Home Canada Nova Scotia Mi’kmaq chiefs say Ottawa’s new fisheries plan unacceptable

Nova Scotia Mi’kmaq chiefs say Ottawa’s new fisheries plan unacceptable

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Nova Scotia Mi’kmaq chiefs say Ottawa’s new fisheries plan unacceptable

Indigenous fishermen head from the harbour in Saulnierville, N.S. on Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2020.

By Danielle EdwardsThe Canadian Press

Early Newspaper

Thu., March 4, 20212 min. learn

HALIFAX – Mi’kmaq chiefs in Nova Scotia say Ottawa’s new plan to address a battle between Indigenous and industrial fishers is an strive by authorities to adjust fishing rights that aren’t in its mandate.

The Mi’kmaq treaty simply to fish shouldn’t be defined by replace or the federal authorities, Chief Gerald Toney of the Assembly of Nova Scotia Mi’kmaq Chiefs advised a digital news convention Thursday.

He acknowledged the plan released Wednesday by Fisheries Minister Bernadette Jordan is unacceptable. “Minister Jordan as soon as all as soon as more made definite that she sees the Division of Fisheries and Oceans Canada having rotund adjust over rights-primarily primarily based totally fisheries,” Toney acknowledged.

He used to be reacting to a plan by Ottawa that may perchance allow reasonable livelihood fishing activity during the industrial season thru licences issued beneath the Fisheries Act, though the entire amount of fishing within the nation’s waters wouldn’t enlarge.

Toney acknowledged the Mi’kmaq chiefs had been also all for a lack of session by the Fisheries Division.

Nova Scotia Sen. Daniel Christmas shared a identical incompatibility with the new plan, saying in a assertion Thursday it’s unfounded that reasonable livelihood fisheries are reason for wretchedness.

“There are at the 2d 12,047 industrial licences in DFO’s Maritimes design, when put next with totally 472 licences held by First Countries,” Christmas acknowledged. “It’s complex to conceive how this type of ‘David and Goliath’ scenario poses any earn of threat to conservation.”

Mi’kmaq fishers say a Supreme Court resolution from 1999 affirms their simply to fish for a “reasonable livelihood” outside the federally regulated season. The meeting’s peaceable counsel, Bruce Wildsmith, advised journalists Thursday the authorities failed to clarify the consume of the industrial season to limit Mi’kmaq treaty rights.

Each and each the Sipekne’katik and Potlotek First Countries absorb launched court docket cases in opposition to the Nova Scotia authorities, saying existing rules intervene with their treaty simply to fish in pursuit of a reasonable livelihood.

Sipekne’katik and Potlotek, among diversified Mi’kmaq bands, also launched self-regulated lobster fisheries slow final Twelve months, igniting tensions with industrial fishers who argue harvesting outside the federally regulated season would be negative to existing lobster stock.

Nova Scotia Fisheries Minister Keith Colwell acknowledged the province’s rules would seemingly wish to be reviewed within the tournament of a deal between Ottawa and the First Countries over reasonable livelihood fisheries. It’s miles at the 2d illegal to take unlicensed consume within the province.

“If it’s sanctioned by Ottawa and it’s a legitimate licence and meets the entire requirements that DFO has, I’d utter … it’s very possible they (fishers) would be ready to sell,” Colwell acknowledged.

He added that the province would “act accordingly” concerning its rules if an settlement is reached. “Until that occurs, I in truth can’t present you what we would or wouldn’t earn,” Colwell acknowledged.

This picture by The Canadian Press used to be first published March 4, 2021.

— With recordsdata from Keith Doucette

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This epic used to be produced with the financial assistance of the Facebook and Canadian Press News Fellowship.

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Nova Scotia Mi’kmaq chiefs say Ottawa’s new fisheries plan unacceptable