing that Canadians need to be kept well-informed in order to maintain confidence in the Public Health Agency's ability to handle the crisis. Canadians, she writes, should "feel certain that we are well-equipped to deal with the scope of the crisis in West Africa and the potential of an outbreak here in Canada." Davies specifically asks Ambrose to answer some specific questions, such as who is responsible for ensuring quarantine and treatment protocols in hospitals and who is responsible for ensuring health workers have the appropriate equipment.

  • NDP calls on Conservatives to approve six initiatives to promote equal rights for LGBTQ community

    Vancouver East NDP MP Libby Davies calls it the "NDP gay agenda". In an interview with the Georgia Straight from Ottawa, the veteran parliamentarian said that her party has brought forward six measures to advance equal rights for the LGBTQ community. "What we're saying with these initiatives is that although Canada has had many victories and many milestones, it's not over yet and there's still work to be done," Davies said. "We want to draw attention to that." The NDP held a news conference today in Ottawa to announce these measures, which comes just two days before the start of the WorldPride 2014 Toronto festival.

  • NDP concerned politics will interfere in keeping Insite open

    VANCOUVER (NEWS1130) – Vancouver’s safe injection site is waiting on Ottawa to renew their exemption from the Controlled Drug and Substances Act once again, but the Federal NDP health critic is concerned politics will get in the way of keeping the doors open. Even though the Supreme Court of Canada ruled in 2011 Ottawa must allow the safe injection site to continue operating, Vancouver-East Member of Parliament Libby Davies says recent political moves have her worried. “I guess I’m keeping my fingers crossed that the tremendous support that insite has is enough to be able to convince the Federal Government if they try to close down Insite they will have massive opposition on their hands.” Davies believes the Conservative Government isn’t even aware of how many lives have been saved by having nurses supervise injectable drug use on the Downtown East Side. Libby Davies says the proposed Respect for Communities Act introduced in October, along with the Conservative’s online petition coined “Keep heroin out of our backyards,” have her worried.“ The Conservatives have really politicized this issue. This is basically a health service to stop people from dying from overdoses, and help people get the treatment and the help they need. It’s that basic, it’s that straightforward,” says Davies.

  • Health Canada library changes leave scientists scrambling

    Health Canada scientists are so concerned about losing access to their research library that they're finding workarounds, with one squirrelling away journals and books in his basement for colleagues to consult, says a report obtained by CBC News.The draft report from a consultant hired by the department warned it not to close its library, but the report was rejected as flawed and the advice went unheeded...Davies said Health Minister Rona Ambrose should ask her department what the situation is like today at Health Canada. "I think the minister should dig deeper and follow this up and find out what's really gone on and review why this report was just shelved," Davies said.

  • Flaherty betrayed Ontario, broke promise on health transfers: health minister

    TORONTO - The federal Conservatives have betrayed Canada's most populous province by breaking their promise over health-care funding, Ontario Health Minister Deb Matthews charged Tuesday. The Harper Tories promised all provinces a six per cent increase in health transfers, but they're only giving Ontario 3.4 per cent in 2014-15, she said. That means Ontario is out $300 million, while Alberta is getting about $1 billion more — a 38 per cent increase, Matthews said...The federal New Democrats say Finance Minister Jim Flaherty is using the oldest trick in the book. "To download to the provinces and to take care of your own health at the expense of somebody else, and that's what they're doing," said NDP health critic Libby Davies. "But I don't think it works because what he's doing is betraying the trust of the premiers and it means his word doesn't count for anything."

  • Ottawa urged to improve dementia and Alzheimer’s strategy

    VANCOUVER (NEWS1130) – It’s a disease on the rise, and there are now calls nationally for more of a focus on dementia, coming only days after a North Vancouver senior’s death. The federal government is being urged to come up with a better plan. NDP MP Libby Davies says people are worried about what will happen to them as they get older. “It’s basically a time bomb waiting to go off in terms of how it’s going to impact the next generation, and we just don’t have a timeline, a strategy, a plan in Canada to deal with it.” Canada is attending a G8 Dementia Summit tomorrow, but Davies says our country is trailing others. “There are many other countries that have much better systems and resources to respond to Alzheimer’s and dementia. In Canada, we don’t have that yet,” she adds.