Rob Shaw: Forestry crisis a huge risk to B.C. NDP

OPINION: A failure to understand the depth of despair of forestry workers could derail NDP hopes to win a majority in the next election.

By / Rob Shaw | Vancouver Sun

VICTORIA — Transportation Minister Claire Trevena received an uncomfortable reminder last week of the gulf between the political bubble of the legislature in Victoria and the real world, after she was blasted by forestry workers in her North Island riding.

Trevena held a public meeting in Campbell River, in which more than 50 people gathered to vent their frustration at the inaction of her government to mitigate the forestry crisis. The gathering was many months in the making, she explained, because she’d been busy at the capital doing the work of minister.

A 30-minute video of the encounter showed the genuine anger, and in some cases desperation, being experienced by mill workers, contractors, employers, truck loggers and striking Western Forest Product employees as they shared stories of losing their livelihoods, families and homes.