Across the political spectrum, leaders were offering sympathy and support for the people of Wabush in the wake of news that the Scully Mine in Labrador West wil be mothballed.
Natural Resources Minister Derrick Dalley said very clearly, as far as he’s concerned, the mine has been idled, but it isn’t closed forever.
“It’s an idle. It’s not a closure,” he said. “The concerns, obviously today, are for the people of Wabush.”
Dalley will be travelling to Labrador West along with Premier Tom Marshall to meet with residents and talk about the situation.
He indicated there’s more to the story, and more information to come out about the situation, but he said that before he does any talking in the media, he wants to sit down and speak to residents in the area.
“To be fair to the people of Wabush, particularly the steelworkers’ union and the town, we’re going in there tomorrow to have conversations with them around a number of issues, and I’d prefer to have that with them before you write it out today,” Dalley told The Telegram Wednesday.
“Talk to me tomorrow after I’ve had a chance to meet with everybody.”
Liberal Leader Dwight Ball also said that as far as he’s concerned, the story isn’t over for the Wabush mine.
“The thing is that there’s still a key asset in Lab West with Wabush Mines right now. We still have ore in the ground. We still have a very skilled workforce,” he said. “So we’re not giving up there. We’re still optimistic that something can happen positive for Wabush mines.”
Ball said he was surprised by the abruptness of the announcement.
So was New Democrat Leader Lorraine Michael. She said she’s not sure what exactly the government’s role should be in the fallout of the mine being idled, but it needs to listen to residents of the area.
“I think the role for government is to sit with the leadership — the union and municipal leaders — and try to work out to see what the role in this particular situation should be,” she said. “I think they all have to sit together to figure out in this context what that might be.”