Defend the Wild Salmon Policy

This entry was posted in Policy and Management, Watershed Watch Activities and tagged . Filed In: . Posted by Trish Hall on

The bureaucrats at the Department of Fisheries and Oceans and their political masters are hoping that citizens like you aren’t interested in what I’m about to tell you, even though it is vital to the future of our wild salmon. 

They think your eyes will glaze over when people like me start talking about how our government is poised to gut Canada’s Wild Salmon Policy. They also think you won’t care that monitoring and protection for our salmon runs is at a historic low. They think that if they twist the knife now, you will forget before the next election rolls around. Can you help us prove them wrong?

Click here to take action now, or read on if you want the backstory.

adams-river-sockeyeHere’s the deal. You know that BC’s salmon are facing some big threats and that some salmon runs are doing fine while others are depleted and need to be protected and rebuilt. Luckily, we have a bold action plan for conserving and restoring our salmon and it’s called Canada’s Policy for the Conservation of Wild Pacific Salmon. It was brought in by the previous Liberal government in 2005 and it is now under threat.

Unlike the Fisheries Act, which was severely weakened in 2012 through the removal of habitat protections for fish, the Wild Salmon Policy survived the Harper years unscathed. But now the Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) wants to dismantle the Policy and “align” it with the weakened version of Fisheries Act. But what makes this scheme totally bizarre is that the Trudeau government has promised to restore the lost protections to the Fisheries Act! It sounds crazy, but it’s for real.

This is a stealth attack on our Wild Salmon Policy. In 2012, a massive $37 million taxpayer-funded inquiry recommended that DFO implement the Policy, and the Trudeau government ran on a promise to act on those recommendations. But now their “implementation plan” involves dismantling the policy and weakening it. We can’t let that happen.

At the same time, on-the-ground monitoring and protection for BC salmon hit an all-time low in 2016. Hard-working contractors who earn their living counting fish in our creeks and rivers were volunteering their time so that the health of our salmon runs wouldn’t go unwatched.

Ottawa has gone off the rails in their management of BC’s wild salmon, and we need your help to get them back on track. We can do this! If enough citizens like you stand up NOW, the politicians will do the math and realize that only trouble will come from pinching pennies on salmon monitoring and letting DFO dismantle the Wild Salmon Policy.

Here’s what you can do:

  1. Write a letter to Minister LeBlanc and his Parliamentary Secretary, Terry Beech, demanding that they restore monitoring and protection for our salmon and back off on dismantling the Wild Salmon Policy.
  2. Come out to the public meeting on March 16 in Vancouver and tell the DFO staff there the same thing.
  3. Build our collective power by getting your friends and family on board–let them know what’s happening, share our posts on Facebook, and encourage them to take action, too.


Enough is enough! Let’s stand up to Ottawa and defend our salmon!

Yours in conservation,

P.S. The politicians and bureaucrats think they can get away with weakening protection for BC’s wild salmon. Let them know how wrong they are!

17 Responses to Defend the Wild Salmon Policy

  1. Lynne Donnelly says:

    Dear Minister LeBlanc,
    Wild Pacific salmon are an essential part of lives and livelihoods in BC. I urge you to restore the lost protections to the Fisheries Act that were recommended in the 2012 public inquiry – and which were included in Liberal campaign promises during the last election. Monitoring and protection as outlined in Canada’s Policy for the Conservation of Wild Pacific Salmon are vital.
    Thank you,
    Lynne Donnelly

  2. Gerry Williams says:

    Save the wild salmon. I was disgusted that J. Trudeau approved expansion of open pen fish farming. On a Friday afternoon of a long weekend. Transparent as BS.

    Disappointed supporter

  3. Gloria Lachance says:

    Restore monitoring and protection for our wild salmon. Do not dismantle the Wild Salmon policy – it is needed – money cannot make up for the lost salmon if you weaken protections

  4. Nadja Hocking says:

    Protect our wild salmon! I will never vote Liberal again if you guys don’t start to do what you promised you would for our environment and for our wild salmon here in BC.
    I am fed up with false promises so is everyone else! You promised to protect rivers fish streams lakes the West Coast free from tankers . No more lies thank you. Who is in charge?

