I’m writing in response to Neil Godbout's article holding Canfor accountable for permanently closing the pulp side of PG Pulp and Paper. It’s attached to the Facebook page of The Independent Business and Contractors Association.
Neil's quote in article: "That being the case, why should the out-of-work employees give their severance cheques back to Pattison by shopping at the four Save-On-Foods stores in Prince George? Why should they listen to the two Pattison radio stations and watch the Pattison TV station?"
Neil's quote, adding fuel to IBCA's fire, has IBCA calling to boycott these businesses to hurt Pattison.
This action gives zero thought to approximately 600 UFCW unionized employees.
It gives zero consideration to the employees of Pattison’s communication stations, who contribute daily to this community and surrounding areas, doing great work keeping us informed and entertained.
This boycott forgets that 600 Save-On employees, along with the communication workers, are neighbours, fathers, mothers, family, and friends.
Grocery workers like me are spouses of pulp mill workers and some are single parents, family members, neighbours, friends, first-time workers, seniors supplementing pensions and post-secondary education students. We pay taxes, vote, volunteer and spend hard-earned dollars in PG proudly wearing swag from community events. We too, are a heartbeat in this town.
During the pandemic we were called essential and heroes. We worked through it all. We didn't get to stay home. We were in the thick of it, facing the good, bad and ugly moods of our society.
We cried with lonely scared people. We gave comfort and support as we could in one of the few social outlets available that many missed, 7 a.m. to 10 p.m., 7 days a week.
It's everyday workers, in an already reeling community, the boycott threatens. Not Canfor. Not Pattison. It puts another 1.000 jobs in jeopardy and it will have a detrimental ripple that will spread outwards.
Where are those numbers in Neil’s article?
Shame on Neil for irresponsible statements in that article and shame on the IBCA calling a boycott on approximately 1,000 workers in this town because of who we are employed by.
Shame on them.
A special thank you to those customers, mostly mill workers and trades people, who came in and told me how appalled this boycott was even called.