Tag Archives: Ryan Cleary

‘LeBlanc must go.’ FISH-NL demands Prime Minister fire Dominic LeBlanc from cabinet for violating conflict of interest rules

The Federation of Independent Sea Harvesters of Newfoundland and Labrador (FISH-NL) is demanding Prime Minister Justin Trudeau fire MP Dominic LeBlanc from the federal cabinet for breaking conflict of interest rules when he was minister of Fisheries and Oceans. Further, Premier Dwight Ball and the province’s seven Members of Parliament should be unanimous in demanding LeBlanc’s immediate dismissal. “LeBlanc broke conflict of interest rules by awarding a lucrative licence to fish arctic surf clams to a company that was set to be run by his wife’s cousin — a decision that would have seen resource and jobs leave our province,” says Ryan Cleary, President of FISH-NL. “LeBlanc’s conflict of interest as Fisheries and Oceans minister amounts to the highest act of treason against our province and people. Not only should the Prime Minister fire him, but the Premier and all seven MPs need to be loud, clear, and unanimous in saying, ‘LeBlanc must go.’ Anything less would be traitorous to our province.” >click to read<14:05

FISH-NL asks federal Auditor General to investigate sentinel cod fisheries

“Money from the sale of cod caught in the sentinel or test fisheries goes in the pockets of the FFAW-Unifor even though the program is supposedly fully financed directly by Fisheries and Oceans,” says Ryan Cleary, President of FISH-NL. In a letter Thursday to Auditor General Michael Ferguson, Cleary said there doesn’t appear to be any formal audit or reporting process in place to calculate the amount of money raised by the sale of cod caught through the sentinel program, or to determine how the money is spent. Further, even though money from the sale of cod is used to subsidize the sentinel fisheries, the program falls outside Section 10 of the federal Fisheries Act, which seems to be a clear violation of the legislation. >click to read<12:45

Access to justice denied; Labour Board refuses FISH-NL request to live-stream upcoming hearing

“While we’re urging inshore harvesters to attend the hearing in person, the reality is most will not be able to make it,” says Ryan Cleary, President of FISH-NL. “For them, access to justice will be denied as a result of this decision.” Almost 20 months after FISH-NL submitted an application for certification to represent the province’s inshore harvesters — breaking them away from the FFAW-Unifor — and the Labour Relations Board has scheduled an Aug. 20th hearing. Earlier this month, David Goodland, FISH-NL’s lawyer, wrote the Labour Relations Board for permission to live-stream the hearing, and share the recording on FISH-NL’s Facebook page. “The request is made in order to ensure all parties affected by the outcome of the hearing have access to justice and in particular have reasonable access to this hearing,” Goodland wrote, adding if the request isn’t granted the “vast majority” of harvesters won’t be able to observe the hearing. >click to read<14:17

FISH-NL accuses NL NDP leader of applying double standards in labour relations

The Federation of Independent Sea Harvesters of Newfoundland and Labrador (FISH-NL) accuses provincial NDP leader Gerry Rogers of applying double standards in supporting locked out workers in Gander while turning her back on the province’s inshore fish harvesters. “While Gerry Rogers rallied today with workers at Gander’s D-J Composites, who’ve been locked out for 597 days, she’s turned her back on upwards of 3,000 inshore harvesters who’ve been waiting 583 days for the Labour Relations Board to grant them a vote to choose their union,” says Ryan Cleary, President of FISH-NL. >click to read<11:15

Mark the Date: August 20th, Labour Relations Board Hearing – FISH-NL hires province’s top labour lawyer

The Federation of Independent Sea Harvesters of Newfoundland and Labrador (FISH-NL) wishes to inform inshore harvesters and the public at large that Aug. 20th has been set as the date for a hearing before the province’s Labour Relations Board. As well, St. John’s lawyer David Goodland — one of the top labour lawyers in the province with a proven track record of holding the FFAW-Unifor to account — has been hired to represent FISH-NL. “Harvesters have needed the patience of a tonne of saints in waiting for the Labour Relations Board to deal with FISH-NL’s application for certification, but after 19 months we’re getting there,” says Ryan Cleary, President of FISH-NL. “We’ll get the vote yet.” >click to read<17:21

