Yvonne Jones, MHA for the District of Cartwright-L’Anse au Clair, made a
presentation yesterday to the Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO)
consultation committee on shrimp resource allocations. During her
presentation, Jones called for a community shrimp allocation for Black
Tickle and an end to the practice of giving private companies a shrimp
allocation tied to the company, rather than individual communities.
consultation process was attended by processors and other Atlantic provinces
seeking a shrimp allocation. The Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture, Tom
Rideout, was noticeably absent from the proceedings.
"In the past, other provinces and private companies were given
allocations of our shrimp," said Ms. Jones. "This is totally unacceptable
and should not be permitted to happen. Private companies are given shrimp
allocations that can be processed at sea and dumped into the marketplace
without ever being brought to Newfoundland and Labrador for processing. We
have already witnessed in Harbour Breton what can happen when a company
decides to close their plant and take their quota out of the community.
Private companies should not be permitted to operate in this manner.
"In 2003, a coalition of communities on the northern peninsula were given
a shrimp allocation that helped diversify and grow the economy of several
communities. The federal government must consider these community proposals
as the future for shrimp allocations. This will ensure that quotas are with
the communities for the long-term economic and employment needs of residents
in areas adjacent to the resource.
"It is in this spirit that I am calling for a community shrimp allocation
for Black Tickle. The community is currently looking for a 2,000 tonne quota
that will help grow and diversify the economy. The community is isolated, an
economically depressed area that could use this allocation to grow into
other industries, and adjacent to the resource. A shrimp quota would provide
the necessary funding to move into other species such as whelk, clams and
sea urchins. The royalties generated from this processing would be invested
back into the community and create new economic growth in this region of our
"I believe the federal government must consider this proposal and similar
community quotas. I was disappointed that Minister Rideout was not present
at this meeting, especially in light of the circumstances currently facing
Harbour Breton and other fishing communities. A decision is expected in
February or March and, while it is not popular with processors and the other
provinces, I am hopeful that DFO will look favourably on this proposal that
is in the best interests of Newfoundlanders and Labradorians."