New Prosperity Mine supporter Len Doucette says the Nov. 26 meeting held by mine opponents Friends of Fish Lake and Fish Lake Alliance also had many mine supporters attend the event.
Doucette, who has a Facebook group to offer information and a forum for those who would like to see Taseko’s Chilcotin mine project proceed, adds 35 to 40 of those members turned out to the meeting, plus perhaps a half-dozen other supporters.
The remaining 100 or so people who attended were not all from the South Cariboo, he notes.
“There were actually quite a few people from Williams Lake down there.”
However, despite having a few dozen from Doucette’s pro-New Prosperity group at the meeting, no hands were raised during the question period by anyone who identified themselves as a mine supporter.
Doucette explains that was planned ahead.
“Quite often when I have been to presentations that [Taseko Mines Ltd.] has made, there are the Friends of Fish Lake or those alliances over there, and I think it’s rude when they just jump up and start barking out some stuff. So, I told the people who were with me, ‘let’s just go there and listen to see what they have to say’.
“[The plan] was to go back and regroup and then come back with our statements.”
One thing that left him “really disappointed” and “a little upset,” Doucette adds, was when his group was asked not to wear their white hats, with logos identifying them as mine supporters, inside the church.
“They said ‘this is a Christian church and hats just aren’t allowed’… but then we walked into the building and there are a bunch of [mine opponents] wearing caps. I thought that was kind of a double standard.”
He holds nothing against the Friends of Fish Lake and the Fish Lake Alliance, Doucette says, but there is a lot more information and background details that weren’t presented.
“They are a good organization and those are the watchdogs we need for new mining projects in the province; I’m the first one to admit that. I just wish they would tell all of the story and not just a part of it.”
Anyone who wants to learn more about Taseko’s plan for the protection of Fish Lake or other aspects can find details online at www.ceaa.gc.ca, e-mail Doucette with their questions to email@example.com, or visit the Say Yes to the Taseko Prosperity Mine Project Facebook group page.