The All-Islands Protocol Table sent BC Ferries a letter asking for additional summer sailings.
BC Ferries received the letter on June 10 and are discussing the request with the province, a spokesperson for the ferries stated in an email on June 23.
The Council of the Haida Nation, village councils, municipalities and regional districts on Haida Gwaii supported the letter.
They asked for one additional weekly sailing between Prince Rupert and Haida Gwaii until Sept. 30. If successful, this would mean six scheduled trips per week during peak season, from July 1 to Sept. 5, and five from now until June 30 and from Sept. 6 to 30.
They have also requested an increase of two weekly sailings between Alliford Bay and Skidegate between now and Sept. 30.
The letter stated that the additional sailings would accommodate increased demand and offset service reductions that have occurred the past few years due to COVID-19, engine failure, weather and staffing.
BC Ferries has faced staffing shortages leading to cancelled sailings going to Haida Gwaii and other places across B.C. As of June 20, they suspended their vaccine policy and are in the process of reaching out to 150 employees on leave without pay to check on their intention to return.
Kaitlyn Bailey | Local Journalism Initiative Reporter
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