The lone candidate to identify as Indigenous in this year’s city council election, Stacie Smith is looking to bring an element of diversity that council has lacked for years.
A local business owner and lifelong Yellowknife resident, Smith is one of only three female candidates in this year’s race.
“It’s been years since we’ve had an Indigenous person on council so it would be nice to have that kind of background just to input on some of the social issues that occur on a daily basis downtown,” said Smith.
In the mayoral election, there’s one Indigenous candidate and one female candidate out of four people seeking office.
Smith’s upbringing would allow her to voice a unique perspective on council in regards to social issues that are affecting the downtown core, she said. She wants to show people in the city that there are opportunities if they make positive choices.
“I know being from the First Nation side the different struggles that occur of people, and they still occur today, and I can also see the other side because I grew up a little bit different. My mom (and my dad) ensured that my sister and I grew up in an environment where addictions wasn’t as strong,” said Smith.
Being a business owner downtown, running Flowers North, Smith said her top priority on council would be to revitalize the downtown core. She wants to promote small businesses and make people feel safe when they’re in the city core.
“My top priority is definitely downtown revitalization. I firmly believe that we need to promote our downtown. . . me being a business owner, I’ve never had an issue downtown but people find it scary to be down here and I want them to see it in a different light and I also want to help promote downtown small business,” said Smith.