A University of Northern British Columbia graduate student is looking to speak with currently or recently employed forest sector workers, their families and community members in Quesnel as part of her research on changes in forestry communities.
Megan Gordon, who completed a public administration degree at the University of Ottawa and is now working on her masters thesis in natural resource and environmental studies at UNBC in Prince George, said the study will examine ways to support people and communities when change takes place in the resource sector.
She said learning about experiences and perspectives from local, Quesnel residents through phone or virtual interviews will help explore how change is taking place.
In particular, Gordon said she’s interested in talking about impacts caused by the changes in the forest sector before COVID-19, ideas about supports for those facing impacts and people’s priorities and values regarding work and the forest sector.
She noted research participants must be 19 years of age or older, live or work in Quesnel and fall into one of the following categories:
• employee of a forest products company in a technical or administrative role
• employee of a logging company in a technical or administrative role
• former forest sector employee impacted by layoffs in the last two years
• former forest sector employee who has recently taken up early retirement
• immediate family member of a forestry worker who is currently employed, has recently been laid off, or has retired early as a result of changes in the forest sector
• business owner or employee
• service provider
• local government employee
• non-profit employee
• other local resident with relevant knowledge/expertise
“Part of it is to write a thesis for my master’s degree but I’m also hoping, once I have the findings, to help me put together some kind of recommendations for decision makers at mostly the provincial and federal government level,” Gordon said.
“Through this I will be developing policy recommendations based on what people share with me.”
As a student, she said she thinks it’s important to lend a voice to folks who are experiencing changes and to place a magnifying glass on things that are happening in rural and northern areas in the forest sector.
Anyone interested can contact Gordon before July 15 by e-mail at email@example.com or by phone at 613-214-9651.