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Fishermen to demonstrate in region Sept. 14

Anger and concern expressed by fishermen who believe food fishery is being abused 


Published on September 13, 2017

Many lobster fishermen in the region claim commercial fishing is taking place within the Aboriginal food fishery.

©Contributed

South West Nova - Stakeholders in the lobster fishing industry will be demonstrating at Department of Fisheries and Oceans offices in Digby, Tusket, Meteghan and possibly Barrington on Thursday, Sept. 14 at 8 a.m.

There will be a designated person at each location to provide information about the fishermen’s agenda and strategies.

“The demonstrations are to express concern with the failure in the systems between DFO and Ottawa,” said a spokesperson who wishes to remain anonymous.

“Somewhere the system has failed and we want to know why.”

Three to four hundred commercial fishermen have been contacted to attend.

They will be protesting during business hours until the fishermen receive some answers.

“Hopefully we’ll get to some peaceful solutions,”  said the spokesperson.

He added that there will be no conflict and that those attending respect the treaty and the rights of natives to be on the water.

“What we’re frustrated with is the lack of compliance and enforcement of the Fisheries Act, which is the Law of Canada. That’s the direction we’re taking on this.”

Last week fishermen gathered on several evenings in Yarmouth on Lobster Rock Wharf to draw attention to their claims and beliefs of commercial fishing taking place within the Aboriginal food fishery.

While fishermen know there is an Aboriginal court-upheld treaty right to fish for food, social and ceremonial purposes, they believe sales of catches are happening as well.