BURNABY: New numbers released by the Independent Contractors and Businesses Association (ICBA) on Thursday show that hundreds of Site C workers come from across B.C. Every region of the province is home to people who rely on employment at the Site C Dam.
“While the dam is nearly 1,300 kilometres away from where [NDP Leader and Premier-designate] John Horgan and [Green Party Leader] Andrew Weaver live, there are people in every part of B.C. – including their south Vancouver Island ridings – who rely on Site C to feed their families and pay their bills,” said Chris Gardner, President of ICBA. “Those jobs are now at risk as a result of the NDP-Greens, who seem to be grasping for any excuse to kill Site C – a clean energy project that will provide hydroelectricity for B.C. for the next hundred years and more.”
Gardner noted that at least seven Site C workers list Sooke, in Horgan’s riding, as their hometown. “Will John Horgan explain in person to those constituents why he’s putting their jobs in jeopardy?” Gardner said. “He hasn’t bothered to go to Fort St. John to hear the concerns of the thousands of men and working working on the job site – will he ignore the ones in his own backyard too?”
Site C workers by region (click HERE for a further breakdown by individual communities):
- Lower Mainland / Sea to Sky (Pemberton to Aldergrove) – 144
- Kamloops area (Armstrong to Williams Lake) – 89
- Prince George area (Burns Lake to Valemount) – 118
- Fraser Valley and Canyon (Abbotsford to Merritt) – 41
- Vancouver Island and Sunshine Coast – 174
- Kelowna/Vernon area (Lumby to Westbank) – 99
- Penticton area (Naramata to Osoyoos) – 39
These numbers do not include several other B.C. communities, nor the Peace River Regional District, where 35 per cent of Site C workers live.
“Site C spent more than a decade going through environmental assessments and regulatory reviews, and was signed off by both the federal and provincial governments,” said Gardner. “On top of that, Site C has faced 14 separate court actions and won every single one of them. At ICBA, we talk a lot about the need to ‘Get to Yes.’ On Site C, we need government to ‘Stick to Yes.’”
ICBA says it has been fighting hard to keep Site C workers on the job. On Thursday, 2,522 people went to work on Site C.
“It’s difficult for people working on this project and in construction generally to hear the NDP and the Greens talking about cancelling this project and more than a little depressing hear Andrew Weaver call Site C jobs ‘temporary,’” said Gardner. “When Andrew Weaver goes to Fort St. John and calls construction jobs ‘artificial,’ he demeans the hard work of the men and women who get up every day and head to a construction site.”
In recent weeks, ICBA says it has fought for Site C through its pink slip campaign, its poster campaign in Fort St. John, hiring a plane to tow a pro-Site C banner over the Throne Speech in Victoria, and generating more than 2,400 emails in support of Site C through www.get2yes.icba.ca.
For a full list of cities where Site C workers hail from, click HERE.