NDP MLA Nicholas Simons hopes to raise level of drug policy debate
NDP MLANicholas Simons has told the Straight he’s looking forward to a serious "public policy" debate on Friday (May 4), when he takes part in a panel discussion put on by Pivot Legal Society.
"I’m just happy to be able to talk about public policy," the Powell River–Sunshine Coast representative said by phone. "Issues around marijuana obviously have been in the news recently, with former attorneys general speaking out—[along with] mayors and senators. I think it’s a question of public policy, and politicians are elected to contemplate public policy, so I’m happy to be able to talk about it."
Conservative senator Pierre Claude Nolin and Vancouver East NDP MP Libby Davies will join Simons on the panel, which takes place at 7 p.m. at Pivot’s office at 121 Heatley Avenue, in the Downtown Eastside. The event is titled Speaking Truth From Within Power: Politics, Passion, and the Future of Drug Policy in Canada. Admission is $15; the event is a fundraiser for Pivot.
"I think, ultimately, it will just lead to a more mature discussion of the subject, that has so far been snickered at or dismissed by the federal government, when it really should be thought of as an important public-policy issue," Simons added.
Peter Wrinch, executive director of Pivot, told the Straight by phone that Liberal senator Larry Campbell, who was scheduled to participate, will not be attending.