B.C. Premier Christy Clark Shuffles Cabinet
B.C. Premier Christy Clark made a minor cabinet shuffle Monday, demoting Harry Bloy to a junior role as Minister of State for Multiculturalism.
He is replaced as Minister of Social Development by Stephanie Cadieux.
CBC Legislative reporter Stephen Smart called it a "very strategic move by Clark," saying Bloy was going to be the NDP's number one target during the new session of the Legislature, which starts next week.
Bloy was the only MLA who backed Clark's bid for the Liberal leadership in February.
Clark refused to call Bloy's move a demotion, saying the MLA for Burnaby–Lougheed will now be able to focus on multiculturalism.
She called the move a good opportunity for Cadieux, who uses a wheelchair and has spent years working with the disabled.
Clark also appointed Margaret MacDiarmid the Minister of Labour, Citizen Services and Open Government, replacing Cadieux.
Clark also appointed four other members of the legislature to parliamentary secretary positions.
Gordon Hogg will oversee non-profit partnerships; Donna Barnett will take over rural communities; Richard Lee is parliamentary secretary for Asia-Pacific; and Ron Cantelon has taken on the job of helping seniors inside the Health Ministry.
New Democrat Leader Adrian Dix said Bloy's demotion is a stark admission from Clark of her poor judgement in putting Bloy in cabinet in the first place.
"Premier Clark has mismanaged the Ministry of Social Development," Dix said in a news release. "[Monday's] announcement highlights her utter failure to protect developmentally disabled adults and their families."
Both Bloy and the provincial government came under fire earlier this month from social advocacy groups who said services to group homes and to adults with disabilities were being cut.
Bloy announced last week that the budget to help those with developmental disabilities in the province was being raised by $8.9 million.