A group of protesters gather at the entrance to Fairview Terminal in Prince Rupert.

First Nations workers protest Fairview Terminal expansion contracts going to out-of-town firms

A group of First Nations workers are protesting the awarding of contracts related to Fairview Terminal expansion to out-of-town firms.

A group of First Nations workers who have seen contracts related to the expansion of Fairview Terminal go to out-of-town businesses have taken to protesting at the entrance of the terminal.

“We’re protesting against the port authority. They are not holding up their end of the bargain that was put in place several years ago to employ Kitkatla, Metlakatla and Port Simpson for Phase 2 of Fairview Terminal. Fraser River Pile and Dredge got the primary contract and now we turn around and Bear Creek Contracting has the contract for the blasting and moving the material,” said Don Nelson of Kitkatla, noting members of Kitkatla, Metlakatla and Lax Kw’alaams are all participating in the action.

“We’re trying to get our people into the workforce and hold the port authority to account … there are a lot of people who are qualified to do the job who live here.”

The agreement in question was signed by the Federal Government, Prince Rupert Port Authority and Coast Tsimshian First Nations in 2011 and stated First Nations would be provided with preferred contracting opportunities associated with the development of the container terminal development.

However, Prince Rupert Port Authority manager of corporate communications Michael Gurney said the organization is living up to the 2011 deal.

“First Nations joint ventures, under the terms of the benefit agreement, do have preferential treatment, but the winning contractor needs to have a cost competitive bid. One of the bids received by one of the joint ventures, in this case, was no cost competitive so it was not chosen,” he explained, adding the issue surrounding contracts being awarded is related to companies vying for work from primary contractors Fraser River Pile and Dredge and Bel Contracting.

“The terms continue to be honoured and we continue to enjoy a good relationship with First Nations joint ventures … and have been working with them to conduct outreach to several communities in the region including potential employment opportunities.”

Nelson said the group has had conversations with the port authority around this subject, but has now taken to protesting the awarding of the contracts. This is not the first time this has been an issue since the expansion of the terminal was announced, with protests also taking place in April.

Just Posted

Passport services expanded to 300 locations across Canada

At Service Canada outlets officers can review applications, validate supporting documents, collect fees and forward applications

Microscopic parasite found in Prince Rupert water affecting thousands

More than 12,000 residents affected by the boil water advisory issued Dec. 14

VIDEO: Third Annual Fun Run

The Prince Rupert Runners Club held its third annual fun run Sunday

Prince Rupert Rampage come up short in Terrace

River Kings beat the Rampage 4-3 in overtime Saturday night

WEB POLL: Where are you getting your clean water?

Prince Rupert is under a boil water advisory for possibly a week, or longer

Ryan Reynolds to narrate movie about B.C.’s Great Bear Rainforest

Vancouver-born actor known for Deadpool movies will voice film to be released Feb. 15, 2019

Shop Prince Rupert is back

These businesses are all taking part in the Shop Prince Rupert event until December 21 at noon

10-lane George Massey bridge too big, B.C. study says

Consultants say replacement tunnel cost similar to new bridge

Canada’s robust credit rating should calm unease about federal deficits: Trudeau

Trudeau says Canada’s long-running triple-A rating means experts have confidence in his government’s approach to the economy

CIBC shrinks event after Whistler mayor irks oil producers

After Whistler sent a letter to a Calgary-based oilsands giant, several energy firms said they would back out of the CIBC event.

Couple caught up in B.C. Legislature bomb plot to learn their fate

John Nuttall and Amanda Korody were arrested as part of an undercover RCMP sting on Canada Day 2013

Trial rights of accused spy for China at risk, lawyer tells Supreme Court

The lawyer for a man accused of trying to spy for China says federal foot-dragging over secrecy is endangering his client’s right to timely justice.

‘Recall fatigue’: Canadians may avoid certain foods over holidays

In the winter, Canada’s supply of fresh fruit and vegetables tends to come from very specific areas.

Airline passengers could get up to $2,400 for delays, damaged bags: Canadian agency

Canadian Transportation Agency is releasing draft regulations for public feedback

Most Read