How can we create a post-pandemic Vancouver that is just, equitable, decolonized, and inclusive for all?
From the traditional, unceded territories of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish), and Sel̓íl̓witulh (Tsleil-Waututh) nations, to the cultural identity of neighbourhoods such as Hogan’s Alley, Chinatown, Commercial Drive and the Punjabi Market, the City of Vancouver embodies a rich tapestry of neighbourhoods, communities, and residents.
Yet to achieve a safe and inclusive city for residents of all cultures, incomes, ages, abilities, genders, and perspectives, issues of equity and the history of systematic exclusion of many communities and identities need to be addressed. Tangible action that goes beyond engagement and consultation to take action on the feedback already heard from Indigenous Peoples, racialized communities, youth, and other equity-seeking groups is now needed.
The Vancouver City Planning Commission (VCPC), with the support of SFU Public Square, invites you to join a panel of current and past Commissioners who will discuss how the pandemic is impacting their communities, and what potential policy changes and opportunities they see in creating a post-pandemic Vancouver that is just, equitable, decolonized, and inclusive for all.
Sierra Tasi Baker is the lead cultural and design consultant at Sky Spirit Consulting. Sierra is a descendant of Squamish, Musqueam, Kwakwaka’wakw, Tlingit, Haida and Hungarian Chieftains and Matriarchs. Her Kwak’wala name is Gesuqwaluck and was given to her by her late Grandmother and Grand 4 Copper Chieftain, Tłaḵwagila̱’og̱wa in the Pot Lach system in Alert Bay and North Vancouver, BC, Canada.
Sierra completed her Bachelor’s of Environmental Design at the School of Architecture & Landscape Architecture (SALA) at the University of British Columbia. Graduating with an award in Design Leadership and receiving a Youth Leadership Award for her work in the community from the City of North Vancouver. Sierra then flew to London, England and graduated with her Masters of Science in Sustainable Urbanism at the Bartlett School of City Planning at University College London which is one of the top ten universities in the world for the built environment. Sierra was invited to meet the Queen of England in 2017 for her academic excellence at Canada House in London, England.
Sierra has worked extensively with museums, universities, municipalities, and businesses to further reconciliation and develop meaningful consultation through design. Her research and body of work has focused on developing indigenous design methodologies, respectful indigenous consultation, sustainable community planning, and urban policy.
Veronika Bylicki is an engagement innovator, community builder and sustainability strategist. She is the Co-Founder and Co-Director of CityHive, a social enterprise on a mission to transform the way that young people are engaged in civic processes, in particular planning and decision making. A lifelong Vancouverite, she is passionate about creating more sustainable, liveable cities and amplifying the meaningful engagement of citizens, particularly youth, in addressing urban challenges.
Veronika completed her BSc in Global Resource Systems at UBC, with a specialization in Urban Sustainability, Policy and Planning. Her experience includes working in Sustainability Education Facilitation with Metro Vancouver, Student Sustainability Engagement at UBC, and in Environmental Assessment with Environment and Climate Change Canada, and as a Director at Co-Design Engage, which leads participatory design processes in city planning. She was awarded as a Top 25 Under 25 Env ironmentalist in Canada in 2015, has delivered a TEDxYouth talk on Urban Sustainability and was a RADIUS Fellow.
Leslie Shieh has worked as a consultant in community economic development, working alongside communities and local organizations in Canada, United States, China, and Taiwan. Her work in Vancouver combines her extensive experience working in different urban contexts and her interest in furthering social and environmental goals through real estate.
Leslie holds a BS in Urban Studies from Cornell University and anMCP (Planning) from the University of California, Berkeley. She completed a PhD in Urban Planning from University of British Columbia where her research examined community building and governance under the context of China’s rapid urbanization.
Amina Yasin works as an urban planner with a focus on accessibility and equity in planning. She is Co-Chair of the Canadian Institute of Planners Social Equity Committee and volunteers with the Hogan’s Alley Society.Her work and research have actively embraced her unique professional and lived-experiences to advocate for an increased emphasis on responsive community planning that focuses on the intersections between urban and active transportation planning, racial inequities, accessibility, mental and neurocognitive health, and social cohesion inspired by her passion for responsive, just and equitable cities.
Amina has given several keynote and panel presentations on responsive and inclusive community planning, public health and wellness including at Congress 2019 – a conference on the humanities and social sciences, the B.C. Active Transportation Summit, the National Association of City Transportation Officials (NACTO) Designing Cities 2019-Toronto conference, and ModeShift: Human-Scale Cities conference among others.
Omar Dominguez currently serves as co-chair of the Vancouver City Planning Commission (VCPC). Omar is the director of government relations and sector development at Vantage Point. In this role, Omar nurtures constructive public dialogue and collaboration to advance a healthy public policy environment to strengthen the not-for-profit sector.
Omar is the co-founder of Happy City, an internationally-acclaimed urban planning and design consultancy that helps build healthier and happier cities, neighbourhoods, and buildings. He has a diverse background leading the development of consulting services, urban planning, sustainable finance, interdisciplinary research, community development programs for vulnerable populations, and public engagement initiatives across multiple economic sectors and regions.
His work is focused on ensuring city-building maximizes public benefits and mitigate risks to society, investors and the environment. Omar completed a degree in International Business from the Technological Institute of Monterrey in Mexico City and an MA in Community Development and Social Planning from the University of British Columbia.