Support is strong for workers at the Chemainus sawmill. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Support is strong for workers at the Chemainus sawmill. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Support for strikers keeping the faith

Donations making a difference as labour dispute drags on

Tough times call for a community to help lessen the blow.

With the United Steelworkers and Western Forest Products labour dispute past the five-month mark and likely to continue well into the new year, barring a Christmas miracle, the impact is clearly being felt at this point by many families.

Workers with younger children are surely having to stretch their budgets to the extreme after this length of time.

This is when so many people from different walks of life pitch in to provide a helping hand.

The donations being made either directly to the picket line at the Chemainus sawmill or indirectly through collection spots such as the union hall on Brae Road in Duncan are helping to make a difference. Particularly at Christmastime, it’s difficult to cut back on food or spending on presents.

That, in turn, has an impact on the business community. The longer the strike goes, businesses certainly expect to see a decrease in spending by those affected.

Help has been coming from so many sources – school children, seniors, community organizations. Collections have been ongoing and bringing welcome relief to so many.

Shannon Carlow of Crofton and Melanie Cinkant of Ladysmith teamed up without having previously known each other to support the workers. As Carlow pointed out, some of the most generous people are those who have the least.

That’s the wonderful thing about this area and how everyone works together in a time of need. This is clearly a crisis, with the duration of the strike dragging out far longer than anyone expected.

One has to hope there will be an end soon for everyone concerned. It might – and probably should – involve some form of provincial government intervention to support our struggling forest industry.

The long-term effects can be devastating, as this community knows all too well from previous strikes and closure of the prior mill in the early 1980s. There are fears about the future of the Chemainus sawmill again that can only be allayed – temporarily, at least – once an agreement’s in place.

As a community, we look out for each other. That benefits everyone because you never know when the shoe will be on the other foot.

Just Posted

Rob Kernachan editorial cartoon.
Editorial cartoonist focuses on Orange Shirt Day

Orange Shirt Day is the feature of Rob Kernachan’s contribution this week.… Continue reading

The grads of 2021 at Chemainus Secondary School will be resilient based on their experiences through COVID. (Photo by Don Bodger)
Making the most of grad events

Class of 2021 will carry resilience with them throughout their years based on COVID experience

COVID-19 has made the 2020-21 school year at Chemainus Secondary School interesting and challenging for graduates. (File photo by Don Bodger)
Chemainus Secondary School 2021 graduates

Here’s the young men and women who are embarking on life’s next journey

Girls just wanna have fun. From left: Danielle Dela Cruz, Melanie Cheng, Hanna Starkie, Camille Storteboom, Rebecca Rhode, Sian Diewert and Brianne Pamminger at the Crofton seawalk. (Photo by Alana Starkie)
Prom night brings some semblance of normalcy for 2021 Chemainus grads

Being together at least provides class members with some comfort

Tom Millard served his community well for so many years with the Chemainus Fire Department. (Photo submitted)
Millard dedicated himself to community service

Long-time Chemainus Fire Department member and chief remembered for his commitment

People line up to get their COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination centre, Thursday, June 10, 2021 in Montreal. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Vaccines, low COVID case counts increase Father’s Day hope, but risk is still there

Expert says people will have to do their own risk calculus before popping in on Papa

The Co-op gas station at Whiskey Creek is burning after a camper van exploded while refueling just before 4 p.m. on Thursday, June 17, 2021. (FACEBOOK PHOTO)
Exploding camper van torches Highway 4 gas station between Qualicum Beach and Port Alberni

Highway traffic blocked after Whiskey Creek gas station erupts into flames

Helen Austin performing with Trent Freeman at the 2018 Vancouver Island MusicFest. Austin is one of the many performers listed for the 2021 event.
Vancouver Island MusicFest goes virtual for 2021

Black Press to stream 25 hours of programming July 9-11

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Greater father involvement in the home leads to improved childhood development and increased marital satisfaction, says expert. (Black Press Media file photo)
Vancouver Island researcher finds lack of father involvement a drag on gender equality

Working women still taking on most child and household duties in Canada: UVic professor

FILE – A science class at L.A. Matheson Secondary in Surrey, B.C. on March 12, 2021. (Lauren Collins/Surrey Now Leader)
Teachers’ union wants more COVID transmission data as B.C. prepares for back-to-school

BCTF says that details will be important as province works on plan for September

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry outlines B.C.’s COVID-19 restart plan, May 25, 2021, including larger gatherings and a possible easing of mandatory masks on July 1. (B.C. government photo)
B.C. records 120 new COVID-19 cases, second vaccines accelerating

Lower Pfizer deliveries for early July, Moderna shipments up

A Heffley Creek peacock caught not one - but two - lifts on a logging truck this month. (Photo submitted)
Heffley Creek-area peacock hops logging trucks in search of love

Peacock hitched two lifts in the past month

The Calgary skyline is seen on Friday, Sept. 15, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
2 deaths from COVID-19 Delta variant in Alberta, 1 patient was fully immunized

Kerry Williamson with Alberta Health Services says the patients likely acquired the virus in the hospital

Most Read