My favourite Christmas Movie is, “It's a Wonderful Life.”
On Monday, Sept. 24, we had a town meeting with representatives from Scotiabank. And the surreal feeling of being in a movie was very real that night. The heartless decision to remove the one and only bank on the entire eastern side of the Great Northern Peninsula, without even so much as a conversation with the stakeholders, was unbelievable. To hear the same sentence repeated over and over again, “I appreciate that comment,” and then state the decision has been made and will NOT be reversed, was ludicrous.
That meeting reminded me of my all-time favourite movie. Selfish, self-centred Mr. Potter striving desperately to take over and control the one thing out of his control; a local savings and loan mom-and-pop operation that refused to die or surrender to Mr. Potter. And although Mr. Potter almost succeeded in his goal, in the end he was thwarted by a much higher power.
While the movie is fictional the scenario is very real.
The Mr. Potter in this play is Scotiabank, who have forgotten the people of the eastern side of the Great Northern Peninsula.
The corporate powers are only concerned with the “variables” and did not look up from their computer screens and numbers to see the real value of their business: the people.
At the end of the day, while the bank may pull out of the eastern side of the Great Northern Peninsula, the communities will not collapse. Nor will we go quietly into the night or simply give up. You see, while Scotiabank has decided the “variables” on the eastern side of the Great Northern Peninsula aren't quite their cup of tea, my message to them is pretty simple. Mr. Potter, aka Scotiabank, you may have spoken but I am sure the mighty fine people of the eastern side of the Great Northern Peninsula have just begun to speak.