Angie Mindus photo Williams Lake loggers Jorden Ilnicki (left) and his father Tracy Ilnicki will be a part of the growing Rally to Vancouver protest Wednesday. The truck rally will see hundreds of loggers in logging trucks headed in a convoy to Vancouver where they hope to bring attention to the needs of the struggling forest industry when Premier John Horgan speaks at the 2019 Union of BC Municipalities.

‘We’re all getting hit hard’: Cariboo loggers to join truck rally and protest job losses

“I’m going to be a part of it and very proud to be” — Tracy Ilnicki

A movement calling on loggers throughout the province to join a Rally to Vancouver truck protest is quickly gaining momentum in the Interior and Northern B.C.

In the Cariboo, the rally is being organized by third generation logger Jorden Ilnicki of Jordco Enterprises in Williams Lake, and will see truckers from throughout the north head in a convoy to Merritt and then Vancouver to bring attention to the dire state of the industry, stopping at many resource-based communities along the route.

“Nobody was taking action here, and I feel we need to be heard and seen,” said Jorden, 25.

Jorden’s father, Tracy Ilnicki, a longtime logging company owner in Williams Lake, said he supports his son’s efforts 100 per cent to unite the industry and bring awareness to the very real struggles everyone is facing right now with the many mill curtailments and closures.

As it stands now, truckers from Prince George will be leaving home at 2 a.m. Wednesday, stopping in Quesnel to meet more truckers, and then on to the Husky Station in Williams Lake along Highway 97 at about 5 a.m., where they will gather, then head out for Merritt to meet many more truckers there, and Rally to Vancouver provincial organizer Howard McKimmon.

From Merritt, the truck rally will continue its convoy to the Lower Mainland, growing again at Hope before heading into Vancouver with a police escort to the Union of BC Municipalities convention, where the group hopes to grab the attention of Premier John Horgan.

“I’m going to be a part of it and I’m very proud to be,” said Tracy. “Whatever we have to do to get our voices out.”

Tracy, whose many pieces of logging equipment have been sitting idle for months, believes the logging industry is not being treated fairly.

“It’s not good,” he said, noting Williams Lake contractors have only worked a month since February. “It’s pretty disheartening that no one else is stepping up to help us. We’ve got nothing.”

Between Tracy’s company, Jatco Timber, and his son’s, they employ a crew of about 25 and are feeling completely helpless that they don’t have work for them.

Read More: B.C. government seeks advice on reviving Interior forest industry

He was forced to lay off his crew, who then had to go through the waiting period to collect employment insurance. Some are hopeful to return to work, others, he said, have moved away, tired of the situation.

“We’re all getting hit hard by it — it’s got to end soon or it’s going to end this town. It’s affecting the whole community.”

Tracy said anywhere from 20 to 50 truckers are expected to come out of Williams Lake to join the provincial convey, where there could be hundreds more.

“There’s no way to tell [how many] until the time comes,” he said. “But I think it’s going to look pretty impressive when we pull out of town.”

Jorden is encouraging as many as possible to join in the rally.

“Logging trucks, pickups, anyone and everyone are welcome and needed,” Jorden said.

“Please spread the word, our communities need this.”

Just Posted

Young woman from Cariboo Chilcotin victim of highway fatality near Cache Creek

Police said the 23-year-old driver crossed the centre line on Highway 1 near Juniper Beach

LIVE STORY: Mission-Matsqui-Fraser Canyon candidates square off at forum

Join the Journal as we feature live coverage of the Oct. 16 forum at the Ashcroft HUB

“It’s much more personal, much more vicious. There’s a willingness to go low and be dirty.”

Federal Green Party leader Elizabeth May reflects on an election campaign like no other she’s known

Enjoy a hot meal and help support Sea Cadets on Oct. 17

Interior Savings staff will be serving up a by-donation meal at the Legion on Thursday

Historic 19th century Ashcroft church gets very modern addition

St. Alban’s Church, built in 1891, now boasts a solar array that will meet its electricity needs

ELECTION 2019: It’s so close, it could come down to who turns out to vote

Black Press Media’s polling analyst on the origins of predictive seat modelling in Canada

Jack’s Devils beat Quinn’s Canucks 1-0 in NHL brother battle

New Jersey youngster scores first career goal against Vancouver

Two charged after owner’s wild ride through Kamloops in his stolen truck

Crystal Rae Dorrington, 37, and Derrick Ronald Pearson, 32, facing multiple charges

Judge orders credit union’s bank records for Kelowna social worker facing theft allegations

The man is accused of negligence, breach of contract, fraud and a conspiracy with Interior Savings

Leaders pour it on with rallies, boosts for candidates as campaign reaches peak

The federal election campaign has reached a crescendo

Allegations of racism lead to ministry investigation at Vancouver private school

St. George’s School was contacted over what the school describes as ‘deeply offensive behaviour online’

Not a political question: Thunberg calls for climate action in Alberta

Edmonton police estimated the size of the crowd at about 4,000

Zantac, the over-the-counter heartburn drug, pulled in Canada, U.S.

Health Canada also investigates possible carcinogen in some ranitidine drugs

B.C. public safety minister says cannabis edibles not in stores til January

Mike Farnworth says he wants regional issues considered when it comes to licensing

Most Read