‘Diverseabilities’ the focus at Surrey-White Rock all-candidates forum

‘Diverseabilities’ the focus at Surrey-White Rock all-candidates forum

Self-Advocates of Semiahmoo will host an all-candidates forum April 24

Self-Advocates of Semiahmoo (SAS) is getting involved in the provincial election by hosting an all-candidates forum for Surrey-White Rock candidates April 24.

“I just think it’s about time for us to be known as voters. We are valuable votes,” said Alexander Magnussen, chairman and mentor of SAS, which is an independent organization made of adults who have ‘diverseabilities.’

Candidates will give a presentation, which will be followed by a statement from SAS on what issues the organization finds important.

“Definitely accessibility for all people, equal job opportunities, equal living opportunities, the poverty line, things like that,” Magnussen said. “And the reason why we have our statements instead of questions is because we really want people to not feel pressured to answer right away, but to just listen and take away from that going ‘Oh, I didn’t even think of that.’”

He described it as an educational opportunity for the candidates.

Candidates Niovi Patsicakis (BC NDP) and Tracy Redies (BC Liberal) have confirmed their participation. Event organizer Jill Glennie said she’s reached out to BC Green candidate Bill Marshall and has not heard back, and is yet to make contact with independent Tom Bryant.

“We hope to have everyone,” Glennie said.

There will be an opportunity for guests to interact with the candidates after the presentation.

The event will take place at Semiahmoo House (15306 24 Ave.). Guests are asked to come between 2:15 and 2:30 p.m. to ensure access to HandyDart and other vehicles for exiting people.