The below letter was sent to Prime Minister Trudeau, Leader of the Official Opposition Erin O’Toole and Leader of the NDP Jagmeet Singh today from Building Trades of Alberta Executive Director, Terry Parker.
Nov. 16, 2020
Office of the Prime Minister
80 Wellington Street
Ottawa, ON K1A 0A2
Dear Prime Minister,
I am writing to you today in my capacity as Executive Director of the Building Trades of Alberta, on behalf of more than 60,000 skilled trades women and men, from 18 local unions across the province.
As 2020 draws to a close, I don’t need to tell you how hard this year has been on Canadians. The devastating effects COVID-19 has had on everything from public health to the economy has left no community untouched.
Here in Alberta, both the pandemic and a sharp decline in oil prices have dealt our province a devastating double blow. This has left Alberta, which has contributed greatly to the national interest through both healthy transfer payments and by training and providing tens of thousands of skilled trades professionals, in a difficult situation.
Alberta’s economy is projected to shrink by an historic 8.8 per cent, employment is expected to fall by 7 per cent and the unemployment rate will likely average 11.6 per cent. Commodity prices are anticipated to remain low, the energy sector’s recovery will be sluggish, and a continued reduction in consumer spending will do serious damage to small businesses, shops, restaurants and more.
Building Trades of Alberta will not sit quiet or wait for others to advocate on our behalf while this happens. The destruction being done to Canada’s economic engine is significant and Ottawa must help fix it.
While the province is working hard to support jobs and economic growth, I, along with Ian Robb, Chairman of the Building Trades of Alberta and Canadian Director of UNITE HERE!, would like to meet with you virtually to discuss ways we can work together at the federal level to support projects in Alberta, from public transit, to Keystone XL, green infrastructure and more, that will help foster Alberta’s, and Canada’s, economic recovery.
We will make ourselves available for any time that’s convenient to you.
Sir, the time to act is now, and as we navigate how to support our country and the communities that make it up, we also need to be unified in our efforts to support each other through COVID-19’s second wave, and beyond.
I look forward to hearing from you.
Executive Director, Building Trades of Alberta
Click here to view signed letter.