Prince George Free Press
He may be young, but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t have political experience.
Twenty-two-year-old Jon Van Barneveld has seven years of behind-the-scenes political experience and that will help him as he carries the NDP banner in Cariboo-Prince George.
“We need to start engaging people in the political process,” Van Barneveld said Monday.
The natural resource management student at UNBC has worked on Bulkley Valley-Stikine MP Nathan Cullen’s campaign in the past, has worked with the local riding association and has fought hard against the harmonized sales tax through the citizen’s initiative. When not working behind the political scenes, he has been a forestry worker. Van Barneveld also leveled his sights on incumbent MP, Conservative Dick Harris.
“The North has been let down by Dick Harris and the Conservatives,” he said, adding that the federal involvement in implementing the HST shows “Dick Harris is not in touch with the people of the province.”
Van Barneveld said main issues in the riding are improving the forestry, mining, and agricultural sectors.
“They promised the North $1 billion to help the forestry industry transition in these difficult times, yet they haven’t delivered most of it,” he said. “In a region that depends on the forestry industry for their livelihoods, this is unacceptable.”
Incumbent Harris is also being challenged by Green Party candidate Heidi Redl from Williams Lake and Sangreeta Lalli, parachuted in from Vancouver by the Liberals.