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Election 2020: Terry Tiessen

The third of four interviews with the Nelson-Creston candidates
Terry Tiessen is the B.C. Libertarian Party candidate for Nelson-Creston. Photo: Submitted

Ahead of the Oct. 24 provincial election, the Nelson Star conducted phone interviews with each of the Nelson-Creston election candidates. Each interview included the same questions, which we did not communicate to them in advance.

We then gave each candidate a bonus question of their choice.

The candidates’ responses are edited for brevity.

This interview is with B.C. Libertarian candidate Terry Tiessen.

What do you think the province should do about the following issues, locally and provincially?

The opioid crisis

We would point out that we think the lockdown measures that were taken were extreme, and that any further restrictions and lockdowns are going to actually impact us on that opioid crisis level.

We’re yet to see the fallout of the mental illnesses, the depression and the opioid crisis, the opioid deaths spiked during this pandemic lockdown procedure. And so if there was a problem before we even have a bigger problem now.

For the systemic problem, our solution is bent to destigmatize it. We are against victimless crime being processed through our court systems, but to be treated humanely as an illness, and not as a crime. And that needs to be the start of how to approach opioid users.

Wildfire mitigation

We better be out there, we better be doing some controlled burns, taking what selective logging, what deadwood, we can responsibly.

Proper forest management should be forefront of a B.C. mentality. And especially around here when we saw the dying of the mills and the lumber industry basically collapsing underneath us, a lot through environmental pressure and just a shift in the market where our lumber started going elsewhere, but definitely we can do better. And it should be part of a comprehensive plan for our forest that can benefit everybody while saving us from burning to the ground.

Greenhouse gas emissions

On a very local level, as libertarians, we believe governance should be local, and that actions should be local. So just that whole idea of shopping local does cut down [on GHG]. The less we have to ship into an area, the less transport, the less gas, the less fuel we’ve used. So I love the whole farmers and craft market ideal.

We really do need to nurture small businesses within communities that keep the communities alive. Because if you do support local resource, you do have to export-import less. You’re self sustainability always is more energy efficient than having to import anything.

On an ideological level, we believe that the change needs to come from a consumer level, we need to change things from the way we shop and that a free market self regulates. Somebody who is a polluter, or someone who does not follow carbon neutral guidelines, gets shut down by public opinion, or by the opinion of the public finances.


I’ve seen what it’s taken to get some of these low-income housing places built and it’s a nightmare, people are pulling their hairs out. And that happens more on a municipal and provincial level. These strings have to be lifted and allow a lot more of these places to be built a lot easier.

So much of our land is eaten up by Crown land rules and regulations that if more of this was turned over to private ownership, not only would we be having better land stewardship, people taking care of the land better, but this is another way we would alleviate the land crisis.

Tiessen’s bonus issue: Health care

As soon as you mention private health care, people picture their health care being taken away. Libertarians are not after anybody’s health care.

What we’re really saying is that we would like to add on to the policy, we would like to give a multi-policy option to more people.

We believe just adding more private healthcare options would cut down on wait times, keep the prices low, and take the weight off of B.C. healthcare. But we’re not coming after anybody’s health care. We want to add to it actually, make it better, make it cheaper, but higher quality.


Election 2020: Nicole Charlwood

Election 2020: Tanya Finley

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Tyler Harper

About the Author: Tyler Harper

I’m editor-reporter at the Nelson Star, where I’ve worked since 2015.
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