The President and CEO of the Northern Policy Institute says it’s a mistake for northern communities to hope that Amazon is going to locate its next headquarters in the north or that some northern community is going to be home to the next Silicon Valley.

Charles Cirtwill also says we spend too much time focusing on the long-term, well-paying jobs the Ring of Fire will create.

He says the Ring of Fire jobs will come, but they are still in the distant future.

Cirtwill says when it comes to jobs, the success stories are the communities that focus on their existing jobs.

Cirtwill, who was part of the State of the North conference NPI hosted in North Bay, says there are many good jobs to be had in the north.

He says transportation and warehousing are existing good-paying jobs that allow people to raise a family and buy a home.

The same holds true for jobs in the retail sector.

He says policy makers often ignore jobs in these sectors but Cirtwill stresses the community those jobs exist in values them a great deal.

Cirtwill says the people employed by those various sectors pump money back into the economy and he told Moose News that also holds true of people employed in the fast-food industry.

“It’s frustrating when I hear people make fun of the Mc Jobs,” Cirtwill said.

“The fact is these are good-paying jobs.  They teach you important skills like how to behave in a workplace.  They also create economic opportunities for people who have low or no skills.”

Cirtwill adds after a time these people leave their job and head for other work with skills they picked up in the former job.