Kitimat councillor and mayor still ask people to support picnic

Councillor Mary Murphy and Mayor Phil Germuth still encourage people to support the Labour Day picnic even if they aren't invited.

Councillor Mary Murphy is still encouraging people to attend the annual union-organized Labour Day picnic, even if Kitimat Council has been specifically excluded from the event.

Murphy asked for the letter from Unifor Local 2301, included in the August 17 council agenda package’s information packet, to be brought out under new business so she could speak to the issue.

The letter is the one, signed by the local Unifor Business Agent Martin McIlwrath, which says the Local 2301 executive has motioned to “not allow Kitimat Mayor & Council to attend our 2015 Labour Day picnic event.”

No one from Local 2301 has so far responded to the Sentinel’s request for comment, and we were told last week the entire executive was away on union business and unreachable.

An effort to reach Local 2300 also has not resulted in a returned phone call.

In reacting to the letter at the August 17 council meeting, Murphy said that as much as she’ll respect the union’s wishes she encouraged others not to boycott the event.

“I wanted to say I hope that everybody puts their differences aside and…attend the labour day picnic and make it a really successful event,” she said.

She also highlighted her own history in establishing the picnic as an event in Kitimat.

“I plan on following their wishes and not attend but I did want the community to know I was instrumental, along with many of my family members, of making that day a success. It’s advocating [improved] working conditions for labour and it’s a really good social and educational event. It’s in the honour of labour.”

Mayor Phil Germuth said he hasn’t had much conversation with 2300 members on this issue but he has had a few words with 2301 members.

“I’ve heard through the grapevine that some of [2300] workers weren’t happy [with the letter],” he said, but said he’s had a number of 2301 workers come by and all have been quite upset over it.

His contact with the 2301 executive itself has been limited since the release of the letter. Germuth recalled what he felt was a very cordial conversation he had with 2301 president Sean O’Driscoll at Rio Tinto Alcan’s first pour special event in July where relationship building was brought up, but that was it until he learned they wouldn’t be invited to the picnic.

“We had a good time. We talked about building the relations,” said Germuth of that event in July.

Germuth also encourages people to attend the event and to not shut it out due to this current controversy.

“We’re not advocating anyone boycott it. You should go out and have a good time,” he said, adding that he understands it’s an executive-specific decision and he isn’t holding any hard feelings on this to the general 2301 membership.

 

Just Posted

Kitimat’s Water Quality Advisory, which has been in place for just over a week, has been lifted. (Black Press file photo)
Water Quality Advisory in Kitimat lifted

The district has been under a Water Quality Advisory since June 2

On June 16 at 6 p.m., the Kitimat Chamber of Commerce will be hosting a public presentation and discussion with Happipad, a social enterprise, to talk about solutions for affordable housing Kitimat. (Happipad photo)
Affordable housing to be focus of Kitimat Chamber of Commerce meeting

Figures indicate the average Kitimat household needs to make more than $92,000 a year

(District of Kitimat logo)
Hirsch Creek Bridge restricted to single lane traffic

The district is restricting the bridge traffic to legal highway loads only

Artist’s illustration of the proposed Kitimat LNG facility at Bish Cove near Kitimat. (Kitimat LNG illustration)
Haisla Nation surprised by Woodside pull out from Kitimat LNG project

Haisla Nation council states its main focus is now on developing the Haisla-led Cedar LNG project

(Northern Health logo)
Pop-up vaccine clinic tomorrow at the Save-on-Foods parking lot in Kitimat

The clinic will be this Friday, June 11 from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

At an outdoor drive-in convocation ceremony, Mount Royal University bestows an honorary Doctor of Laws on Blackfoot Elder and residential school survivor Clarence Wolfleg in Calgary on Tuesday, June 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
‘You didn’t get the best of me’: Residential school survivor gets honorary doctorate

Clarence Wolfleg receives honorary doctorate from Mount Royal University, the highest honour the school gives out

Two-year-old Ivy McLeod laughs while playing with Lucky the puppy outside their Chilliwack home on Thursday, June 10, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO: B.C. family finds ‘perfect’ puppy with limb difference for 2-year-old Ivy

Ivy has special bond with Lucky the puppy who was also born with limb difference

A million-dollar ticket was sold to an individual in Vernon from the Lotto Max draw Friday, June 11, 2021. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Lottery ticket worth $1 million sold in Vernon

One lucky individual holds one of 20 tickets worth $1 million from Friday’s Lotto Max draw

“65 years, I’ve carried the stories in my mind and live it every day,” says Jack Kruger. (Athena Bonneau)
‘Maybe this time they will listen’: Survivor shares stories from B.C. residential school

Jack Kruger, living in Syilx territory, wasn’t surprised by news of 215 children’s remains found on the grounds of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School

A logging truck carries its load down the Elaho Valley near in Squamish, B.C. in this file photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chuck Stoody
Squamish Nation calls for old-growth logging moratorium in its territory

The nation says 44% of old-growth forests in its 6,900-square kilometre territory are protected while the rest remain at risk

Flowers and cards are left at a makeshift memorial at a monument outside the former Kamloops Indian Residential School to honour the 215 children whose remains are believed to have been discovered buried near the city in Kamloops, B.C., on Monday, May 31, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
‘Pick a Sunday:’ Indigenous leaders ask Catholics to stay home, push for apology

Indigenous leaders are calling on Catholics to stand in solidarity with residential school survivors by not attending church services

“They will never be forgotten, every child matters,” says Sioux Valley Chief Jennifer Bone in a video statement June 1. (Screen grab)
104 ‘potential graves’ detected at site of former residential school in Manitoba

Sioux Valley Dakota Nation working to identify, repatriate students buried near former Brandon residential school

The Queen Victoria statue at the B.C. legislature was splattered with what looks like red paint on Friday. (Nicole Crescenzi/News Staff)
Queen Victoria statue at B.C. legislature vandalized Friday

Statue splattered with red paint by old growth forest proponents

Most Read