Saturday, June 16, 2018

Joy Thorkelson among those appointed to Provincial Advisory Council to explore pressures on Wild Salmon

Joy Thorkelson joins work of
newly creation Advisory council
on Wild Salmon issues
(City of PR photo
Fourteen British Columbians are being tasked to review the stresses being put on Wild Salmon stocks and key among them will be North Coast union leader and Prince Rupert City councillor Joy Thorkelson, who was named to the panel on Friday

Ms. Thorkelson, who is President of Unifor-UFAWU will bring her perspectives and forty year involvement with the commercial fishery to the Council's work, as the group looks to explore the issues facing Wild Salmon stocks and to provide for guidance on how to protect the resource.

Another pair of familiar names for North Coast residents can also be found in the listings of those on the council as well.

With ecotrust Canada's Tasha Sutcliffe also part of the fourteen member group, Ms. Sutcliffe previously worked in the Prince Rupert office of the Community Fisheries Development Centre.

Tismishian and Heitsuk First Nation commercial fisherman James Lawson will bring his experience in the industry to the panel as well, as they prepare to tackle the challenges ahead.

Some biographies of their work can be found below:
(click to enlarge)

Ms. Thorkelson has been an outspoken critic of Federal policies on fishing in the region and her union has frequently identified problems and offered up suggestions on how best to address fishery issues in British Columbia.

The Wild Salmon Adviosry Council is co-chaired by Doug Routley the MLA for Nanaimo-North Cowichan and Chief Marilyn Slett of the Heiltsuk First Nation.

The group will begin their work this summer, with their findings to be included as part of the provincial government's recommendations to the Select Standing Committee on Agriculture, Fish and Food this fall.

The provincial government is looking to develop proposals for a Made in BC Wild Salmon strategy, part of a public consultation process that will examine the health, habitat and management of Wild Salmon and the sustainability of the wild salmon industry in British Columbia.

Premier John Horgan outlined some of the focus for the Council as part of the introduction of their work on Friday.

“Wild salmon are crucial to the success of our economy, the prosperity of coastal communities, and the lives, culture, and history of Indigenous peoples,” .. “The Wild Salmon Advisory Council brings experts together to help develop a wild salmon strategy to protect B.C. salmon today and for future generations.”

North Coast MLA Jennifer Rice made note of the creation of the Council with a short post to her Facebook page on Friday.

The members of the fourteen person panel include a number of First Nations representatives and representatives from sport, recreational and commercial fishing, as well as MLA's, environmental advocates and other political representatives.

You can learn more about the Council's work here.

More background on fishery issues on the North Coast can be reviewed here.

For more items of interest related to the work of the BC Legislature see our archive page here.

A wider overview of provincial issues can be found on our political blog D'Arcy McGee

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