Nfld. & Labrador

Some help for Igor-struck plant workers

Newfoundland and Labrador's fisheries minister is making a short-term commitment to help some fish plant employees who lost work after Hurricane Igor destroyed a processing plant on the Bonavista Peninsula last September.
The Ocean Choice International shrimp plant in Port Union, pictured here, suffered extensive damage during Hurrican Igor last September. (CBC)

Newfoundland and Labrador's fisheries minister is offering some short-term help to fish plant employees who lost work after Hurricane Igor destroyed the Ocean Choice International plant on the Bonavista Peninsula last September.

Fisheries Minister Clyde Jackman said the provincial government will back a make-work program for about 200 people in the Port Union area.

"It would be for plant workers that would be employed there and that's basically a $10-per-hour program," said Jackman Monday. He expects to meet with Food, Fish and Allied Workers Union representatives and people in Port Union again in April.

OCI said it won't  reopen the facility this summer because the September 21 hurricane damaged the grounds, nearby roads and the adjacent wharf, while the inside processing equipment and technology were destroyed by water.

Company officials said it will cost more than $10 million to get the plant back in working order and it would not be finished this year.

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