Defence union turns up heat on MP Strahl

An effort to stop the closure of the Canadian Forces’ ASU in Chilliwack is being mounted by the Union of National Defence Employees.

A last-ditch effort to stop the closure of the Canadian Forces’ Area Supply Unit in Chilliwack is being mounted by the Union of National Defence Employees.

And Chilliwack-Fraser Canyon MP Mark Strahl is being “targeted specifically” by the union to reverse the decision, Mark Miller, UNDE vice-president in B.C., told The Progress last week.

Strahl should be fighting to keep the ASU open, he said, “instead of kowtowing to the various doctrines of the prime minister.”

“I’m targeting him specifically (because) he’s got the only (ASU) where there’s an actual closure taking place,” he said.

Strahl was not available to comment on the political heat the union is mounting through the newspaper advertising campaign.

When news of the closure broke in April, Strahl said the loss of jobs was “not easy to pass along” to employees, but the Conservative government had to “balance military needs” as Canadian troops came home from Afghanistan with saving taxpayers’ dollars.

But the union is saying the loss of 18 jobs at the ASU will have a direct impact on the community, and have a “huge impact” on local charities.

“You remove those salaries, and the impact on their families spills over to the whole community,” Miller said.

The Progress has learned the annual wages lost will total about $930,000.

The ASU building itself and the property it sits on will be retained by the military for use by reserve units from New Westminster, by military police and by members of the 39 Combat Engineers Regiment, currently located in the “1041 building” nearby.

With the move of the 39 CER, the 1041 building will be turned over as military surplus to the Canada Lands Company, which redeveloped most of the former CFB Chilliwack for residential use.

The 1041 building was renovated just this year, but at what cost was not immediately available.

The University of the Fraser Valley may be interested in acquiring the property, located directly behind its Trades & Technology Centre in the Canada Education Park.

The RCMP’s Pacific Region Training Centre, also located in the education park, may be interested in the property as well, but officials there were also unavailable for comment.

The ASU is slated for closure in fiscal 2013/14.

rfreeman@theprogress.com

twitter.com/paperboy2

Just Posted

More roundabouts slated to be built in Chilliwack

Art or trees in roundabouts as visual obstructions makes them safer, according to safety experts

‘Devastated’ mom says 14-year-old Surrey overdose victim loved being with friends

Video of Heaven Donnelly’s overdose was circulating on Instagram, according to mother

Raymond Lee Caissie gets life in prison for murdering Surrey teen in 2014

Judge numbers Caissie among ‘violent merciless men without a conscience’

Rezoning approved by Chilliwack council for Five Corners redevelopment

Speakers want heritage aspects incorporated into new DT neighbourhood design

Column: Chilliwack Chiefs own rivalry with Coquitlam Express

Is it even a rivalry if one team dominates another like the Chiefs have owned the Express?

VIDEO: ‘Lyle the singing pig’ searching for home

SPCA say the pig is ‘not opera-ready’

Dodgers punch ticket to World Series

This will be the first time the Los Angles Dodgers have made it to the World Series since 1988.

Surf group winning the war on plastic bags

The Tofino Co-op will no longer provide plastic bags, following in the footsteps of the Ucluelet location that already made the change earlier this year.

All three victims identified in Fernie arena ammonia leak

Wayne Hornquist and Lloyd Smith were from Fernie and Jason Podloski from Turner Valley, Alta

VIDEO: Body discovered at scene of dumpster fire behind Langley City mall

Area behind furniture store taped off after firefighters find deceased woman while battling blaze

5 to start your day

Sentencing in murder of Surrey teen expected, Maple Ridge mayor to step away from politics and more

B.C. woman plagued by bedbugs on airplane not surprising, says expert

Heather Szilagyi was on a British Airways flight when she noticed bedbugs crawling out of the seat

4 B.C. prisons install body scanners to combat drug smuggling

The scanners are aimed to combat the smuggling of contraband including weapons and drugs

Outspoken Mountie assigned to admin duties for refusing to shave goatee

The 15-year veteran of the force said he believes the RCMP is targeting him

Most Read