Fifteen trucks left Princeton at 9 a.m. Wednesday, Sept. 25, 2019. When the convoy hits Vancouver it is expected to be 200 trucks strong. (Andrea DeMeer/Princeton Spotlight)

70 trucks and counting: B.C. loggers en route to Vancouver to protest job losses

The initial convoy left Prince George at 2 a.m. Wednesday, stopping through the Cariboo

It was an early-morning start for dozens of B.C. Interior loggers heading from Prince George to Vancouver to make noise over job losses in the province’s once-booming forest industry.

The initial convoy left Prince George at 2 a.m. Wednesday, stopping through Williams Lake at 5 a.m. As the group heads to the Vancouver Convention Centre, up to 200 logging trucks are expected to join along the route.

About 100 trucks from the north, including Prince George, Quesnel, Williams Lake and 100 Mile House, were seen on the roads in 100 Mile, receiving honks of support and more trucks as they travel through rural communities impacted by mill curtailments and closures.

The Rally to Vancouver truck protest, organized by Merritt logger Howard McKimmon and others, is shedding light on the “industry in crisis” as mayors and MLAs from across the province converge in the Lower Mainland for its annual Union of BC Municipalities convention.

It’s no doubt that the recent hits to the forest sector will be top of mind for mayors in the Interior who have seen first-hand the job losses felt by their community members.

READ MORE: ‘We’re all getting hit hard’: Cariboo loggers to join truck rally and protest job losses

This year has seen four mills permanently close in the region, putting as many as 700 workers out of a job. There have been a further 13 indefinite closures which has impacted an estimated 1,000 workers, as well as hundreds more impacted due to curtailments.

The main goal, the group of loggers said, is to call for immediate changes to stumpage rates in B.C., which are based on the prices that companies pay for logs through BC Timber Sales, and bring back appurtenancy – an agreement that ties timber in a given region to specific sawmills.

In the meantime, the B.C. government has announced early retirement and training funds for forest workers out of jobs, in-part funded through $25 million originally meant for the rural dividend fund. The reallocation of funds has been met with protest by rural mayors.

READ MORE: B.C. communities protest transfer of aid funds to those hit by sawmill closures

– with files from Angie Mindus, Williams Lake Tribune


@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Kootenay doctor among 82 physicians, dentists calling on province for mandatory mask rule

Open letter says masks should be worn in indoor public spaces, public transportation or in crowds

Structures not threatened by wildfires burning in the Arrow and Kootenay Lakes region

Official says more lightning-caused fires could occur in region over next 36 hours

West Kootenay region experiences drier-than-normal July: Report

The region only received around 57% of its normal precipitation during the month

No new COVID cases in Kootenay-Boundary

As of July 30, there were no additional cases in the previous two weeks

Plane crashes into Nelson supermarket parking lot

Pilot and passenger have minor injuries

Dwindling B.C. bamboo supply leaves Calgary Zoo biologists worried about pandas

Zoo has been trying to send pandas back to China since May

Facebook launches its new TikTok clone, Instagram Reels

Facebook has a long tradition of cloning competitive services

B.C. Appeal Court prevents Victoria woman from using the term ‘death midwife’ in her job

Pashta MaryMoon claimed she had been providing “death-care services” for more than 40 years

‘We all have anxieties’: B.C.’s top doctor addresses return-to-school fears amid COVID-19

Dr. Bonnie Henry promises school restart plan safe for B.C. kids

Abbotsford mom worried about her two kids in Beirut following explosion

Shelley Beyak’s children were abducted by their dad in 2018

Young Canadians, hospitality workers bear the brunt of mental strain in 2020: report

A study by Morneau Shepell points to economic uncertainty in the pandemic as the cause for angst

Health Canada recalling more than 50 hand sanitizers in evolving list

Organization says to stop using products listed, and to consult a health-care professional

Airborne hot dog strikes Greater Victoria pedestrian

Police called to 4200-block of Quadra Street for hot dog incident

Most Read