Letter to Elected Officials – Coverage of Protests in The Wilson Creek Forest (CoastFM and YouTube)

From: Elphinstone Logging Focus
Date: Wed, Dec 5, 2012 at 6:57 PM
Subject: Coverage of Protests in The Wilson Creek Forest (CoastFM and YouTube)
To: council@sechelt.ca, Mayor John Henderson , scpi@telus.net, Donna Shugar
Cc: nicholas.simons.mla@leg.bc.ca, The Local Editor, Ian Jacques, info1@sccf.ca

Dear Elected Sunshine Coast Officials:

For coverage on the logging arrests in the Wilson Creek Forest go to:
http://www.917coastfm.com/coast_news/news/Local/2012/12/04/Another-Anti-Logging-Demonstration-in-Sechelt

To watch a 16min. YouTube video of the peacfeul protest and eventual arrests, copy/paste the link into your browser:

This could be the very first time that a B.C. based Community Forest license has called upon the RCMP to arrest members of the community that it operates in, including 1st Nations hereditary family members.

Part of the sustainability model contained in the Community Forest charter is for a proper community input process. If members who live in the operating area identify a forest that contains bio-diversity features and/or high recreational values, and brings it to the attention of the licensee then the licensee is obliged to consider alternative management options, such as setting aside the zone. This was very much the case with The Wilson Creek Forest as Elphinstone Logging Focus (ELF) had been in contact with Sunshine Coast Community Forest early on with our proposal to have the area jointly managed by our volunteer group and SCCF – based on the Hidden Grove model.

It was also well know by local elected officials of the proposal, and yet not one of these officials came forward to support ELF’s proposal. They knew that 100’s of their own community members had shown interest in this Wilson Creek protected area proposal. The lack of political will in this case was astounding, and still not fully understood by residents.

When the SCCF Operations Manager, Dave Lasser, was asked by ELF if he thought the Wilson Creek Forest contained high recreational potential in light of the overwhelming interest that the Wilson Creek Forest had generated in the last 16 months, he replied and I paraphrase: ” I think there are alot of other areas on the Sunshine Coast with high-recreational potential”.

Lasser’s reply was a classic dodge the question remark He very well knew that WC Forest was now a highly used and cherished by the community and could become as well used as the only other low elevation protected forest (Cliff Gliker Park) between Sechelt and Gibsons, yet he and the SCCF Board allowed the cutting to proceed.

The order to log this key area, was a complete betrayal of the community and of the Community Forest terms of reference regarding conducting proper forest stewardship.

Ross Muirhead
Forest Protection Campaigner
www.loggingfocus.org

See ongoing discussions, pictures, and the Arrests – Wilson Creek Forest albums on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/elphinstonelogging.focus

https://www.facebook.com/elphinstonelogging.focus/photos_albums

 

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