March 25, 2020
This evening, the elected snow crab committee members have made the decision to recommend that DFO postpone the crab fishery until at least April 20. The committee chairs and Inshore Council will continue to evaluate the situation on a daily basis to determine whether that date should be extended further.
This situation is unprecedented on many levels. Fish harvesters are committed to social distancing and doing their part to flatten the curve of COVID-19 here in Newfoundland and Labrador. Ensuring all of our members and their families stay safe is the number one priority right now.
We will continue to listen to the concerns of our members and closely monitor the situation while working to come up with the best solution that will keep our members safe while also protecting their livelihoods.
FFAW-Unifor is currently engaged in daily discussions with our elected committees and Councils and with fishing industry colleagues globally regarding their experiences with fisheries in the current environment. We are also engaged in discussions with governments and local processors’ organizations such as ASP and SPONL.
We continue to await details on Minister Jordan’s commitment to extend Employment Insurance for harvesters affected by season delays due to COVID-19. We have also requested that DFO immediately waive all licensing fees for the 2020 season.
We continue to encourage our members to reach out to your staff representatives and inshore council and executive board representatives if you have any questions or concerns. We will continue to provide frequent updates as this situation evolves.