Road blockade in Tachie: looking for a solution

In an effort to protect their way of life, community members from Tachie decided that they had enough.

  • Wed Jun 8th, 2016 1:00pm
  • News

Left: From Tachie

Barbara Latkowski

Caledonia Courier

In an effort to protect their way of life, community members from Tachie decided that they had enough.

It was time to do something and to be heard.

And in an effort to do so, a road blockade was set up on May 31 on Leo Creek Forest Service Road which is a heavily driven road that services logging trucks and other industry vehicles.

Teddy Johnnie from Tachie, helped set up the blockade.

“There’s lots of money going out and not enough going back into our Reserve,” Johnnie said. “We just want to protect what we have and what’s ours.”

Gary West, also from Tachie, couldn’t agree more.

“There’s too much logging and too much destruction up here. We are not against industry, we just want our say,” West said.

According to Johnnie, the blockade will keep going until an agreement is made between industry, forestry and Chief and Council from Tachie.

Alex Joseph recalls this very same situation taking place two years ago.

“We were here for the same reasons but nothing came out of it. So now we are back, in the same place with the same issues,” Joseph said.

Chief Justa Monk was prepared to have an emergency chief meeting along with the Ministry of Forestry on June 3 in an effort to look at the issues seriously and come up with a viable agreement.

“We need to do something. We need to create more jobs for the people of Tachie,” Monk said.

Out of 17,070 band members, 600 – 800 members live on the reserve. About 95 per cent are unemployed and 65 per cent are under the age of 25.

Elder, Philip Felix wants to see change.

“We are Kehoh Holders, we are trappers and hunters. We just want to protect our land. We are here for our children and grandchildren. We need to protect them.”