Taking a stand - May. 09, 2014
Tom Mosher, left, of Oak Bay, and Tony Reader of St. Stephen, are organizing residents of the area to travel to Fredericton on Tuesday to participate in a rally protesting the provincial government’s contract which would allow J.D. Irving extensive additional access to New Brunswick’s Crown land.
Tom Mosher and Tony Reader want residents of the Charlotte County region to sit up and take notice of the provincial Government’s intention regarding the future of Crown lands.
The two men, long-time friends who were active in canoe club excursions years ago, hope to encourage those same residents to take part in a rally next Tuesday in Fredericton.
The rally, scheduled for 12:30 p.m. will take place in front of the provincial Legislature building and is a protest against the government contract with J.D. Irving that gives the company substantial added access to Crown lands within New Brunswick for a 25-year period.
Anyone who wants to join Mosher and Reader Tuesday morning on a bus to Fredericton is asked to call Mosher at 466-4586 by Saturday, May 10 and to be at Mosher’s residence, 464 Route 170, by 9 a.m. Tuesday.
Mosher, of Oak Bay, and Reader, who lives in St. Stephen, say they hope the rally unites people throughout the province – landowners and municipal residents alike.
“This contract will affect everyone,” said Mosher.
“We want to stop the clear cut basically. The Crown land forest takeover is being given to pulp and paper corporations, primarily Irving, the biggest one of them all.”
Mosher and Reader are proposing a different scenario.
“Turn the Crown land back over, in time, to the people,” said Mosher.
Both men said everyone in the province needs to pay attention and take action.
“It’s important to everybody, because you have people going canoeing, people going fishing, hunting, bird watching, berry picking, so many activities in the forest,” said Mosher.
“You’re looking at, in the long time future, of having the whole forest, especially the Crown land and the private land, having it cut bald.”
Reader said the forest is the focus of so many interests, some of which were outlined by Mosher.
“When you look at the big picture, we all have an interest in a healthy forest and to keeping all these interests in harmony and balance with one another.”
The two men hope to encourage enough people to fill a bus for the trip to Fredericton next week.
They confirmed each individual who goes to Fredericton has been asked to bring with them a disk of wood from a log. Those disks will be placed on the lawn of the Legislature to represent what a clear cut province will look like and children attending are asked to bring their stuffed animals to place on those bits of woods, illustrating the animal habitats that will be affected if the legislation is passed.
“We used to be called the picture province,” said Reader. “You’d be absolutely shocked if you flew over it. I have a few years ago. The amount of raped forestland … God knows what it’s like now.
“When you clear everything out, it’s not natural.”
The two men want residents to inform themselves and suggested a visit to a website created by activist Charles Theriault – isourforestreallyours.com.