FISH-NL demands Ottawa explain itself in light of massive cuts to caplin quotas

The Federation of Independent Sea Harvesters of Newfoundland and Labrador (FISH-NL) is demanding Ottawa explain itself in light of huge cuts to caplin quotas in the Gulf of St. Lawrence and off eastern and southern Newfoundland and Labrador. “This is a banner year for caplin in the Gulf with the federal government’s own scientists reporting an abundance of fish not seen in years, and yet the quota has been cut by 35 per cent,” says Ryan Cleary, President of FISH-NL. “How does that make sense? It doesn’t.” “At the same time, scientists said in March that the caplin stock off eastern Newfoundland and Labrador was down 70 per cent, but the relatively small commercial fishery isn’t having an impact,” he added. >click to read<11:57

FISH-NL – Inshore harvesters and aboriginals should have to abide by same fishing regulations

The Federation of Independent Sea Harvesters of Newfoundland and Labrador (FISH-NL) says two sets of commercial fishing rules for aboriginal versus non-aboriginal harvesters are creating an unfair playing field on the northwest Atlantic. “Aboriginal harvesters do not have to follow the same regulations as other commercial harvesters when they’re fishing the same fish, side by side at the same time ,” says Ryan Cleary, President of FISH-NL. “That’s not only unfair, but it creates a competitive advantage for aboriginal harvesters and breeds division.” >click to read<11:22

FISH-NL Calls For Resignation of Dominic LeBlanc, Federal Minister of Fisheries and Oceans

The Federation of Independent Sea Harvesters of Newfoundland and Labrador (FISH-NL) is calling for Dominic LeBlanc’s resignation in light of his failure to address the current fisheries crisis. “Twenty six years after the northern cod moratorium, and the federal minister of Fisheries and Oceans still isn’t prepared to lead and do what needs to be done,” said Ryan Cleary, President of FISH-NL. “It’s time for LeBlanc to get out of the way, or for the Prime Minster to replace him.” ,,, LeBlanc has made a number of decisions as minister that have hurt this province, >click to read<11:56

Latest joke in labour circus; FFAW’s top executives acclaimed after thousands blocked from union election: FISH-NL

The Federation of Independent Sea Harvesters of Newfoundland and Labrador (FISH-NL) calls the final slate of candidates for the FFAW-Unifor executive the latest joke in an ongoing labour circus. “How Keith Sullivan or Dave Decker can look the membership in the face is beyond me,” says Ryan Cleary, President of FISH-NL. “But then how any labour leader in this province can stand by as the democratic rights of inshore harvesters are stripped from them is another mystery.” Nominations for the FFAW-Unifor’s 16-member executive board closed May 28th, and the union announced Monday that the top two union positions — president (Sullivan), and secretary-treasurer (Decker) — were uncontested. >click to read<09:29

One step closer to a vote: Labour Relations Board orders hearing into FISH-NL’s application for certification

The Federation of Independent Sea Harvesters of Newfoundland and Labrador (FISH-NL) welcomes a decision by the province’s Labour Relations Board to order a hearing into its application for certification. “We’re one step closer to a vote,” says Ryan Cleary, President of FISH-NL. “But we need all hands to contribute to our Go Fund Me campaign to build the legal fund that’s critical to pushing this over the top.” Glenn Branton, CEO of the Labour Relations Board, wrote a notification earlier today to all parties involved in FISH-NL’s application. “The issue to be decided at the hearing will be which fishers should be included in the unit for the purpose of the Board deciding whether a certification vote should be held,” he wrote. >click to read<15:29

Ryan Cleary: What makes an inshore fish harvester?

