Resolution comes, but still not easy

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Recent days in Pictou County have been difficult and pressure-filled for many. Seeing resolution reached on a couple of issues – a difficult trial and labour action at our schools – without dispelling all the troubles, brings some relief.

The case of a missing Amber Kirwan, that began more than two years ago and intensified when her remains were found, reached some closure for those involved with a guilty verdict Tuesday against Christopher Falconer, the man arrested.

This was an extremely emotional and difficult case from the beginning, tragic and absolutely lacking in sense.

The trial presented itself as no less difficult. Testimony was hard to listen to, given the nature of the crime. It was also complex. We have to thank the jury for what had to be a hard job, sifting through mounds of evidence and reaching a conclusion.

A verdict, while providing some relief, still comes in the wake of a tragedy that, as Crown attorney Bill Gorman suggested, leaves behind grief the family and many others will never get over.

In a much different set of circumstances, workers from our local schools who were walking a picket line Tuesday will be back on the job today. The union and school board agreed to continue talks with a mediator.

The level of acrimony was high on both sides, as is often the case in contract disputes. Rather than a strictly monetary issue, employees said they were concerned about job security and contracting out. Language in the contract as offered didn’t satisfy their concerns.

From the board’s side – and the public understands this – they are severely restricted in funding and have to get the job done, and children educated, with a limit to funds. The public never got a clear picture of the standoff.

Consider the kind of pandemonium that ensued when these workers weren’t on the job and it becomes easier to appreciate their value.

Let’s have both sides be honest about the language in the deal and realistic about the money available.

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