Letters needed on halibut allocation

To the Editor:

To the Editor:

The intended purpose of this letter is to inform all Recreational Anglers of the Department of Fisheries and Ocean’s Halibut Allocation Policy. 

The specific injustice of the current DFO’s Halibut Policy is that it allocates 88 per cent of Halibut Stocks to 436 Commercial Halibut License Holders and 12 per cent to the rest of the Canadian population who are potential Recreation Anglers.  Some of these 436 Commercial License holders may not even be Canadian.  How a grossly unfair distribution of a Canadian Common resource exists defies common sense. I can not believe that the Conservative Government is allowing the DFO Minister to enforce this unfair policy.  Furthermore, because of this policy, Halibut closed to Recreation Anglers October 18, 2010 while the Commercial sector fished on. This is not a conservation issue, it is a misallocation of Halibut Stocks.

The Sport Fishing Institute estimates that if the current DFO Halibut Allocation Policy is not changed Halibut will be closed to Recreation Anglers in July 2011.

The Sports Fishing Institute, B.C Wildlife Federation (BCWLF) and the Sports Fishing Advisory Board (SFAB) have been negotiating with D.F.O with no success.  The only way that this absurd policy is going to change is for the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans to receive a letter or e-mail from each and every Recreational angler and indeed from each and every Canadian who thinks this policy is wrong.

The importance of letters or e-mails to the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, Minister Gail Shea Shea.G@parl.gc.ca can NOT be emphasized enough. If everyone does their part by sending a letter or email to the Minister, we can make a difference.   

The Sports Fishing Institute (SFI) has just formed an alliance with the B.C Wildlife Federation (BCWLF), the Southern Vancouver Island Anglers Association and the BC Federation of Driftfishers to right the imbalance of this unfair allocation of Canada’s Halibut resource. This alliance has also launched a website www.sfibc.com to provide information.  They are also asking other groups to join this alliance.  Please contact Alison Obrecht at SFI if your group wishes to join.  alison@sportfishing.bc.ca  We are hoping every Fishing Group, Rod and Gun, Chamber of Commerce, Labour Union and many other groups join this alliance. SFI is also coordinating the efforts of individuals by requesting that copies of letters and e-mails to the Minister be sent to info@sportfishing.bc.ca  Please also send a copy of your letter or e-mail to our MP Nathan Cullen at Cullen.N@parl.gc.ca

The voice of everyone who thinks that the DFO Halibut Allocation Policy is wrong, needs to be heard in Ottawa.  Please send an e-mail or letter to the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans.  I also urge everyone to forward this info to your contacts.    

Honorable Minister Gail Shea Shea.G@parl.gc.ca 

Honorable Minister Gail Shea

House of Commons

Ottawa, Ontario, K1A 0A6

 A letter to the Minister does not require a stamp. You will be rewarded with the satisfaction of doing your part to correct a DFO policy that is grossly unfair. 

 Ron Wakita

City Centre Hardware, Kitimat

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