I write this letter to inform your readers why it’s important to define an inshore fish harvester for purposes of a vote by the Labour Relations Board to ultimately decide which union should represent them. Here are three, real-life examples: 1) Two men who hold commercial fishing licenses are on the provincial government’s “sunshine list” as having made more than $100,000 in base salary/overtime in 2016 (one alone made more than $130,000), should they also be eligible to vote? 2) A teenager worked aboard his grandfather’s boat a couple of summer’s ago to help him out, and had a fish sale put in his name, with dues automatically remitted to the FFAW/Unifor. Should he be given a vote? 3) A man works aboard a fishing boat for a trip or two a couple of summers ago, never to set foot on a boat again. Should he be entitled to a ballot? >click to read<10:41 

No mutiny: FFAW bans all FISH-NL supporters from running in its elections

All fish harvesters and processors who tried to split from Newfoundland and Labrador’s only fisheries union are now banned from running for executive positions. The Fish, Food and Allied Workers Union (FFAW) has altered its constitution to require anyone running in this summer’s election to sign an affidavit stating they have never signed a card with another organization. “If there’s people out there who are looking to tear down the organization, those people certainly cannot run for office,” Sullivan said.>click to read<10:00

FISH-NL reiterates call for province to allow in outside buyers in light of shrimp fiasco on Northern Peninsula

“Inshore harvesters are blocked from earning the best possible price for their shrimp by a pricing system that doesn’t work for them,” says Ryan Cleary, President of FISH-NL. “The situation is a mess, with harvesters warning of ‘war on the water,’ and it’s time for the province to get off its arse.” Inshore harvesters on the Great Northern Peninsula are reporting catch rates of shrimp in the Gulf of St. Lawrence to be “as good as they’ve been in their lifetimes,” but an unfair price is keeping 8-10 boats in communities like Port aux Choix and Port Saunders tied to the wharf. >click to read<10:47

FISH-NL calls on FFAW-Unifor to appeal 2018 crab price; questions why union isn’t fighting for inshore harvesters

The Federation of Independent Sea Harvesters of Newfoundland and Labrador (FISH-NL) is calling on the FFAW-Unifor to appeal the price of snow crab set in early April by the Standing Fish Price Setting Panel. “Why isn’t the FFAW-Unifor fighting for inshore crab harvesters?” questions Ryan Cleary, President of FISH-NL. “The $4.55 a pound price set for snow crab in this province is well below the $5 a pound offered in the Maritimes, and the $8 a pound wholesale price that Japanese buyers were reportedly lining up to pay earlier this month.”>click to read<12:33

Throw out FISH-NL application, FFAW says after labour board ruling

The results of an investigation by the Labour Relations Board is proof that FISH-NL has insufficient support to trigger a ratification vote and its application to represent inshore fish harvesters should be dismissed, says Fish Food and Allied Workers union president Keith Sullivan. FISH-NL president Ryan Cleary, however, says the latest development is just more “smoke and mirrors” by the FFAW.  Sullivan issued a news release Friday saying an investigation by the provincial government board has confirmed that membership numbers presented by the FFAW are accurate. >click to read<12:14

Broken down coast guard ship delays spring science survey; DFO’s mismanagement borders on criminal negligence

The Federation of Independent Sea Harvesters of Newfoundland and Labrador (FISH-NL) says the delay of the 2018 multi-species survey in waters off the province because of a broken down science vessel is yet another example of Ottawa’s ongoing gross mismanagement of the fisheries. “Most commercial stocks off our province are in free fall, and the Government of Canada still can’t get the baseline science right,” says Ryan Cleary, President of FISH-NL. >click to read<12:53

Northern cod an icon for fisheries mismanagement

I wish to respond to the March 31 letter to the editor (“Northern cod numbers no reason to panic: FFAW”) by Keith Sullivan, President of the FFAW-Unifor. Sullivan is correct — the latest scientific information on the health of the Northern Cod stock isn’t reason to “panic.” Indeed, the news from DFO science of a 30 per cent decline in the iconic resource that was already deep in the “critical” zone is reason for inshore harvesters to riot in the streets, or, at the very least, burn the few union cards left. The news is also reason to demand an independent investigation of the management practices of the federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) in the Newfoundland and Labrador region. >click to read<10:13

