My journey to the north

Last week, I stood on the vehicle deck of a ferry, gazing over the grey-blue waters of Tsawwassen, thinking about the long drive ahead of me to Burns Lake, to work as writer and editor for the Lakes District News and Houston Today.

Cut to the next scene: I’m stuck in the rain with a busted windshield wiper, driver’s side. And it’s raining in Vancouver. It’s a reminder of the contingency of our day-to-day lives: a lot can turn on the (broken) rod of a windshield wiper’s “linkage assembly.”

About me: For the past several years I’ve lived and worked in Montreal as a freelance writer and editor. Most of the time I worked as a fact-checker for The Canadian Encyclopedia. I also wrote for a little-known UN agency, the Universal Postal Union, which deals entirely with the global postal sector. Recently, I also started writing for the website of the University of Bern, Switzerland.

But my heart has always been in community journalism. I got my start with CKUT, the radio station at McGill University. I focused my writing and radio work on social justice issues like immigrant labour, and launched a podcast called Migrant Voices with a grassroots organization fighting for the rights of workers, Montreal’s Immigrant Workers’ Centre.

I decided to commit myself to journalism because I believe we need people at the front lines documenting events, and through a critical lens — reporting about issues that matter to a community, from the grassroots.

I want to acknowledge that I’ll be reporting from unceded Indigenous land, and that there is a long history of settlers like me writing about Indigenous peoples in ways that create distortions or misrepresentations. Anne Helen Petersen, Buzzfeed’s senior culture writer and western correspondent, approached this topic in a recent TinyLetter, arguing for white writers to understand the legacy of colonialism and their place in it — and for the empowerment of more Indigenous journalists.

There is clearly a lot of work towards repair and healing to be done, by people from all walks of life. I think journalism has an important role to play and I sincerely hope to contribute in the communities of Burns Lake and Houston.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Trap shooting for Thursdays back at Tweedsmuir Park Rod and Gun Club

Tweedsmuir Park Rod and Gun Club is back with their summer offerings.… Continue reading

The violence and abuse hiding in plain sight

Usually when a business or an organization has a big influx of… Continue reading

Shop local on July 25 to support Burns Lake businesses

Mark your calendars and say thank you to our community’s backbone

Government and WE Charity breakup won’t affect Burns Lake students

Local students weren’t set to participate in the program, says teacher

The Pines gets a $3,000 funding from Bulkley Valley Credit Union

The Pines nursing home in Burns Lake received a $3,000 funding from… Continue reading

Recent surge in COVID-19 cases not unexpected amid Phase Three of reopening: B.C.’s top doc

Keep circles small, wear masks and be aware of symptoms, Dr. Bonnie Henry says

B.C. NDP changing WorkSafeBC regulations to respond to COVID-19

Employers say reclassifying coronavirus could be ‘ruinous’

Baby raccoon rescued from 10-foot deep drainage pipe on Vancouver Island

‘Its cries were loud, pitiful and heartbreaking,’ Saanich animal control officer says

Statistical flaws led to B.C. wolf cull which didn’t save endangered caribou as estimated

Study finds statistical flaws in an influential 2019 report supporting a wolf cull

Windows broken, racist graffiti left on Okanagan home

Family says nothing like this has happened since they moved to Summerland in 1980s

B.C. man who went by ‘Doctor Ray Gaglardi’ charged with sex assault of teenage boys

The man, 75, is accused of assaulting teenage boys he met through Coquitlam-area churches

B.C.’s potential deficit $12.5 billion as spending spikes, taxes drop

Finance Minister Carole James gives COVID-19 outlook

Canadians torn on scaling back COVID-19 benefits to save money: poll

Of those surveyed, 78 per cent said they were worried about the size of the deficit

‘Trauma equals addiction’: Why some seek solace in illicit drugs

Part 2: Many pushed into addiction by ‘toxic stress,’ says White Rock psychologist

Most Read