Leader of the Conservative Party of Canada, Pierre Poilievre, made a stop in Squamish this week.
Poilievre, the federal leader of the opposition, posted on X, "Sat down to listen to Squamish Nation Elders earlier today," on Thursday, Feb. 8.
"Common sense Conservatives will end the Ottawa-knows-best big government approach and put First Nations back in control of their money and lives.”
Opposition shadow critic for natural resources, MP Shannon Stubbs, also posted to X about being on the visit.
"I was honoured to meet with Elders, hereditary chiefs, entrepreneurs and partners of the Squamish Nation yesterday, alongside our leader [Pierre Poilievre] about all the ground breaking work and businesses in their community, which benefit all of Canada," she wrote in her post on Feb. 9.
In the photos with the X posts were local Sḵwx̱wú7mesh Úxwumixw (Squamish Nation) members and Elders, including former Nation councillor Deanna Lewis, also known as Kálkalilh, who ran to be mayor of Squamish in 2022.
Woodfibre LNG president Christine Kennedy was also present.
A spokesperson for Woodfibre LNG, Sean Beardow, told The Squamish Chief in an emailed statement that the politicians visited the Woodfibre LNG site to learn more about the project and, among other things, the “consent-based process that resulted in Squamish Nation being a regulator on the project.”
The same message was posted to Woodfibre LNG's social media.
While on-site, the elected officials spoke with construction workers, other Woodfibre LNG team members, and members of the company’s Gender Safety Advisory Committee, including Lewis, Beardow said.
Lewis has led gender safety training for over 500 workers, suppliers and Woodfibre LNG staff.
"Woodfibre LNG welcomes all political leaders to visit and view the progress being made on site as we continue to advance a low-carbon future and economic reconciliation with Indigenous people,” Beardow said.
He added that in addition to the visit of Poilievre and Stubbs, Woodfibre LNG has hosted elected leaders from the District of Squamish, members of the Legislative Assembly and other members of Parliament on the site.
Poilievre was also in Vancouver Thursday where he announced a proposed new plan that would allow First Nations to collect taxes from industry.
This would speed up negotiations and project approvals, he said.
However, The Canadian Press reported that the chair of the First Nations Bank of Canada, Bill Namagoose, was critical of the plan because it would let the federal government's constitutional and fiduciary obligations to First Nations communities off the hook.
The Squamish Chief reached out to Poilievre's team for comment on the visit, but did not hear back. We also reached out to Lewis, but did not receive a reply prior to publication.