Excerpt from the Official Report of


November 18, 2014

Funding for worker's families participating in coroner's inquest into mill explosion

S. Simpson: Last month the families of Carl Charlie, Alan Little, Robert Luggi Jr. and Glen Roche — the four men killed in the explosions at the Babine and Lakeland mills — wrote the Premier seeking help for funding independent counsel for the upcoming coroner’s inquest. This is an inquest where we can expect all other parties to have legal counsel, but the real victims — the families — will be on their own. They are asking for that to change.

The Premier didn’t have the decency to respond to the families’ letter herself or to have her Justice Minister reply. Instead, she ordered the chief coroner to answer.

To the Justice Minister, does she think it’s appropriate for the Premier’s office to direct the coroner to respond, denying the families’ request?


S. Simpson: None of the minister’s rhetoric answers the question about why the Premier essentially denied support for independent counsel for these families in this terrible time.

WorkSafe’s inaction allowed the unsafe dust accumulation to occur unchecked in the two mills. Government incompetence ensured that no one involved in these tragedies will face the justice system. Further, the B.C. Liberals have denied the calls for a public inquiry.

Now the government won’t support the families by helping them obtain independent counsel for the coroner’s inquest. Is this what the Premier meant when she told families that she would have their back?

To the Justice Minister, why are she and the B.C. Liberals treating these grieving families with such disrespect?


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