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NEWS: Rally opposes Harper’s closure of Kitsilano Coast Guard station

Photo by CTV.

Photo by CTV.

CTV reports on a “standing-room only rally” yesterday opposing the Harper government’s announced closure of the Kitsilano Coast Guard station. “Local politicians were present at the rally from every party except the federal Conservatives, voicing similar opinions. B.C. NDP Leader Adrian Dix said it’s not too late for the federal government to change their mind. ‘If the Prime Minister decides to listen, then I’ll be the first to praise him’, said Dix. ‘Sometimes people get things wrong.'”

Last September, the Council of Canadians expressed solidarity with B.C. Federation of Labour president Jim Sinclair and about a dozen others who had occupied the lounge of the station for 24 hours to oppose the Harper government’s planned closure of the base.

At that time, the Vancouver Sun reported, “A confidential report warns of the risks of closing the Kitsilano coast guard base. The report, by Joint Rescue Coordination Centre, which is run by the Canadian Coast Guard and Department of National Defence, said there are two high-risk possibilities that could stem from the Kits base closure: longer response times from the Sea Island base (17 nautical miles and 35 minutes away); and potential overuse of the replacement inshore rescue boat (IRB), an open zodiac-style vessel that will be used after the Kits base is closed.”

Today’s news report notes, “The base’s duties are to be replaced in the spring by a temporary rescue boat stationed at Stanley Park from May to September, SAR staff from the Richmond-based hovercraft operation and additional volunteers.”

The CTV article is at http://bc.ctvnews.ca/rally-pleads-for-ottawa-to-save-kits-coast-guard-1.1121553. The campaign blog can be read at http://canadians.org/blog/?p=16597.