Tag Archives: Independent fishermen

COVID-19 Relief Aid For Fish Harvesters

Canada’s National Observer, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

The federal government released details of long-anticipated COVID-19 relief aid for fish harvesters Wednesday.

But critics argue that while the government was slow to deliver the programs, the Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) expects commercial fish harvesters to apply quickly, and right in the middle of fishing season. The relief programs may also shut out some new fishers carrying heavy debt, they say.

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BC’s Fishing Industry Needs A Lifeline

Canada’s National Observer, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Wes Erikson has spent his entire life working the waters of B.C.’s west coast, working gruelling hours on deck in some of the worst kinds of weather.

A fourth-generation commercial fisherman, Erikson started fishing on his father’s vessel at the age of five, graduating to paid deckhand by age eight. By 19, he’d purchased his first boat — and its associated halibut licence.

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Four Decades Of Gillnetting On Cortes Island

There are more than more 40 names on the Cortes Island Museum’s list of fishermen from the 1970’s. Some were wives, who worked alongside their husbands. Others may have been deckhands. The names of 28 boats are given, though not how many were working in any given year. Now there are two.[1] In this week’s radio program (podcast below), the owner of one of those 28 fish boats describes close to four decades of gillnetting on Cortes Island.

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