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Gay man runs with NPA for Vancouver park board

Stéphane Mouttet describes himself as ‘a proud member of the city’s LGBTQ community’

Stéphane Mouttet says Vancouverites need to be consulted more on park board policy. Credit: npavancouver2014.ca

Non-Partisan Association (NPA) candidate Stéphane Mouttet says that after years of community involvement it seemed logical to take the next step and become involved in civic politics.

As a concierge with top luxury hotels, the candidate for the Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation says he’s been a strong voice for tourism for years and loves to showcase Vancouver’s beautiful parks and attractions to visitors. Now, he says, he wants to consult with locals, since they are the greatest beneficiaries of park board undertakings and need to be consulted on issues of importance. It’s not just about implementing policy, he says: “It’s listening to people.”

He believes Vancouverites are insufficiently consulted by their municipal representatives.

He also believes that safety remains an issue for members of the LGBT community, not only in the city’s parks, but also on its streets. “I don’t think we see enough police officers walking in downtown Vancouver,” he says. “We don’t have many [park] rangers either. We used to have them moving on bikes and roller blades.”

Mouttet is concerned about the lack of city programming for the queer community. “We live in the West End, and there’s a lot of gay concentration and there’s not a lot of programming for the gay community,” he says. “There’s not a community centre which we can use.” The community needs places other than businesses such as coffee shops in which to meet and hang out, he says.

According to his website, Mouttet was born in Montreal and moved to France when he was adopted by a French family when he was only a year old. He graduated from Paris’s International Concierge Institute and spent a year in the French army before moving back to Canada 10 years ago.

Mouttet has served on the regional board of Les Clefs d’Or Canada, an international professional association of hotel concierges, and says he was instrumental in creating a social-media presence for the local branch.

Mouttet also describes himself on his NPA candidate website as “a proud member of the city’s LGBTQ community” and “an advocate for inclusivity and the celebration of Vancouver’s diverse population.”