The Canadian Union of Public Employees is offering its support and solidarity with the people of Fort McMurray as their community is threatened by wildfire. Over 80,000 residents of the northern Alberta city have been forced to evacuate, with many homes and businesses already lost.

July 2012 Mackenzie County Fires Photo Credit: Government of Alberta

“The thoughts of all our members are with our CUPE sisters and brothers, and all the people of Fort McMurray as they deal with this devastating wildfire,” said Mark Hancock, national president of CUPE. “Please be safe, and know you have the support of 635,000 CUPE members in this difficult time.”

CUPE represents over 35,000 members in Alberta, including several locals in and around Fort McMurray. CUPE staff in the Fort McMurray area office have evacuated. CUPE is urging all of its members in the area to adhere to the evacuation order.

Updates on the situation, and information for people affected by the wildfires and evacuation are available at

“We want to thank all of the emergency personnel helping fight the wildfire and coordinating the evacuation. Thanks to your efforts there have so far been no loss of life or serious injuries. We hope that stays true until this crisis is over,” said Charles Fleury, national secretary-treasurer of CUPE.

CUPE members in neighbouring communities wishing to volunteer to aid evacuees can apply with the Wood Buffalo Emergency Services.