Manitoba’s NDP and Progressive Conservative parties are engaged in a war of words over which party is more supportive of mining in the run-up to the Sept. 10 provincial election.
NDP leader Wab Kinew said in a press release July 18 that Manitoba has lost two-thirds of its active mines since Brian Pallister became premier in 2016 and that Statistics Canada says there are 500 fewer natural resources workers in the province than there were in 2017.
“The Pallister government has stood idly by while northern communities struggle to stay afloat in the face of multiple mining closures,” said Kinew. “At a time when workers and their families need protection, how does the Pallister government respond? By calling it ‘business as usual.’”
Documents obtained by the NDP through freedom of information requests show that there were nine “active” mines in Manitoba on April 9, 2016, including 777 Mine in Flin Flon, Birchtree Mine and T-1,T-3 and 1-D mines in Thompson (the latter three counting as one mine), Lalor Mine and Reed Mine in Snow Lake, and Tanco Mine in Lac du Bonnet.
Three others, including Bucko Lake Nickel Mine in Wabowden and Hinge-007 Mine and Rice Lake Gold Mine in Bissett, were on care and maintenance status at that time.