THE LAST FISH SUPPER

Northern cod is in trouble again, and fingers of blame point in many directions, but the bull’s-eye is on the FFAW-Unifor’s head. It was the union (secretary-treasurer Dave Decker specifically), along with west coast businessman/Fish Lord Bill Barry, that came up with the idea of/created the NL Groundfish Industry Development Council (GIDC). It was the GIDC that devised the 2016/2017 northern cod management plans, with ZERO input from inshore harvesters and the financial blessing of the federal/provincial governments, who gave $20,000 each to cover start-up costs.>click to read<15:44 

Northern cod stock declined over last year; scientists urge minimum fishing effort

Those in the province’s fishing industry hoping the northern cod would be ready for a commercial fishery in a few years’ time — a saviour to an industry suffering repeated blows from declining crab and shrimp stocks — better hold on to their hooks and nets. Northern cod this year are in the same leaky boat, having declined significantly over the past year. And that has come as a surprise to many because the northern cod stocks off the province’s east and northeast coast showed promising growth since 2012 — the first real glint of light since the dark and uncertain days of the northern cod stock collapse of the late 1980s and early 1990s. >click to read<10:10

FFAW-Unifor files Supreme Court application in ‘desperate’ attempt to block vote on union representation: FISH-NL

The Federation of Independent Sea Harvesters of Newfoundland and Labrador (FISH-NL) describes the latest legal maneuvers by the FFAW-Unifor to try and derail a vote by inshore harvesters on their union representation as an “act of desperation.” “The FFAW-Unifor executive knows they’ll lose a vote, and are desperate to cling to power,” says Ryan Cleary, President of FISH-NL. “They’re using the courts and legal costs to try and quash the FISH-NL movement, but we’re past the point of no return — a vote must happen before inshore harvesters and the fishery can move forward.”>click to read< 13:42

FISH-NL questions whether Ottawa purposely is out to eliminate inshore fishery and outports along with it

The Federation of Independent Sea Harvesters of Newfoundland and Labrador (FISH-NL) says Ottawa’s decision to award a new Arctic surf clam licence to East Coast aboriginal groups amounts to Indigenous reconciliation on the backs of inshore harvesters and rural communities.,, “Our inshore harvesters and rural communities should be at the head of the line for any new quotas,” says Ryan Cleary, President of FISH-NL. “Our harvesters are starving for fish, and the feds are taking from the few healthy stocks we have left, and carving them up for groups with no connection to the resource. That’s just wrong.” >click to read< 12:07

Only room for one fleet; FISH-NL advises Ottawa to reserve northern shrimp in SFA 6 for the inshore

The Federation of Independent Sea Harvesters of Newfoundland and Labrador (FISH-NL) is calling for an immediate halt to the fishing of northern shrimp by factory-freezer trawlers in waters off Newfoundland’s northeast coast and southern Labrador until stocks rebound. In light of more scientific bad news today on the state of northern shrimp in that area, which is known as Shrimp Fishing Area (SFA) 6, FISH-NL calls on the federal government to reserve the limited quota solely for the inshore fleet, and ban fishing altogether when shrimp are spawning. Further, FISH-NL requests that Ottawa assign a quota of northern shrimp to the inshore fleet further north off Labrador in SFA 5. >click to read<17:43

FISH-NL: DFO outreach meetings prove FFAW-Unifor no longer voice of inshore harvesters

The Federation of Independent Sea Harvesters of Newfoundland and Labrador (FISH-NL) says the most common issue during a recent series of outreach meetings held around the province by the federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans is that the FFAW-Unifor is no longer the voice of inshore harvesters. “That sentiment was expressed at every single meeting — without exception — and with union representatives front and centre in the room,” says Ryan Cleary, President of FISH-NL. “The FFAW-Unifor no longer speaks for most harvesters, and that message should be loud, clear, and obvious to the entire fishing industry, including federal Minister Dominic LeBlanc.” >click to read< 09:27

