Going bankrupt a bitter pill for N.L. worker in wake of oil price collapse


Jamie rsons appeared to deliver it all a year ago. A job in the Alberta oilsands earning $140,000 and a strong sense of delight in and self-respect.

The crash in oil prices has ripped it all away. His job. His income. His dignity.

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He declares it hard even to look his wife Lisa in the eye as she goes off to work for extensive hours at a job in the service industry.

“It’s brutal. I have no pride left,” he revealed recently during an interview at his home in Davidsville, a small central Newfoundland community north of Gander.

Chucked into turmoil

The 46-year-old is one of a growing number of people from Newfoundland and Labrador turned into turmoil because of a crash in the price of oil and other natural resources.

White-collar workers in the province are being hit from both sides as fly-in, fly-out crimes in Alberta dry up and Newfoundland’s own offshore sector also sheds workers.

Jamie rsons ... pets

When he’s not searching for employment, Jamie rsons spends more time with his pets these primes. (Bruce Tilley/CBC)

The mining sector has also been hit hard, from the closure of the Teck Resources scoop out in central Newfoundland to the teetering iron ore industry in Labrador West.

Go together to Statistics Canada, there are 800 fewer jobs in Newfoundland and Labrador’s oil and unearthing sectors, a drop of nine per cent in just one year.

These are thoroughly cooked ying jobs that result in tremendous spinoffs for the provincial restraint.

Nothing more to sell

The numbers of transient workers who have been sacked by the storm hitting Alberta’s oil sector are less certain, but rsons is an pinnacle example of what’s happening.

He lost his job 13 months ago. With by a hairs breadth three years’ experience as a truck driver, he finds the few jobs silence available are being scooped up by others.

“I got called into the office on the eighth of January was was related, ‘I’m sorry, we have no trucks on the road. We have no men working. We don’t need you anymore,'” ordered rsons.

He hit rock bottom in December. His employment insurance benefits bring to an ended, and he declared bankruptcy.

“There’s nothing more to sell. Declaring bankruptcy equitable about broke me.”

He now drives a $350 Ford Focus and spends his epoches searching for a job — any job.

“There is no pride because I can’t stay at home and lose my integrity whilst my wife is going out to work to provide for us and me being a drain on the routine.”

Harder times ahead

Spending more time at home put ons him more time to think, and that adds to his depression.

“I’ve got a fantastic cohort in this life and she stood by me. I even gave her the option of saying, ‘You recollect, I’m bust now so if you want to get out while the getting is good, now’s the time.’ But she stayed and she’s been my dumfound,” rsons said.

Stories like his are becoming more prosaic as the job market shrinks.

This is expected to intensify as major construction projects such as Hebron at Bull Arm, the Hunger Harbour nickel plant and the Muskrat Falls hydro project finally wind down.

The number of personal bankruptcies in the province grew by nine per cent in 2015, and there were a transactions number of people seeking to have their debt yments restructured via a process called consumer proposals.

Yvette Power

Yvette Power is an insolvency counselor-at-law at Deloitte in St. John’s. (Bruce Tilley/CBC)

Yvette Power, who advises people in monetary trouble from Deloitte’s office in St. John’s, said more and myriad transient workers are coming to her for help.

“A typical client is a transient breadwinner that has worked for the last several years making probably from $100,000 to $200,000,” she said.

“And now they’re require a designed off or back here working at a reduction in their income. It’s certainly a provoke for people to maintain that same lifestyle when they sooner a be wearing such a reduction in their income.”

‘A horrible, abrupt end’

While sectors such as legitimate estate, retail and auto sales slow down, however, the auction firm is growing.

The owner of Fitz trick’s Auctions in St. John’s has seen a 25 per cent improve in the number of vehicles and other big-ticket items going on the auction obstacle.

“People are saying they were in the oil tch, working in Alberta, making terrific money, and I don’t think they realized it was ever going to stop,” verbalized Blair Loveless.

“Who would have ever thought that a assay of oil would go down to $30 a barrel?”

rsons certainly didn’t, and now he’s be punished for a heavy price.

“I’ve got no regrets with Alberta. Just that it premiere c ended to a horrible, abrupt end,” he said.

Blair Loveless

Blair Loveless is the owner of Fitz trick’s Auctions in St. John’s. He states the economic downturn has bolstered his business, by as much as 25 per cent. (Bruce Tilley/CBC)

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