An NDP Member of Parliament from Manitoba is asking documentary filmmaker Michael Moore to take up the cause of workers facing the closure of a refinery and smelter in the province.

Niki Ashton, the MP for Churchill, sent Moore a video and letter outlining the situation at the Vale SA smelter and refinery in Thompson, which the company said would close by 2015, meaning the loss of 500 jobs in the community, which is about 750 kilometres north of Winnipeg.

"We're hoping that he can help us share our story and take an interest in what we are trying to do: which is to say that this announcement is unacceptable," Ashton told CBC News. In her letter, Ashton tells Moore that he is well-known for championing "the struggles of working people."

"We are fighting to reverse the plan of devastating job loss and the shipping away of value-added jobs from our area," her letter said.

There was no indication Friday as to whether or not Moore had received Ashton's plea, nor if he would take up her suggestion to "share our story."

Ashton's letter claims the closure decision shows how a foreign-based company's decision can have "devastating" consequences on a local community.

She said Moore, an American, could help explain that to a broader community.

"We want to have the say in how we build our country," she added.