Supporter’s Letter

Here’s an email that Suits and Boots supporter Tim Cameron of Drayton Valley, Alberta, shared on Monday, November 12th, with Senator Paula Simons, following up on our Suits and Boots email of last week.

This is an amazing email, which I was copied on, and captures the essence of what our #KillBillC69 campaign is all about. Tim has given me permission to share it with you.

Read this, and you’ll see why I wanted to share this:

“Good Evening Senator,

“I’m a proud 43-year-old father to three amazing sons, and the husband to a hard working, diligent, inspirational woman I am so honored to call my wife.  Our family unit started 20 years ago with the birth of our oldest son, and stayed together through our next two sons.  That changes tomorrow but I’ll get to that in a moment.  Our little family happily worked together when my career had me busy 350 days a year.  We dug deep and found ways to cut back expenditures in 2015 when the bottom of the price of oil came and there was no work to be had in Alberta.  Thank goodness we saved for downturns.  We’ll continue to work together, but we’ve been presented with a challenge unlike any we’ve ever faced.

“The differential price of oil slowed industry activity in West Central Alberta in August and September, and all but stopped it dead in its tracks in October.  I work in the civil construction/environmental side of the industry, and I’ve done something I’ve never had to do before (I’m stubbornly proud and have always found a way to stand on my own two feet), when I asked family and friends for help.  Any contact, any lead, any rumor about work had to be pursued with intensity as for the first time since I’ve left college 22 years ago, I had no contacts with available employment.  I’m an individual who wholeheartedly believes in giving an honest days work for an honest days pay.  That fact combined with several others has always ensured I not only had great quality employment, but typically standing offers to work for others.  Those days are now over.

“Please know that I’m not a victim.  That being said it’s very difficult to want to work and contribute while I see our governments doing little to rectify this situation that they had direct involvement in creating, in a timely fashion as their attention seem to be dominated by feel-good measures.  These efforts seem to be about others as long as they aren’t the hundreds of thousands of people like me in an industry that’s been demonized by very well organized and funded external forces.

“Starting tomorrow, November 13th, my oldest sons 20th birthday, I’m traveling away from home to North Dakota for the first time in my working career in an effort to find employment.  The infrequent work over the past couple years have strained our savings, and I can’t sit and wait to see what might happen in Q1, Q2 or Q4 of 2019 as some are musing.  Every contact I have spoken to is either unsure of what might happen in January, or are saying that they’ll now wait to see what next year’s elections might bring us.  What they are saying is that they’ve taken capital and are using it elsewhere as the political environment is to unstable to guess what might happen next.  This is what I mean by “timely.”  We’ve willingly walked down this road and are mired in the never ending modification to consultation, review and pontification process.  The effect is now that those few guys that were able to hang on are now going elsewhere.  I’m the last one of three close, very capable, quality friends who have left the province to find work elsewhere.

“I want to be with my family.  I want to be an active dad to my kids, and be involved in their lives daily.  We make an effort to sit together for supper every evening with no devices so we can interact with each other, and I don’t want to miss anymore that I have to………and that’s where your involvement is desperately requested.  I’m asking with every ounce of sincerity I can provide, that you vote against bill C69.  We’re proud of the industry that provides for our families.  We’re proud of the world class standards we achieve, and I would encourage you to see for yourself what we do (I’m offering an unofficial tour to you at my cost to see the reality of the conventional oil and gas industry in West Central Alberta).  What you may see and hear from those with arms length involvement is that the bill is a positive for the industry and for Canadians, but I can assure you that a completely other version exists from the silent masses who have their “feet on the ground” within it.

“We aren’t perfect individuals and we know there is no perfection to be had for any parties involved in the situation, but we deserve better.  Better from our federal government, better from our provincial government, and better from those voices who have remained silent that have any connection to the industry.

“I’d truly appreciate any questions, thoughts or concerns you might have about what I do, so you’re able to better understand the impact of bill C69 on my family as well as what it means to the people of this industry.  As a very brief overview, I’m involved in planning, scouting, application (including environmental overview), First Nations consultation, and construction of upstream oil and gas locations.

“Sincerely,

Tim Cameron

Drayton Valley”