A $5-million B.C. government support fund for coastal logging contractors affected by the ongoing labour dispute between the United Steel Workers and Western Forest Products has officially launched.
The funding is intended for independent contractors who have purchased logging equipment and are in need of support to avoid foreclosure of their purchases.
The financial support will take the form of long-term loans at commercial rates for eligible logging equipment after the province reviews and approves a submitted application.
The funding will then be sent to directly to leaseholders, financial institutions and equipment companies for the logging equipment, and not the individuals who filed the applications.
Details on loan eligibility and application information can be found on the B.C. government's website online here.
The labour dispute between Western Forest Products and the Steelworkers union began on July 1, 2019, and affects approximately 3,000 British Columbians, many of which live on Vancouver Island.
After many rounds of failed negotiations, the union and forestry company are set to return to the bargaining table on Sunday. The meeting was called by veteran B.C. mediators Vince Ready and Amanda Rogers.