  5. marcelle roy says:

    Wild salmon are a vital part of BC’s economy. A key food source for First Nations and for maintaining their cultures and ceremonies. It is tragic to see that the Liberal government is no better than the Conservatives when it comes to the protection of salmon, fish and their habitat. Please restore and strengthen the Fisheries Act as per the Cohen commission’s recommendations. Let not 37 million of our hard earned money go to waste. Please have a conscience!

  6. sherry says:

    Ottawa bureaucrats: take a biology and an ecology course and learn about the relation of wild salmon to the entire West Coast; trees, bears, wolves, shore and sea creatures. It is an ecology, a whole system reliant on each other. Will you be responsible to its utter downfall?

  7. Dr.Colin & Mary Hardie says:

    Restore monitoring for the wild salmon.get fish farms out of the ocean. Mr LeBlanc have you ever seen the area under a fish farm ? DEAD ! Please do not let 37 million dollars go to waste. Thankyou.

  8. E. Labinsky says:

    We share the same environment,I do not understand why our elected officials do not see the importance of doing their utmost to protect our fish,

  9. Shaunison R. says:

    I am 14 and have lived on the coast my whole life fishing for salmon with my dad and also helping salmon. Before, I looked up to the dfo, I probably would’ve worked for them when I grew up, until I found out how much dfo doesn’t give a shit about wild salmon. and how many lies they put out there to trick people to make them think that they protect salmon, but actually their more about the money than the salmon, it always is and that really pisses me off. and its not the scientists and biologists that were tricked into working there, its the big greasy money loving dirtbag that controls them all and gives them jail threats if they say anything about how money making industries affect salmon and the people in charge tell them to say that it is just the weather.
    The dfo has already done a bad enough job managing our wild salmon not dfo’s but our wild salmon and changing the wild salmon policy to Harpers evil lying ways, thats pretty pathetic, well if there actually out there to help salmon and I am spreading the word.
    Please dfo, maybe you can prove to me different and stick up for wild salmon a little more, at least by not changing the wild salmon policy and taking out those salmon farms, and stopping the Kinder Morgan pipeline.

  10. tom says:

    Restore the fisheries act so that it protects all species and ecosystems in Canada’s oceans.

  11. Reid says:

    My question is who are we protecting the wild salmon for? For ALL the people of Canada or only for a chosen few who will defy all existing regulations and common sense and kill the last spawning fish as it reaches the bed. These people only wish to enforce regulations which benefit them. A key food source which the First Nations demanded and have the right to sell as they see fit. This is my conscience. Where is yours? Will you allow this post to stand?

  12. Your attempts to destroy the salmon runs will fail.

  13. Roland Arnet says:

    The wild salmon stocks of B.C. are one of our most
    precious resources.
    We have not done a good job of sustaining this resource,
    but with good protection of habitat, and proper management, we save and restore this gift of nature!

  14. Mike Noble says:

    I am tired of poor management year after year. Our salmon stocks are in decline. If something isn’t done soon my son will never enjoy salmon or steelhead fishing. From Pattisons commercial fleets, unregulated selling of netted salmon out of the back of a truck, environmental and habitat distruction to the small amount of salmon sports fishery take compared to the money feeding BC’s economy. Brutal! Invest back into management. All that money spent on the Cohen inquiry and what recommandations have been followed if any?

  15. Bill Evans says:

    We Canadians are food consuming Human Beings,living in a northern climate, with less opportunity to grow foodstuffs than southern climes. We have had wild food available in the form of salmon forever, would You accept the responsibility for destroying this?

  16. Dawn McDougall says:

    Open pen fish farming are a disaster to our west coast wild salmon. They should not be allowed. The oceans, lakes, rivers and streams need to be protected with enough paid workers to monitor them.

  17. Karen Whiteside says:

    Dear Minister LeBlanc, Thank you for the work you have taken on. Please remember that you do not have to reinvent the wheel to enable BC salmon stock abundance recovery. You already have very good resources in place. You just need to recover and implement protections as well as ensuring the spirit of DFO’s mission is upheld and the work of DFO scientists are not hindered or compromised by conflict of interests: Environmental oversight and science must adhere to rigorous objectivity in favor of protecting (not procuring evidence in favor of industry).
    Please consider proceeding with the robust tools at your immediate disposal.
    (1) Implement (not dismantle) the 2005 Wild Salmon Policy
    (2) Implement the 75 recommendations from the Cohen Commission
    (3) Reinstate the pre-2012 Fisheries Act and river protection in pre-2012 Navigable Waters Act.

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