Cariboo Chilcotin MLA Donna Barnett will be speaking at Thursday’s Mackenzie Matters rally taking place Thursday, Aug. 22. Monica Lamb-Yorski photo

MLA Barnett joins list of speakers for Mackenzie Matters rally Thursday

Barnett said she was invited to attend

Cariboo Chilcotin MLA Donna Barnett has been invited to attend a forest industry crisis rally in Mackenzie on Thursday.

“I am going to listen to their concerns and then speak about rural development as critic for rural development, and the lack of and response from the Minister of Forests,” Barnett said. “It is unbelievable that Minister Donaldson took two months to write a letter to the federal government for help.”

Read more: B.C.’s struggling forestry industry needs federal support: Minister Donaldson

Barnett said communities had been asking the minister to write a letter.

“We write a letter at the last minute before an election? These communities need help,” she said. “Our communities here need help.”

According to the Mackenzie Matters Facebook page, Minister Donaldson will be attending the rally, which will start at noon at the Ministry of Forests district office.

Speeches will begin at 1:30 p.m., followed by a barbecue and entertainment.

Other speakers include Fort St. John’s acting mayor Tony Zabinsky, Peter Ewart from Stand Up for the North Committee, Regional District of Fraser Fort George-Crooked River-Parsnip director Pat Crook, Vince Lukacs, UNIFOR National representative, Gary Fiege, president, and Todd Smith, first vice-president of Public and Private Workers of Canada, Dawson Creek mayor Dale Bumstead, MLA Mike Morris, MP Bob Zimmer, MLA John Rustad, Trudy Klassen from North Matters, Brian O’Rourke, president of the United Steelworkers local 1-2017,

Barnett said she will be driving to Mackenzie on Thursday and hopes to make it in time for the parade that is planned as part of the rally.

Read more: B.C. government seeks advice on reviving Interior forest industry

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