Tag Archives: Canadian Independent Fish Harvesters Federation

‘Playing with fire’: Fishing’s cruel seas and even crueler economics

On Feb. 12, 2013, an unseasonably warm evening, five young fishermen departed the West Head wharf on Cape Sable Island, N.S. aboard the Miss Ally, a 12-metre Cape Islander. The men, spanning in age from 21 to 33 — three of them fathers of young children—were headed out in pursuit of halibut, a valuable winter catch. On deck that night were Billy Jack Hatfield, a recently-engaged 33-year-old; Cole Nickerson, 28, a burly and strong former junior hockey player; Joel Hopkins, a 27-year-old father of two who absolutely loved the thrill of fishing; and Tyson Townsend, 25, a gifted athlete with a seven-month-old daughter. At the wheel, piloting the boat into darkness, was Katlin Nickerson, Miss Ally’s 21-year-old captain and owner. click here to read the story 13:13

FISH-NL: Fisheries and Oceans Minister Dominic LeBlanc missing boat on problems plaguing industry

The Federation of Independent Sea Harvesters of Newfoundland and Labrador (FISH-NL) is outraged with an attack by the federal Minister of Fisheries and Oceans on the province’s inshore harvesters. “Dominic LeBlanc has said straight out he wants to devalue fishing licences when the only thing most inshore harvesters have to retire on is the sale of their license,” says Ryan Cleary, President of FISH-NL. “It’s not like there’s an FFAW pension plan.” “LeBlanc also appears out to end the ability of inshore harvesters to pass on licences to their children, a tradition that’s gone on for hundreds of years and critical to the future or the inshore fishery.” click here to read the press release 13:10

Dominic LeBlanc pledges to ‘enshrine the owner-operator and fleet separation law’

Federal Fisheries Minister Dominic LeBlanc told the Canadian Independent Fish Harvesters’ Federation he plans to make amendments to the Fisheries Act that will “enshrine the owner-operator and fleet separation law.” “This would mean that the minister would be able to create regulation under law to prohibit a fisherman from using a licence to enter a controlling agreement or other arrangements that are contrary to social and economic objectives that are beyond the spirit and intent of the owner-operator and fleet separation policies,” LeBlanc said. LeBlanc made the announcement during his keynote address at the annual Canadian Independent Fish Harvesters’ Federation meeting held in Chester, N.S., Tuesday. click here to read the story 08:21

Creation of a new marine protection area off British Columbia upsets fishing industry

Canada’s largest commercial fishermen’s union says the creation of a new marine protection area off British Columbia’s north coast will result in lost jobs and higher prices for seafood. The Canadian Independent Fish Harvesters’ Federation says the protection area goes too far in banning all fishing in several regions between Vancouver Island and the archipelago of Haida Gwaii. Jim McIsaac, the group’s Pacific vice-president, says the union supports safeguarding the region’s glass sponge reefs but he regrets that the Fisheries Department hasn’t followed the group’s advice after seven years of consultation. The federal government is expected to announce the new protection area on Thursday. Fisheries Minister Dominic LeBlanc says the federal government does not believe preserving the glass-sponge conservation area is an either/or proposition and that it’s possible to do so while balancing the interests of the commercial fishing industry. Read the rest here 16:18

Warning sent to illegal foreign lobster licence buyers

1632_lobster%20licensesA Canadian fishers’ federation is firing a warning shot across the bow of foreign buyers for allegedly trying to illegally buy inshore lobster fishing licences. After an advertisement appeared in two newspapers in southern Nova Scotia, the Canadian Independent Fish Harvesters’ Federation became alarmed foreign investors could be scooping up these licences. A classified ad in the Lobster Bay and Clare Shoppers, newspapers published by Marc Graff, asked lobster fishing boat operators if they were looking to retire. The ad then makes a claim. “We have foreign buyers looking to buy district 33,34, 35 and other lobster fishing areas,” the ad reads. Those are the areas for the inshore lobster fishery in southern Nova Scotia. The ad also lists a telephone number for interested parties. But there was no reply to a voice mail message left on it Tuesday. And while the newspaper publisher did identify the advertiser behind that classified ad Tuesday as Novi Marine Brokers in Yarmouth, the director of operations at that company denied any knowledge of it. “I know nothing about that ad,” Tammy Ward, Novi Marine Brokers’ director of operations, said Tuesday. Read the story here 11:01

Foreign Investors Buying up Nova Scotia Inshore Lobster Fishery?

1632_lobster%20licensesForeign investors may soon be illegally buying up Nova Scotia’s iconic lobster fishery, according to the Canadian Independent Fish Harvesters’ Federation. “The government is moving too slowly to deal with this problem. We need urgent action.” Federation President Christian Brun said. The Federation released a newspaper ad (pictured) from Losterbayshopper.com offering to purchase their lobster licences in Nova Scotia’s most lucrative fishing areas on behalf of foreign buyers.  “This is against Atlantic Canadian policy in the Fisheries; the only person who can own an inshore lobster fishing licence is a Canadian inshore fisherman; someone who lives in a fishing community and goes to work on a fishing boat which he or she owns and operates,” Mr Brun said. “Domestic and international investors are breaking the law and advertising it in newspapers!” Read the story here 14:12

Canadian Independent Fish Harvesters’ Federation – Major shift in fisheries thinking as parties vie for coastal vote

A major political shift in fisheries thinking is taking place amongst Canada’s political parties as they compete for the coastal vote according to the survey results released today by the country’s national fishermen’s organization.  “There is a recognition across the political spectrum that sustainable fisheries are not just about the ecology and economy; they are about the social values Canadians hold dearly” Christian Brun, President of the Canadian Independent Fish Harvesters’ Federation said. “All the parties are saying that who fishes matters, the community they fish out of matters, and how fishery benefits are distributed matters. Furthermore they are saying that our fisheries policies and laws need to reflect and protect these values”, Brun said. Read the rest here 12:42

Canadian Fishermen Ask Federal Candidates Where They Stand on the Fishery

In a survey, distributed yesterday, the  asked candidates in Quebec and Atlantic Canada if they are prepared to put fishery regulations rules into place that restrict the control of fishing licences in Atlantic Canada and Quebec to owner-operators. Candidates in B.C. ridings are being asked whether they support having fishing licenses and quotas held primarily by those who fish and prevent them from becoming a speculative asset. Read the rest here 15:50

“We believe that the privilege to fish should go to the people who fish, not to corporations that end up controlling fishermen.”

The Canadian Independent Fish Harvesters Federation is made up of fishermen’s organizations from six provinces: Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, Quebec and British Columbia. Christian Brun, president of the federation, says the group will work with governments to ensure that fisheries policies support actual fishermen. “Our main concern is to promote the independent, small-business, community based approach to fishing in Canada,” Brun said in a news release. [email protected]  16:28