Enforcement operation near Lake Cowichan
Since early June 2022, the BC RCMP, through the Community-Industry Response Group (C-IRG) and Division Liaison Team (DLT), have been involved in ongoing discussions with the impacted First Nations communities – Ditidaht, Huu-ay-aht and Pacheedaht – regarding their concerns over a protest camp that has been placed across Haddon Main and Carrmanah Mainline Forest Service Roads near Lake Cowichan. This same location had been previously occupied by a blockade, abandoned and then was reoccupied in June 2022. The protest group is opposing the forestry operations in the Fairy Creek Watershed area.
On June 23, 2022, the Indigenous leaders from the three Nations provided a final and formal request to the protesters to immediately dismantle their camp. According to their issued statement, the leaders had made several unsuccessful but peaceful attempts over the past several months to have the group vacate the area and allow the lawful forest operations to resume.
We have heard the concerns of the impacted First Nations leaders and the RCMP are working with all the stakeholders to determine a peaceful resolution, says Chief Superintendent John Brewer, Gold Commander of the C-IRG.
Interfering with the lawful use and enjoyment of property is a criminal offence and impeding access to the forestry roads is a clear violation of the court-ordered injunction granted to Teal-Cedar Products Ltd.
The RCMP has maintained a police presence in the area and in the corridor, with regular patrols to ensure that the forestry roads remain unobstructed and accessible. Contemnors have been given ample opportunity to leave the area by the Indigenous leaders from the territory, but have refused.
In our commitment to enforcing the law and civil injunction, the RCMP has deployed resources to the area as of today, June 29, 2022. Access to the area near Haddon Main and Carrmanah Mainline Forest Service Roads will be limited only for the period of time required by police to clear the road of obstructions and arrest anyone in violation of the injunction.
Any updates will be posted in the Lake Cowichan RCMP Detachment website as and when available. Contact details for media inquiries and requests are provided below.Released by:
BC RCMP Communication Services