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Davies, Elizabeth (Libby)

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Davies, Elizabeth (Libby)

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  • Davies, Libby

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Libby Davies was born Elizabeth Davies in Aldershot, England in 1953. Her father was a British Army Major and the family travelled extensively until arriving in Canada in 1968. Libby was married to Bruce Eriksen which whom she had a son, Lief. She met Eriksen through her father, a social planner, who had introduced Eriksen to advocacy work in the downtown eastside. In 1973 Libby joined DERA (Downtown Eastside Residents' Association), founded by Eriksen, as a community worker and did so for nine years. In her advocacy work she produced a community newsletter and established a cooperative food store. During that time Libby attended the University of British Columbia and withdrew prior to completing her studies. In 1976 and 1978 she ran unsuccessfully for Vancouver City Council. In 1980 she was elected and served two years on the Vancouver Parks Board. Libby was first elected to city council in 1982 and served five consecutive terms till 1993. She was a member of a civic political organization known as COPE (Committee of Progressive Electors). As an Alderman she was involved in issues such as affordable housing, an improved transit system, hot lunches for schoolchildren and a nuclear-free Port of Vancouver. She spoke out on poverty, peace and women's issues. In 1994 to 1997 she worked with the Hospital Employees' Union (HEU) serving as Ombudsperson for Human Rights, Complaints Investigator and Coordinator of Human Resources. In 1997 she was elected as Member of Parliament for Vancouver East and re-elected in 2000. She is presently (2002) the federal NDP spokesperson for Housing, Children & Youth, Post-Secondary Education, Multiculturism, Urban Affairs, and Social Policy. For her work in social justice and equality issues she has been acknowledged with awards from the Vancouver and District Labour Council and the YMCA.

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