Mr. Speaker, it is with great sadness that I rise today to pay tribute to Jim Deva, who died unexpectedly in Vancouver on September 21.
Jim was so much a part of Vancouver that it is hard to verbalize the full impact of his life on our city and its people. He is a legend in the LGBTQ community. He successfully fought Canada Customs censors for decades for freedom of expression for the Little Sister's bookstore. Jim was a leading advocate against hate crimes and pioneered better police liaison and community action.
He inspired us, made us laugh, showed us courage and selflessness, and never shied away from challenging bigotry and injustice. He held the door open for many to come out.
This dear man will be hugely missed. It is hard to imagine our city without Jim. Our love and support goes out to his partner, Bruce Smyth, and his family and friends, as we grieve this terrible loss of a great advocate, champion, friend, mentor and leader in our community.