Laura McDiarmid to run for B.C. Liberals in Vancouver-West End in May election

Two champions of LGBT rights will duke it out in the new electoral district of Vancouver-West End in this year’s May 12 provincial election.

Incumbent Vancouver-Burrard MLA Spencer Herbert has been named as the NDP’s candidate in the riding, and he’ll face a challenge from Laura McDiarmid of the B.C. Liberals.

“The West End has always been my preferred area because I have so much connection to it,” McDiarmid told the Straight today (March 18).

McDiarmid—who, like Herbert, is a former Vancouver park board commissioner—ran as the B.C. Liberal candidate for Vancouver-Hastings in 2005 but she lost to the NDP’s Shane Simpson.

In a phone interview, McDiarmid said that the details of her candidacy are being finalized and an announcement is expected sometime next week.

Until Monday evening (March 16), when she resigned, McDiarmid was the vice president of the Vancouver Pride Society.

“As time goes on, the membership will understand better what’s happening at the Pride Society,” she said, when asked about her reasons for leaving the group.

McDiarmid chaired the Vancouver park board as a member of the Non-Partisan Association. She ran for a seat on the board in last year’s municipal election but was not successful.

For his part, Spencer won last October’s by-election in Vancouver-Burrard. He is currently the Opposition critic for arts and culture.