Ontario gov't excludes Northern communities from "species at risk" hearings



    THUNDER BAY, ON, April 20 /CNW Telbec/ - "The Ontario government is
intent on appearing to do the right thing for political gain when it comes to
its "species at risk" act, but it clearly has not been listening to those who
stand to lose the most from it."
    That statement from the Ontario Vice-President of Canada's largest
forestry union, Cec Makowski.
    In response to a direct question from the Communications, Energy and
Paperworkers Union of Canada at a round-table meeting in Thunder Bay
yesterday, Ontario's Natural Resources Minister David Ramsay said that public
hearings on the bill would be held in Toronto only.
    "The Liberal government is isolating itself from those most impacted by
its decisions," says Mr. Makowski. "The government has abandoned the
communities of Northern Ontario where workers in forest-dependent communities
have already been devastated by the crisis in that sector.
    "CEP members and others in these communities have some major concerns
about the proposed legislation - concerns they will not be permitted to air,
thanks to the Ontario government's decision to hear only from Torontonians.
    "We need significant public consultation to occur all across Ontario, not
just in Toronto," he adds, noting that "all stakeholders -- unions,
environmentalists, municipal leaders, Aboriginal groups, farmers, and others
-- should have an opportunity to air their concerns.
    "It's an important piece of legislation, but it needs to be thought
through."




For further information:

For further information: Cec Makowski, (905) 371-6297

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Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union of Canada

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