The Vancouver Green Party has announced it's riding alone into the civic election this November.
At a special general meeting held last night (June 19), members voted unanimously against participating in any coalition or electoral alliance with another civic party or parties.
In a telephone interview, Green city councillor Adriane Carr told the Straight that also means the party will also not be endorsing other candidates ahead of the election.
“The Green Party is not a party of the left or the right,” she explained. “We want to feel free to vote our conscience and in line with people and their concerns on issues as they arise, and vote for and support ideas from whichever councilor they come from.”
Carr however added that individual Green members were free to endorse specific candidates and policies from other parties.
The vote against official cooperation with another party torpedoes a proposal floated by the Coalition of Progressive Electors (COPE) earlier in the week. On June 18, the Straight reported that COPE external chair Tim Louis had proposed running a joint slate for city council, where his party and the Greens would nominate complementary numbers of candidates.
At the June 19 meeting, Green party members also agreed on how many candidates they plan to field for park board and school board. That’s up to three for the former and two for the latter, plus one candidate to represent Electoral Area A, which includes UBC and Barnston Island.
The Greens had previously announced they would run as many as four candidates for city council. In addition to Carr, Strathcona Residents Association chair Pete Fry and retired lawyer and social justice advocate Cleta Brown will try for seats at city hall.
Carr told the Straight that the Greens are not actively pursuing a fourth contender for city council at this time, but would support an additional nomination “if somebody absolutely stellar comes forward”.
Asked who she would like to see run with the Greens for park board or school board, Carr said she so far only had one name in mind: Stuart MacKinnon.
Reached by phone, the former Green parks board commissioner (2008-11) told the Straight he wasn’t thinking about the civic election. The high school teacher explained that the ongoing labour dispute with the province is his priority right now.
However, MacKinnon said that if the teachers’ strike is resolved before November, political office “would be something I would consider”.
While declining to say which party he might run with (MacKinnon also has a long relationship with COPE), he noted the only civic party of which he is currently a member is the Greens.