In association with her recent book, Outside In: A Political Memoir, Libby Davies is crisscrossing the country and engaging in conversations about the intersection of activism and politics in pursuit of social change. And now, she’s coming to Nelson on Thursday, Aug. 29 at 6:30 p.m.
Davies has worked steadfastly for social justice both inside parliament and in the community for more than four decades. At 19, she became a community organizer in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside. At 23, Davies ran for municipal office. She served as a Vancouver city councillor from 1982 to 1993 and went on to become the Member of Parliament for Vancouver East (1997 to 2015) where she additionally served as the opposition house leader and later as deputy leader of the New Democratic Party of Canada.
Her long and storied career in politics was built on a principled foundation that community-based activism can be a powerful catalyst for change within the power structures that shape the laws and lives of Canadians. Davies has a legacy of advocating for sex workers’ rights, on behalf of those affected by homelessness, and for harm reduction and ending drug prohibition.
In Nelson, Davies will be joined by Cheryl Dowden, executive director of ANKORS, the HIV/AIDS Network, Outreach and Support Society. ANKORS is a harm reduction organization that offers HIV and Hepatitis C support, community education, a transgender care program, drug-checking; harm reduction supplies and services, and an overdose prevention site. There is an undeniable intersection between the community that ANKORS serves and the social policies shaped by political leaders. Together, it promises to be an illuminating conversation on the relationship between activism and politics.
Joining Davies and Dowden will also be MP Wayne Stetski (Kootenay-Columbia). The event will take place in one of Nelson’s most unique private residences, the pink church at 503 Fourth St., which formerly housed Nelson’s First Baptist Church. Admission is free; however, advanced registration is required by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.