Your McMurray Six On/Six Off
1.Off: Fort McMurray is a transient community of fly in, fly out workers and nobody really cares about the community in any real way.
On: The evidence is in: Fort McMurray is home to thousands of people, many of whom have been in the community for decades and while they may “fly in and fly out” on holidays, their feet and hearts are firmly planted right here.
2. Off: Oh yeah? What evidence?
On: All one has to do is look at things like the astounding success of the United Way campaign of 2014, beating their fundraising goal, and the consistent ranking of this community as tops per capita in philanthropy. If that doesn’t say “home” then you might not know what home means.
3. Off: But what about FIFO? What about the camps? This isn’t home to them.
On: FIFO and camp life are part of the region – but even some who start out as FIFO or in camps eventually choose to make Fort McMurray their home because they see the advantages of living in a community that is vibrant, young and full of energy.
4. Off: Ok, some people call Fort McMurray home. But why? Don’t they intend to just take the money and run eventually?
On: There are many who come here on a two year, five year and even 10 year plan. Ask around, because once those people become involved in the community they stop planning how to leave, and start planning how to stay.
5. Off: But why the big deal about this being home and community? Isn’t there a lot of focus on this?
On: It might seem that way, but the truth is that there is still a lot of misinformation about Fort McMurray in the general world. People believe that there are oil sands sites in the downtown core (there are not) and that everyone here lives in a camp for work but their families live elsewhere – and part of dispelling the rumours about Fort McMurray is ensuring it is understood that this place is a community and a home.
6. Off: Okay fine – but this isn’t my community or my home. I am just passing through, here to work and then back to my real home.
On: Thanks for visiting! And thanks for contributing to the Canadian economy and being part of our workforce. All we ask is that if this is not the place you call home that you treat it with the same respect you would expect for your home and community, and remember that the door is always open should you change your mind and consider a relocation. We would love to welcome you to Fort McMurray – and have you call it home, too!