Pulp and Paper Canada

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CEP calls on government to stop the ‘bleeding’


December 6, 2005
By Pulp & Paper Canada

Recent mill closures have incited the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union of Canada to call upon the gove…

Recent mill closures have incited the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union of Canada to call upon the government for help.

“[The] announcement by Domtar that it will close three mills in Ontario and Quebec as well as shut down two paper machines in Ottawa is the latest in a long and disturbing litany of cutbacks and closures,” said president of the CEP, Brian Payne.

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“We are now at the point where upwards of 16 communities across the country are facing economic devastation because of mill cutbacks and closures,” he added. “The Liberals made a $1.5 billion pre-election announcement of financial aid for the industry but we need to see more than an announcement. We need action from Mr. Martin to stop the bleeding.”

Payne is urging the government to immediately direct its energy and resources to this problem, contending, “the time for direct and urgent action is now. Mr. Martin and the appropriate provincial authorities needs to meet with industry and all the stakeholders to put an end to these closures and to support workers and their families.”

Payne likened the job losses at General Motors when the company moved out of Oshawa and St. Catharines, ON to the situation characterizing the forestry industry, and acknowledged that in both instances, the government pledged financial support to lessen the blow to the affected communities. However, he argues that the committed capital needs to translate into the creation and maintenance of employment.

“The federal and provincial governments have announced various aid programs but they need to clearly link that financial support to the maintenance of jobs.”


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