FFAW, FISH-NL at odds over what Fisheries Act amendments will mean for N.L.’s inshore fishery

The federal Liberal Government said Tuesday it is restoring protections for the fishing industry that were taken away by the former Conservative government in 2012. And, in making the announcement, Fisheries and Oceans Minister Dominic LeBlanc said there is more good news for the country’s fishing industry. The minister announced $284.2 million to support the restoration of protections to fish and fish habitats and to incorporate new modern safeguards in the industry. >click to read< 09:32

FISH-NL – Ottawa’s failure to include adjacency principle in Fisheries Act amendments ‘grave injustice’

The Federation of Independent Sea Harvesters of Newfoundland and Labrador (FISH-NL) says Ottawa’s failure to include the principles of adjacency and historical attachment in the reformed Fisheries Act — to ensure inshore harvesters have priority access to fish off their shores — is a grave injustice. “It’s one thing for the Trudeau government to move to protect the independent commercial fishery, but that’s useless unless harvesters have fish to catch,” says Ryan Cleary, President of FISH-NL. >click to read< 15:15

Bonavista area fishers meet DFO

Dennis Miller of Burgoyne’s Cove is a typical inshore fisherman. Fishing up to 50 miles from shore in a 39-ft 11-inch boat, he makes his living from groundfish, capelin, herring, mackerel, lobster and snow crab.,, He wonders if the Department of Fisheries and Oceans will give smaller boats, like his, access to turbot by opening up fishing zones closer to shore. He was one of about 30 fishers who showed up for the meeting.,, With FISH-NL and the Fish, Food and Allied Workers (FFAW) in the same room, there was bound to be an argument. >click here to read< 14:24 

FISH-NL calls on Federation of Labour to clarify FFAW’s fate

The Federation of Independent Sea Harvesters of Newfoundland and Labrador (FISH-NL) is calling on the province’s Federation of Labour to clarify whether the FFAW can remain a member following the decision by Unifor, its national affiliate, to leave the Canadian Labour Congress (CLC). “Inshore harvesters are demanding to know the lay of the land with the local labour movement,” says Ryan Cleary, President of FISH-NL. >click here to read<11:06 

FISH-NL – Solidarity isn’t forever with FFAW/Unifor so much as when it suits them

The Federation of Independent Sea Harvesters of Newfoundland and Labrador (FISH-NL) says Unifor’s reasoning for its break from the Canadian Labour Congress (CLC) is nothing short of ironic and hypocritical. “Unifor, the largest private-sector union in Canada, is splitting from the CLC over a disagreement about the rights of workers to choose what union should represent them, while one of its affiliate unions, the FFAW, has blocked the province’s inshore harvesters for 13 months from voting on their union fate,” says Ryan Cleary, President of FISH-NL. >click here to read< 14:41

FISH-NL commends Ottawa on new lifeboat stations, but search-and-rescue helicopters still work banker’s hours

The Federation of Independent Sea Harvesters of Newfoundland and Labrador (FISH-NL) says Ottawa’s commitment to new lifeboat stations in this province is commendable, but it’s not the No. 1 search-and-rescue issue facing mariners “The Canadian military’s Gander-based, search-and-rescue Cormorant helicopters are the fastest form of rescue and they still operate on banker’s hours,” says Ryan Cleary, President of FISH-NL. “A lifeboat won’t cut it when the survival time in the North Atlantic — in the absence of a survival suit — is measured in minutes.” click to read the press release 18:28

FISH-NL questions quiet reopening of Canadian ports to banned Faroese and Greenland trawlers

The Federation of Independent Sea Harvesters of Newfoundland and Labrador (FISH-NL) is calling on Ottawa to explain its decision almost a year ago to quietly reopen Canadian ports to trawlers from the Faroe Islands and Greenland that had been banned for overfishing northern shrimp. “Why exactly was the ban lifted, and why didn’t the federal government make the news public when the decision was made?” questions Ryan Cleary, President of FISH-NL. click here to read the press release 11:48