To the Editor,
Last Thursday the Department of Fisheries and Oceans held a conference call regarding the opening date of the fall lobster fishing season.
On the call were representatives from each harbour, a vote was taken to decide whether or not to delay the season.
The majority of votes on the call calling for the usual start to the season came from representatives who only have a few fishermen in there harbours.
All reps from Howards Cove north on P.E.I. voted to delay for safety reasons; we represent 180 fishermen of the 215 on the Island.
A very clear majority in New Brunswick, all reps from Richibucto north voted the same; their numbers are like ours, with about 70 per cent of their fishermen. So about 70 to 80 per cent of fishermen (or at least their representatives) voted to delay for safety reasons. We are also subjected to rougher weather than the sheltered fishermen in the south. All of this was explained to DFO before their decision, this is why this report in your paper bothers us so much and we would like to set the recond straight – the majority of fishermen on the conference call voted for the regular opening date but the majority of all fishermen wanted a delay.