Heiltsuk heartbroken by herring fishery's re-start, with RCMP protection

Thursday, March 26, 2015

By Mychaylo Prystupa for the Vancouver Observer

“We’re really concerned this fish will be fished to extinction,” said Heiltsuk Chief Councillor Marilyn Slett.  "Our community just can’t bear that risk. The large commercial fishing boats came in and within 12 hours, had scooped up their quota, and finished.

Many Heiltsuk have doubts about the DFO science that justified the fishery's re-opening, saying the government's fish count tests were based on biomass gathered from such a wide area, the results have no relevance to the coastal waters of concern to Heiltsuk. They also point to recent Harper government cutbacks of federal fishery scientists.  

DFO was contacted Monday for comment, but said the department would need 24 hours to respond.But last week, it said: "DFO respects the right to protest, however, we condemn any threat of violence or reprisal against those exercising their right to practice a lawful and sustainable fishery," the department told the Canadian Press.

>Read full story here<