Herring decision frustrates fishers

  • Mar. 12, 2014 7:00 a.m.

There’s more heat on DFO this week, after the public learned the federal minister disregarded scientific recommendations and re-opened the herring fishery in three areas, including Haida Gwaii.Fisheries minister Gail Shea’s decision was brought to light during a court injunction, which the Nuu-chah-nulth Nations won, preventing a commercial herring fishery in their traditional waters during 2014.As a result of this information, the United Fisherman and Allied Workers Union and Unifor are recommending that herring fisherman not drop nets in the other two disputed areas: Haida Gwaii and the Central Coast.”Fisherman are totally frustrated with the federal decision making around fisheries – as are First Nations; we are all being used and abused with opaque DFO decision making,” said a UFAWU-Unifor press release.Skeena-Bulkley Valley MP Nathan Cullen said Minister Shea needs to do some damage control or risk having a crisis on her hands.”The first thing the minister needs to do is step in and clear the air, and meet with the people who rely on this fishery for their livelihood…Federal flip-flops on the issue are sending mixed messages to fishers, damaging relationships, and potentially damaging this sensitive fishery,” he said.

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