A petition is doing the rounds of the Filipino community in B.C. and its key message is clear.
Filipinos want Mable Elmore to be appointed in the Cabinet of the incoming B.C. NDP government.
The B.C. NDP won a decisive victory in the October 23, 2020 election.
The community petition is addressed to B.C. NDP Premier John Horgan.
Horgan has announced that the B.C. legislative assembly will return on December 7 with a throne speech.
The new Cabinet will be sworn in on November 26.
Members of the legislative assembly or MLAs like Elmore will take their oath on November 24.
The letter to Horgan stated that the Filipino community is pleased to see Elmore elected to her fourth term as MLA Vancouver-Kensington.
“Ms. Elmore remains the first and only MLA of Filipino heritage elected to the legislature and since 2009, she has worked tirelessly o bring forward the interests of both her constituents in VKE and those of her community across the province. But more needed is to be done.
“Our community needs Ms. Elmore to have a seat at Cabinet. In this way, Cabinet can better reflect the many diverse voices of BC’s ethnic groups – the largest of which are the Chinese, South Asian and Filipino Groups. By appointing Ms. Elmore, your cabinet will benefit from her direct connections to the community that feels ignored by successive BC governments,” according to the letter.
The letter also made two other requests.
One is about Filipino language in public schools.
“Filipinos are the third largest ethnic group in BC, yet we still lack many institutional supports that can help our community thrive. As such, along with Ms. Elmore as a Minister, our community also calls for the implementation of Filipino language classes in public schools,” the letter states.
The other one is about the establishment of a Filipino community centre.
“A Filipino community Center is a decade – long dream of our community. And in the same way the Chinese, Jewish, Japanese or South Asian Centers work to preserve and highlight their cultures – a Filipino Community Center will allow generations of Filipinos in BC to learn about both our culture and history as one of BC’s fast growing immigrant groups,” the letter stated.
Elmore was first elected MLA for Vancouver-Kensington in 2009, when she made history by becoming the first MLA of Filipino heritage.
Elmore was re-elected in May 2013 and May 2017.
Before the October 23, 2020 provincial election, Elmore served as the Parliamentary Secretary for Poverty Reduction.
Elmore previously served as the Official Opposition spokesperson for ICBC, and the deputy spokesperson for finance.
The incoming B.C. NDP administration will rule as a majority government.
In the last election, the B.C. NDP won 57 seats in the provincial parliament, whiel B.C. Liberals got 28, and Greens, two.