Elizabeth May gave last push off the fence

August 1, 2016 4:27 A.M.
Elizabeth May convinced at least one listener to jump off the fence

A comment on the Kamloops A.M. News Facebook page:

I was laid off from my job in the oil field about 16 months ago. When I moved home to Kamloops I was all for Ajax mine. Kamloops needs good jobs. So I chose to believe the government would make the right decision, "if they said it's safe it must be".

I also told myself that living in Westsyde meant "I live too far away to notice any of the negative impacts such as possible blasting noise, vibrations or dust". I felt that jobs were more important than any of the "possible" negatives. I even went to a pro-Ajax event.

Then I read an article that talked about how dozens of physicians were against Ajax and would be leaving if the mine were approved. I thought, "well sh*t I've been trying to get a doctor for 5 years and I wait months for specialists, even if only a couple follow through on their threat that is a couple too many!"

I decided to be open to the possibility that maybe, just maybe, having doctors in Kamloops was more important than having a few dozen more jobs that weren't likely to be filled by Kamloopsians anyway. So then I sat on the fence. Most days I was all for jobs at any cost.

Other days I was concerned about our doctor shortage and thought perhaps it really is just too close. From the top of Aberdeen you can see that it really is "right there". The more I tried to convince myself that jobs were really the most important thing, the less I believed myself.

After some of our city council did a mine tour in Quebec and Ontario and said that homes located near the mines had cracked foundations, I decided that I was really really glad that I live in Westsyde. I wouldn't want to be a home owner in Aberdeen after the mine opens. My fence sitting started to lean towards the "no" side.

Though I still felt like I was blissfully safe way out Westsyde, I was concerned for our neighbors in Aberdeen, concerned about the mine diverting Peterson Creek, and concerned about having an even harder time finding a doctor and an even longer wait list for specialists.

I went to the Elizabeth May event because I'm kind of a dork and thought it'd be cool to see a Canadian 'celebrity' up close (also it would put me only 1 degree of separation from my main man Mr. Trudeau Jr. ). She was as bedazzling as I expected. I left the event finally off the fence, I can say now that it really is just too close to Kamloops. There's too many uncertainties.

Our health and homes aren't something you experiment with. And also, I really want a family doctor again one day.

ERICA ELIZABETH

Brandon says:
August 5, 2016 12:32am

Liz,in no way does Aberdeen stand alone in this. I'm also in Westsyde and know many others that live here that are against this mine. I also know many miners that live in other parts of town that are against it...they are not against mining ,just this mine. And some of them want to move out of town ,including myself if this mine is built. It's way to close,and way to big and no good can come from it.I don't think the few folks that are for this mine that are from kamloops quite understand just how huge this mine will be and the health effects it will have on us all.And the suffering it will cause because Dr.s will be few and far between.All for what? A few hundred jobs or less and jobs that are not even promised to kamloopians . Yet sadly, it will be Kamloopians that will pay the price of having a ginormous mine built right on their doorstep !

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Liz says:
August 1, 2016 02:09pm

Erica,
Thanks for taking the time to write and recognizing the higher risks of the Ajax mine to fellow citizens who live in Aberdeen. I live in Aberdeen, moved here 4 years ago, and it is sure refreshing to hear that there are people who live in other parts of the City who are opposed to Ajax after giving detailed thought to the issues. Wish you the best in finding gainful employment and a family doctor.
Finding a doctor is very difficult, I am a diabetic and have been looking for a GP for over 3 years without success.

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