Anna Thomas will carry B.C. NDP election flag in Kamloops-South Thompson

The North Kamloops resident and member of the Lytton and Peguis First Nations said she would bring her passion for social justice and activism, if elected MLA.

Two days before the Elections BC deadline for nomination papers to be filed, the B.C. NDP announced a candidate will run in Kamloops South-Thompson.

A day later, on Thursday morning (Oct. 1), amongst a group of supporters downtown at Prince Charles Park, Anna Thomas was introduced as the candidate.

article continues below

The 45-year-old North Kamloops resident and member of the Lytton and Peguis First Nations said she would bring her passion for social justice and activism, if elected MLA. Thomas is president of the BC Native Women’s Association and issues about which she is passionate include advocating for Indigenous women and girls, ending violence against women, social housing and mental health.

“It has always been my focus to amplify the voices of those not heard and advocate for our families,” Thomas said during the press conference.

Shelly Johnson, Thompson Rivers University associate professor and Canada Research Chair in indigenizing higher education, described Thomas as a friend and colleague. She said Thomas has worked to mentor others through her work as president of the BC Native Women’s Association.

“Anna is somebody that is probably one of the most ethical, hard-working activists, advocates that I know,” Johnson said.

Thomas said she was asked to run three weeks ago and made her decision on Sept. 27. The NDP called a snap election about a week-and-a-half ago and named its Kamloops North-Thompson candidate, city councillor Sadie Hunter, on Sept. 28.

“I took the time I needed to talk to community members and the NDP party,” Thomas said.

Thomas joins a Kamloops South-Thompson race that includes BC Green candidate Dan Hines and BC Liberal candidate and incumbent MLA Todd Stone.

Thomas took a small jab at the Liberals during her speech to media and supporters on Thursday, noting she has seen “what happens when people are left behind by the B.C. Liberals.”

She touted the NDP government of the day for investing in social housing, eliminating MSP premiums and for listening to health experts during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Still, the Kamloops-area ridings are home to a B.C. Liberal stronghold.

Asked what she will do to defeat the competition, Thomas replied: “I am the person. I’m an advocate. I do the work that needs to [be done]. I’m not going to leave anybody behind. Everybody is important. Everybody’s voice needs to be heard and I am that person for the NDP South-Thompson.”

Visibly emotional at times during Thursday’s event, Thomas said she wears her heart on her sleeve, noting “what you see is what you get.”

“I’m not a political person that you can just fit in a square box and say, ‘Wear this and wear that,’” she said before laughing and alluding to her brightly coloured clothing. “You might kind of tell. I like flashy. I enjoy custom-made jewelry and helping community. I’ve been known in the community and across the country to help people.”

Thomas is married with two children and also has a background in banking and as a Kamloops Aboriginal Friendship Society board member.


© Kamloops This Week



Popular Kamloops This Week

Events Calendar

Help Us Help Kamloops. Support Local Media.

In response to the COVID-19 crisis, Kamloops This Week is now soliciting donations from readers. This program is designed to support our local journalism in a time where our advertisers are unable to due to their own economic constraints. Kamloops This Week has always been a free product and will continue to be free. This is a means for those who can afford to support local media to help ensure those who can’t afford to can get access to trusted local information. You can make a one-time or a monthly donation of any amount and cancel at any time .

NEW: For every donation of $25 or greater, we will offer a digital advertising package to the local non-profit group of your choice.

Click on for more information or to make your donation.

Thank you in advance for your support.