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Doug Routley

BC NDP

Nanaimo-North Cowichan

Parliamentary Secretary for Forests

Office:

Parliament Buildings
Victoria, BC V8V 1X4

Phone: (250) 387-3655

Fax: (250) 356-4680

Constituency:

PO Box 269
#1-16 High Street
Ladysmith, BC V9G 1A2

[email protected]

Phone: (250) 245-9375

Fax: (250) 245-8164

Biography

Doug Routley was re-elected as the MLA for Nanaimo-North Cowichan in 2020. He served as MLA for Cowichan-Ladysmith from 2005 until the riding boundaries were re-drawn, and was re-elected in 2009, 2013 and 2017. He is the Parliamentary Secretary for Forests.

Doug served as the Official Opposition critic for Citizens’ Services and deputy critic for Forests and Forest Futures. He previously served as Opposition critic for Skills Training.

Doug was born May 9, 1961, in New Westminster, B.C., and grew up in Duncan, B.C.

He comes from a family of educators and attended the public schools of the Cowichan Valley, then Camosun College, before travelling to Japan, where he lived and worked for one year.

Doug’s close friendships and connections to the Cowichan First Nation people began as a boy playing road hockey and attending school with his friends from Cowichan. He has continued building on that connection in politics, first as a school trustee and now as MLA.

Doug’s work experience is diverse and gives him a very broad understanding of so many of his constituents’ lives and challenges. Doug has experience in construction and in logging, having worked as a sawmill worker and treeplanter. He also has been a business owner and operator, school custodian and school trustee.

While in Japan, Doug taught English and studied Sumi-e, traditional Japanese ink painting. He was a bicycle racer and while training in Japan, met a bicycle manufacturer. After his return to Canada, Doug established a bicycle retail and wholesale company which had dealers throughout Canada and the U.S. Doug is still an avid cyclist, riding average of 1000 km per month. Doug is a member of the BC Masters Cycling Association and races occasionally. In 2012, he also participated in the 140km Ryder Hesjedal Tour de Victoria and the 120km Vancouver-Whistler Gran Fondo. Doug also enjoys track riding. Doug and his partner Leanne can often be seen training on the roads of mid-Vancouver Island.

Doug’s diverse background in industry, business, labour and politics gives him the understanding that working together cooperatively is the key to success.

Doug lives in Duncan with his partner, Leanne Finlayson. He has a daughter, Madeline, and a step-daughter, Brooklynne. The family enjoy cycling, hiking (with Husky dog Kato), camping and boating together.

Where They Stand on Modernizing BC's Wrongful Death Laws

MLA Routley is a confirmed supporter of modernizing BC’s wrongful death laws.

After meeting with constituent Sharon Andersen (partner of Shirley Lamb) and The BC Wrongful Death Law Reform Society President, Michael-James Pennie in early 2021, MLA Routley wrote a letter to David Eby endorsing modernization of BC’s wrongful death laws.

This MLA has received a top grade, due to the following criteria:

He has met with constituents on this issue.

He has met with The BC Wrongful Death Law Reform Society on this issue.

He has written a letter of endorsement for modernization to the Attorney General and Premier.

Please petition MLA Doug Routley now »

This individual has scored an A grade with respect to their position on modernizing BC's wrongful death laws. Learn More »

The BC Wrongful Death Law Reform Society’s goal is to modernize BC’s wrongful death laws, which unlike other provinces, currently denies justice to the surviving family members of children, seniors, the disabled, or anyone who wasn’t considered a breadwinner with dependents, when killed by the careless or intentional acts of another.

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As Seen In

The following news outlets have featured the issue of BC's antiquated wrongful death laws alongside stories of tragedy countless times for decades, although the provincial government still fails to right this legislative wrong.

What British Columbians Are Saying

The public is unanimously outraged and expressing their views through many channels.

Organizations That Have Endorsed Modernization

The following organizations have endorsed repealing and replacing the 'Family Compensation Act' and replacing it with our Society's drafted 'Wrongful Death Accountability Act' to ensure the full measure of value to British Columbians lives and access to justice with no loopholes for wrongdoers to escape accountability.

