Prominent homeless advocate to seek Vancouver City Council seat

Judy Graves retired as the City of Vancouver's homeless advocate after more than three decades of work.
Judy Graves retired as the City of Vancouver's homeless advocate after more than three decades of work. Global News

Prominent Vancouver homeless advocate Judy Graves is throwing her hat in the ring for the upcoming Vancouver City Council byelection.

Graves announced Wednesday she will seek the nomination for the fledgling OneCity party.

“I think my chances are 100 per cent,” Graves said, adding that’s both for winning the nomination and the spot on council.

“I do not play to lose.”

READ MORE: Vancouver Councillor Geoff Meggs to be John Horgan’s chief of staff

In the more than three decades Graves has spent working with the city’s homeless, she has become a respected voice as well as a trusted face to the city’s street population.

She served as the city’s official homeless advocate from 2010-2013, and before that worked as the outreach coordinator for the city’s housing department.

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WATCH: 2017 Metro Vancouver homeless count

Click to play video: '2017 Metro Vancouver homeless count' 2017 Metro Vancouver homeless count
2017 Metro Vancouver homeless count – Apr 10, 2017

Graves participated in Vancouver’s first-ever homeless count in 2002, designed the city’s Homeless Outreach Project in 2005, and sat on the city’s Homeless Emergency Action Team which was formed in 2008.

She was awarded the City of Vancouver’s highest honour, the Freedom of the City award in 2014 for her years of work.

READ MORE: Vancouver lawyer, advocate for the homeless invite Pope Francis to visit the DTES

She has also been awarded an Honourary Doctorate in Law from the University of British Columbia and an Honorary Doctorate of Divinity from the Vancouver School of Theology.

The OneCity party is a relatively new entrant to Vancouver civic politics. It ran just one candidate in 2014 who failed to break through.

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The byelection, which will be held in October, is to fill former Vision Vancouver Councillor Geoff Meggs’ council seat.

Meggs resigned last week to take a job as Chief of Staff to Premier-designate John Horgan.

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