Vision Vancouver councillor Kerry Jang ponders run for provincial office

Vision Vancouver councillor Kerry Jang says he’s getting strong encouragement from “not just the NDP but also other parties” to seek a seat in the legislative assembly.

The UBC psychiatry professor indicated that he’s taking a couple of months to make up his mind about whether he wants to go this route or seek reelection in this year’s November municipal election.

“The question for me has always been ”˜How can I move forward the agenda of housing, homelessness, and mental health most effectively?’ ” Jang told the Straight in a phone interview. “There’s the provincial realm, where people say you can do it, but we’re also doing it well at the municipal level.”

Jang—the Vision caucus’s go-to person on the issues of housing, mental illness, and addictions—cited a number of things the current city administration has accomplished since the 2008 election.

These include securing provincial funding and getting construction under way at 14 supportive-housing sites. Jang also mentioned the opening of Dunsmuir House, a 166-unit, medium-term interim-housing facility. Another is the At Home joint project with the Mental Health Commission of Canada at the Bosman hotel, where 100 of Vancouver’s hardest-to-house people are receiving treatment and accommodation.

Jang also said the city has launched an urban health initiative that involves providing health services in homeless shelters.

“People say, ”˜You got to stick around because you got to finish it off, because you’ve just made headway,’ ” said Jang, a long-time member of the NDP. “But at the provincial level, people are telling me, ”˜While you’ve made great headway, one way of really making sure what you’ve done goes beyond the city is to go provincial.’ ”




Jan 20, 2011 at 7:27am

Cya, auf wiedesein, good bye

don't let the door hit you on the way out....

Second Nation

Jan 20, 2011 at 8:58am

Kerry is one of two councilors over the last ten years that actually answer emails. He's got my vote where-ever he goes.

Mike Klassen

Jan 21, 2011 at 12:10am

Kerry asks, "How can I move forward the agenda of housing, homelessness, and mental health most effectively?"

Funny, but wasn't Gregor Robertson an MLA who decided to move to Vancouver City Hall to do just exactly that?

Just saying...


Jan 21, 2011 at 6:59am

Who's asking him to go to Victoria? Adrian Dix - the guy he's supporting for leadership? Politics is such an ego-fest. Jang needs to get over himself - unless he was using his municipal office as the cliche stepping stone and nothing more.

Fan'o Truth

Jan 21, 2011 at 8:34am

BC politics could use a psychiatrist, perhaps several.

Sean Bickerton

Jan 21, 2011 at 11:10am

Mr Jang suffers from a loose familiarity with the facts. The 14 social housing developments he refers to were initiated, funded, zoned and planned by Sam Sullivan's NPA administration in a remarkable partnership with the province that is unprecedented in the city's history, creating more than 2400 units of social and supportive housing.

By contrast, Mr Jang has presided over the opening of two or three temporary shelters that close every spring and will end with his term in office. HIs record on housing is now a negative number, having eliminated half of the social housing at the Olympic Village.

Stick to the facts, Dr. Jang and you'll fare much better in your campaign.

Mad Max

Jan 21, 2011 at 11:59am

Perhaps Jang knows he won't be 'invited' back to Vancouver City Hall next term.

God help us if he gets in as an MLA.


Jan 21, 2011 at 3:15pm

The hubris is astounding.

glen p robbins

Jan 22, 2011 at 11:03am

Got a lot of newsplay - we called 10 random folks in Vancouver phone book - none recognized his name.

Fan'o Truth

Jan 26, 2011 at 8:13am

Vancouver-Mount Pleasant?