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Green candidate in the running for Kelowna-Lake Country-Coldstream

Stephanie Hendy seeks seat in 2024 B.C. election

A North Okanagan woman has stepped up to run for the new Kelowna-Lake Country-Coldstream MLA position for the B.C. Green Party

Stephanie Hendy is looking to make a difference and give the region more attention from the government.

“Healthcare has become divisive, unequal and unreliable in this province. People with disabilities and chronic illnesses in more rural areas are often left to fend for themselves without the support they need,” said Hendy, who has been involved in B.C. politics since 2015 when she began advocating to remove the age restriction from government-funded insulin pumps. Her campaign was successful in 2018, providing a vital resource to people with diabetes across the province.

“A large part of this is because politics is often focused on urban areas. Our legislature is in Victoria, and the province’s biggest cities get prime consideration in a lot of policy decisions. When I moved from Vancouver to the Okanagan in 2021, the gap in services became abundantly clear to me. It leaves a lot of communities without vital services to ensure their wellbeing is looked after. Regional transit is lacking, healthcare services are limited and organized recreational activities are sparse.”

Hendy has spent the last 14 years of her career working in providing exercise prescriptions and lifestyle coaching for people with various chronic health conditions as well as the general population. She has spent the most recent three years working in disability management.

She currently sits on the Vernon Climate Action Advisory Committee, an advisory body to the City of Vernon mayor and council to ensure the city follows best practice in choosing actions present and future with climate considerations. She also currently volunteers with projects initiating from Vernon’s Climate Action Now! group and the Okanagan Transit Alliance.

B.C. Green Party leader Sonia Furstenau says the legislature needs more people with Hendy’s drive.

“Stephanie is a fierce advocate for community resources and services, with a keen awareness of how urban areas are often prioritized over rural areas. I am inspired by her determination to work to close this gap, and to ensure access to healthcare, recreation, and community support is the best it can be for her community.”

Hendy says Green leadership is needed now more than ever.

“The current government is disappointing British Columbians over and over again, from failing to implement the Old Growth Strategic Review recommendations, to continuing to ignore DRIPA to pursue Site C. We need leadership that is focused on action, rather than talking, and collaboration, rather than fighting. The Okanagan needs a bold climate leader to better safeguard our citizens against forest fires, drought and food insecurity with aggressive legislative reform. Our region and our planet are running out of time.”

The next provincial election is scheduled for Oct. 19, 2024.

Hendy ran unsuccessfully for council in Vernon in 2022 and in the 2021 byelection.

READ MORE: Kinesiologist running for Vernon city council

READ MORE: Amanda Shatzko in running for new Kelowna-Lake Country-Coldstream MLA


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Jennifer Smith

About the Author: Jennifer Smith

Vernon has always been my home, and I've been working at The Morning Star since 2004.
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