Seen here are the stern faces of determination as members of Unifor's Local 103 man the picket lines at Cochrane after the official lock out of Ontario Northland shops workers and bus mechanics took effect on November 14th.

The times are indeed changing at Ontario Northland and thanks to Queen's Park, not necessarily for the better. An irresponsible "financially feasible" order from the Government of Ontario which began with the unjustified cancellation of Northlander service in 2012 is now doing nothing more than interfering with the original ONTC mandate of developing and fulfilling the type of infrastructure needed to maintain a vibrant Northern Ontario. This standing order has lead to a an Ontario Northland that can no longer only look at providing for the varied needs of the north it serves, but is also forced to fight for it's very own existence. It's that fight for existence that leads to disturbing events like this lock out.

The battle lines are clearly drawn and nobody knows how long this lock out will last. But I sincerely hope that as each of you read this dialogue, someone, somewhere is reading that original Temiskaming & Northern Ontario Railway Act and is hopefully realizing that not only is the building and maintaining of Ontario Northland not just about money, but there also really isn't any room for division among those that make the Ontario Northland run.

Let's hope everyone can get back to work very soon.