B.C.’s struggling forestry industry needs federal support: Minister Donaldson

During the annual Canadian Forest Ministers Conference in Saskatchewan, this week, B.C.’s forestry minister voiced the urgent need for federal government support for workers and communities impacted by the downturn in the forest sector.

Calling on the federal government, Doug Donaldson proposed the province’s deputy ministers and Canada’s deputy ministers develop an action plan that sets out the details for further federal funding.

“I took advantage of the fact there were federal officials at this meeting and used it as a forum to let other provinces know the really important urgent situation that B.C. is in,” Donaldson told the Tribune.

“The deputy minister informed me she already had discussions with Minister Sohi, as well as other ministries involved in the targeted interventions that we are seeking support for.”

Donaldson also hand delivered a three-page letter addressed to the Honourable Amarjeet Sohi, minister of natural resources, and met with the deputy minister, Christyne Tremblay, while at the conference.

“Across B.C., the industry has announced current and future reductions at 22 locations, including three permanent facility closures, 12 temporary facility shift reductions or closures, and eight indefinite facility shift reductions or closures,” he stated in the letter. “Collectively, more than 3,900 employees are impacted across 16 communities.”

Donaldson said he will be speaking again with Minister Sohi next week.

 

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IMAGE: BC Local News