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"Being a parent in the community, with school-aged children, I know a lot of the problems people are focusing on, because I'm focusing on them too. Being a business owner, I'm focusing on the problems the business owners are having as well."
Born and raised in Fort St. John, Wilkinson believes it's her empathy that would make her successful as a city representative. She says she cares about her city, and has noticed people are not as happy with it as they used to be.
Hearing that, she wants to make some changes to increase their pride in Fort St. John. She's passionate about making the area more family-friendly, which includes ideas for putting in another pool, or reverting the gymnastics centre back to a pool, as well as arguing for seatbelts on School District 60 school buses.
"For some reason it's been overlooked that literally hundreds of kids in the area are riding without seatbelts every day, and if one of those buses rolls over, it would be tragic."
Wilkinson plans to start her campaign at the city level, and if unsuccessful, move to the school board and the provincial government.
The issue of whether school buses need seatbelts is widely contested internationally. Transport Canada says seats on school buses don't require seatbelts as they are packed tightly together and have high, padded backs so the seat in front cushions any impact. However, many parents and some doctors believe it is simply common sense to use a seatbelt, just like you would in a car.
Although she does not have any previous experience as an elected official, Wilkinson is a member of CM Finch Elementary School's PAC, and she has worked as high school support staff and as a soccer coach.
She argues there's a need for fresh views on council, and believes as a "middle-class mom" she's a good candidate to bring them.
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