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Mondial Fall 2021: Obituary of Ian Waddell

By Fergus Watt

Ian Waddell was a dedicated world federalist who participated in both national and Vancouver Branch meetings. He died at his home in Vancouver on March 14.

Gregarious, with a boyish smile and a fondness for storytelling, Ian enjoyed successful careers as a lawyer, politician, filmmaker and author.

For 14 years, Ian served as a New Democratic Party MP, first for Vancouver – Kingsway, and then for Port Moody – Coquitlam Port – Coquitlam. One of Ian’s greatest political achievements was the key role he played in drafting the landmark ‘Section 35’ of the 1982 Constitution, recognizing Aboriginal and treaty rights.

In 1996, he was elected as an MLA for the riding of Vancouver – Fraserview and later served as BC Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture. He helped secure in B.C. law the film tax credit, giving birth to a billion-dollar industry, often called ‘Hollywood North’.

As a politician he participated in the work of Parliamentarians for Global Action. He remained active in associations of current and former parliamentarians and supported campaigns for a UN Parliamentary Assembly that would democratize global governance.

He was a member of the Board of WFM – Canada since 2014 and was particularly proud of the organization’s contributions, in Canada and internationally, to the establishment of the International Criminal Court.

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