BC Building Trades leader announces run for office as NDP candidate for Langley

Journal of Commerce | Russell Hixson |September 22, 2020

Andrew Mercier, executive director for the BC Building Trades, has announced he will be the BC NDP candidate for Langley in this fall’s provincial election.

“I’ve always been involved in Langley, involved in the community,” said Mercier. “It’s the community I grew up in and it has changed significantly in the last 10 years. I don’t feel we are being represented as a community anymore. The B.C. Liberals don’t represent us anymore.”

B.C. residents will go to the polls on Oct. 24. The Langley seat is currently occupied by Liberal MLA Mary Polak.

Mercier explained his work with the BC Building Trades has allowed him to see how Premier John Horgan has helped keep jobsites open and working people safe. Mercier explained Langley is young, diverse and experiencing unprecedented growth.

“Langley has experienced a significant construction boom in the past few years,” he said. “The city is becoming more dense with townhouses, condos and purpose-built rentals. There is a significant demand on various aspects of our infrastructure as a consequence of that boom.”

And as young families are drawn to the city, child care is become a major issue.

“It’s necessary,” he said. “If you want skilled tradeswomen going to work and equal participation, we need to solve child care issues. I grew up in this community and when my wife and I decided to have a family and moved back we faced the same types of pressures everyone else does.” 

Mercier noted the NDP has already committed over $30 million to upgrade Langley Memorial Hospital — in addition to building a new hospital in Cloverdale, just minutes down the street from Langley. The NDP has also invested over $25 million in child care in Langley.

It is not Mercier’s first time running for office. He ran for city council in 2018 and for MLA of the Langley riding in 2013.

Mercier, a graduate of Dalhousie University’s Schulich School of Law, joined the Teamsters Local 213 as legal counsel in 2017 where he was responsible for grievance arbitration, judicial reviews and labour relations. He became executive director of the BC Building Trades in 2019 after former executive director Tom Sigurdson retired.

Mercier said he has the support of the BC Building Trades executive board as he goes on leave to run for office.

“The Building Trades has a top notch, professional staff and great leadership,” said Mercier. “I watched everyone come together and learn how to do business differently during the pandemic and advocate for keeping the industry open and work being done safely.”