Statement on NB Municipal Election Results: NBMC Celebrates Greater Diversity Across Municipalities
The New Brunswick Multicultural Council (NBMC) extends its congratulations to all newly- and re-elected municipal councilors and mayors across the province, and to all the candidates who demonstrated courage, determination and passion for their communities.
We are especially delighted to see new, historic election results across the province, including the election of the following:
- The first Black mayor in the history of New Brunswick: Following years for commitment to welcoming and integrating newcomers to New Brunswick, as well as acting as Board Secretary at NBMC, Kassim Doumbia has been elected as mayor of Shippagan.
- Women as mayors in four of the province’s cities: Dawn Arnold in Moncton, Kate Rogers in Fredericton, Donna Reardon in Saint John, and Kim Chamberlain in Bathurst.
- A greater proportion of women in council: 35% compared to 30% in the 2016 results, including the village of Grand-Anse where a council entirely of women was elected.
- NB’s first Muslim woman: Paula Radwan-Donovan was appointed to the Saint John municipal council.
- First Nations councilwoman: Paige Hambrook-Storey was elected to the Doaktown municipal council.
“These are historic firsts for New Brunswick. We are delighted to see increased diversity in those elected and in all individuals who ran courageous and engaging campaigns,” notes Moncef Lakouas, President of NBMC. “It is time for City Councils and legislative assemblies to have inclusive representation of all people living in NB. I personally extend my most sincere congratulations to our colleagues Kassim Doumbia, NBMC Board Secretary, and Kim Chamberlain, Executive Director of the Multicultural Association of the Chaleur Region, for their successful elections.”
Municipalities are faced with increasingly complex files and demands on their services. In recent years we have seen housing, environmental sustainability, population growth, public safety and public transit at the forefront of municipal politics, along with local governance reforms. NBMC is set to release its response to the Green Paper on Local Governance Reform in the coming days. Among its recommendations, NBMC is calling on municipal governments to establish champions within their councils for newcomer welcoming and integration and to establish regional newcomer integration coordination committees along with their local newcomer settlement agency.
NBMC and its member network of settlement agencies are also working with many municipal governments in developing community growth plans and hosting public dialogues on immigration in communities across the province. We are committed to continuing this work with the newly elected councils.
“Changing demographics and the growing demands on municipal governments are showing us yet again how critical collaboration and community growth plans are for the vitality of New Brunswick’s collectivities. Our New Conversations tour and the impacts of the pandemic over the past year have also shown us how complex and challenging this work can be,” said Ginette Gautreau, Interim Executive Director at NBMC. “Municipalities have key roles to play in welcoming and integrating newcomers in their communities, and we are thrilled to see more municipal leaders engage in local growth plans and work in close collaboration with community partners, such as their local newcomer settlement agencies. We’re calling on all elected officials to continue and to enhance this vital work in the years ahead.”