Vancouver City Council
Union of BC Municipalities
Lower Mainland Local Government Association

Prominent Figures Who've Endorsed Modernization

The following prominent figures and elected officials have written letters endorsing legislative modernization of BC's wrongful death laws.

Vancouver City Councillor Pete Fry (Green)
MLA Michael DeJong (BC United)
MLA Douglas Routley (NDP)
MLA Andrew Mercier (NDP)

Petition Your MLA Now

Unlike other Canadian provinces, BC has not made any significant amendments to its wrongful death legislation—ever. The current BC Family Compensation Act only values the lives of income-earners. This neglect must stop. Petitioning your local MLA, the Attorney General, and Premier with our automated tool can make a lasting difference to the lives of British Columbians for generations to come.

Dear Local MLA, Attorney General Niki Sharma, Premier David Eby, Minister of Health Adrian Dix, Minister of Public Safety & Solicitor General Mike Farnworth,

I am writing to you about British Columbia’s woefully outdated wrongful death laws; which are still based on colonial-era legislation from 1846.

BC’s current “Family Compensation Act” only takes into account the direct financial losses resulting from the wrongful death of a loved one. As a result, only the families of deceased breadwinners see the inside of a courtroom in cases of wrongful death.

Children, seniors, people with disabilities, or anyone who does not meet the discriminatory criteria of having both an income and dependents are classes of people whose lives are not valued or respected when they are killed in BC.

This is a human rights issue.

Investigations into the wrongful death of these classes of citizens most often do not occur because there is no ‘loss of earnings’ to cover civil trial costs.

Accordingly, families have been denied the ability to right the wrong and ensure that the same preventable actions which resulted in the wrongful death would not happen to another.

Unlike other provinces in Canada, which in most cases have modernized long ago, many of your constituents are considered “worthless” under the discriminatory law in British Columbia.

Their stories are actively being documented and published here – https://intheirname.ca/stories/

The BC Wrongful Death Law Reform Society is comprised of families who have been fighting for over two decades to see our laws modernized. They have drafted legislation that can solve this problem now.

These families, based on each individual personal experience of loss, have demanded that the legislation include the following tenets:

#1 The value of human life must not be based merely on whether the wrongfully killed was a breadwinner with dependants. There must be a legal recognition for the value of each life and the loss of love, guidance, care, companionship, and affection wrongfully taken from surviving family members.

#2 The value of human life must not be arbitrarily capped by legislation. Damages for the loss of life must be assessed individually by constitutionally independent superior courts, in recognition of the distinct relationship that existed between each of the surviving family members and the wrongfully killed loved one.

#3 All forms of non-pecuniary damages, including aggravated and punitive damages must be available under the legislation to be awarded in appropriate cases. Financial penalty assessed by a civil court when a wrongdoer maliciously, or recklessly kills another person is essential when criminal prosecution is not pursued or fails. General deterrence of future wrongdoing is an important objective.

#4 If an individual is not initially killed by a wrongful act, but later dies before the conclusion of litigation, this should not be a windfall for the wrongdoer. There should not be a perverse incentive for the wrongdoer to delay, or prolong litigation. Damages relating to conscious pain, suffering, and disability during the period between the wrong and the decedent’s death, including damages for loss of expectation of life, pain and suffering, physical disfigurement, or loss of amenities must remain available under the legislation.

#5 Families deserve the right to have their day in court with the ability to obtain professional legal representation on a contingency basis. No other piece of legislation in the province should bar the pursuit of an at-fault wrongful death claim against a negligent party. The contingency fee system does not discriminate socioeconomically, and it ensures the family can obtain the best representation necessary to obtain truth, justice, and accountability against a wrongdoer, no matter how big and powerful that wrongdoer might be. Families also deserve the right to have the case decided by a jury of their peers. This fundamental aspect of our democracy must be preserved.

What will you do to create a fair and adequate wrongful death law in BC?

Yours Truly,
Your Full Name
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cc: BC United Leader Kevin Falcon, BC United Critic for Attorney General Mike de Jong, BC United Critic for Public Safety & Solicitor General Mike Morris, BC Greens Leader Sonia Furstenau

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