NORDIK INSTITUTE NEWS RELEASE: Concerned citizens in the Sault join North Eastern Municipalities ONTC divesture fight

Screening of acclaimed film ‘Derailed – The National Dream’

May 25, 2012

COCHRANE – Northern municipalities affected by the Province’s divesture of the ONTC are continuing to escalate the issue.

They do not accept the Province’s unilateral and autocratic approach to the ONTC which represents an integral part of the region’s economy and opportunity to grow into the next age of multi-modal transportation.

The approach is arrogant and places far too much risk on the region as it has no clear plan or desired outcome. At the same time, the issue is rapidly expanding its reach to now include concerned residents as far as Sault Ste. Marie.

On May 30 2012, northern municipalities along with Cochrane mayor and council, and Sault Ste Marie are the Coalition for Algoma Passenger Trains (CAPT) will host the screening of Derailed: The National Dream, produced by documentary film maker Dan Nystedt.

The film first screened on Sunday, March 4,2012 at the Grand Theatre, in Sault Ste. Marie as part of the Shadows of the Mind Film Festival.

De-Railed: The National Dream, is a documentary examining the crumbling state of the Canadian railway system.

Having lost more than 10,000 kilometres of track since 1990, why has Canada allowed its “ribbon-of-rail” to become so tattered?

The screening will take place on the train as it departs Cochrane, Ontario on its way to North Bay.

Media, dignitaries and passengers are invited to join the train ride and screening, or at each stop where passengers will be picked up.

Dignitaries along the way will be picked up as part of the rally planned at North Bay when the train arrives, where will be a press conference addressing the screening and the Provinces divesture plans for the ONTC.

Film-maker Dan Nystedt will join the ride for the screening along with the Cochrane DC Film Office who will be making a documentary and film of the event.

All are welcomed to join us at the front end in Cochrane where the train will depart at 8 a.m.

Or you can be picked up along the way during the many stops along the way.

“I’m excited to be part of a gathering that sees concerned citizens come from as far away as Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario. It shows how integral the ONTC is to all of the North East not just the highway 11 corridor,” stated Mayor Peter Politis.

Mayor Politis went on to say: “Cochrane’s DC film office has exploded onto the film industry scene recently and will make a film of this extraordinary and important event that will continue our efforts to expose our region, our people, our issues, and our great way of life to the world. I invite Minister Bartolucci and Premier McGuinty to join us for the screening or at the rally in North Bay. It will be a great opportunity for the Premier to explain to Northerners why he has decided to go back on his word and personal guarantee during an election campaign back in 2002, where he stated: ‘Therefore I will guarantee the people of Nipissing that my government will not approve or allow the privatization of the ONTC – Dalton McGuinty 2002.'”

Linda Savory-Gordon, a professor at Algoma University and a member of the CAPT group said: “I can’t believe how this government has gone about this process and how they are so quick to divest of something so critical to Northern Ontario as the ONTC, with no plan, and no involvement of northerners.”

Dan Nystedt, maker of the film Derailed: The National Dream states: “I’m excited to join the Cochrane DC Film Office in doing this screening. I’m very proud of the film and the rave reviews it has been receiving. Rail is critical to both limiting our environmental carbon footprint and to our growth and development in Canada – I think everyone will appreciate the credibility the film brings to the issue.”

Media, residents and guests are all invited to join us on May 30 on the train that leaves Cochrane Ontario at 8 a.m. and arrives in North Bay at 1:25 p.m. same day.

We will be organizing group transportation opportunities to return (rentals).

The rally will take place right at the ONR station in North Bay shortly after the train arrives.

For more information on organizational details please contact Alice Mercier at alice.mercier@cochraneontario.com or 705-272-4361 ext 231.

About NORDIK Institute

NORDIK Institute is a community-based research institute at Algoma University.

NORDIK has conducted research on a variety of topics including the social economy, culture and the arts, and socio-economic impact analysis.

NORDIK also works closely with Indigenous communities to respond to their research needs.

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