PenderBlog From The Pender Islands Of Canada

November 16, 2009

De-staffing of lighthouses put on hold

Filed under: Nautical bits — Jocko @ 1:36 pm

From the Public Service Alliance of Canada (PSAC)

October 30, 2009

On September 30, 2009, Gail Shea, Minister of Fisheries and Oceans issued a statement saying that the controversial plan to de-staff lighthouses was put on hold and that she was asking the Coast Guard to undertake a further review of the additional services provided by lighthouse staff on the two coasts.

We welcome the Minister’s decision as evidence of the pressure that was mounting from the communities residing near the lighthouses and the workers. Two regions of the PSAC, British-Columbia and the Atlantic region, along with PSAC‘s Union of Canadian Transportation Employees, conducted a very effective campaign and it became obvious that Minister Shea’s office was overwhelmed with messages criticizing the plan.

However, we hope this review is more than a mere delaying tactic with an already forgone conclusion i.e. the lighthouse keepers will be reassigned as was planned all along.

We will be vigilant. We want to be informed as to who will be doing the review of additional services, how long it will take, and when it will be made public. We invite the Minister to hold some public consultations in the fishing communities where the services provided by lighthouse keepers are well known and understood.

Putting this controversial plan on hold is a step in the right direction. We will be following this file with great attention hoping that the Minister will see the light and will abandon it definitely.

For more information on how to be involved in this campaign, please visit:

• PSAC BC Region website
• Union of Canadian Transportation Employee’s website

John Gordon,
PSAC National president

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