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May 12, 2021
The Assembly of Nova Scotia Mi’kmaw Chiefs is furthering their support of Potlotek’s legal proceedings against the Department of Fisheries and Ocean’s Canada (DFO) through the development of a Netukulimk Livelihood Fisheries Collaborative Enforcement Protocol. This Protocol was provided to DFO yesterday under the Terms of Reference for a Mi’kmaq-Nova Scotia-Canada Consultation Process. The Protocol is intended to further demonstrate to Canada that the Mi’kmaq have developed rules around productive monitoring, enforcement and oversight of fishing activities in relations to their community authorized livelihood plans.
“Community Netukulimk Livelihood plans have been built on respect for the environment and all living things in it,” said Chief Gerald Toney, Fisheries Lead for the Assembly of Nova Scotia Mi’kmaw Chiefs. “Our communities would never have established plans without including rules around fishing activities, conservation and respect for all species. DFO needs to recognize that.”
Respect for Rights, culture, ways of harvesting, mandates, responsibilities, and community justice are all build into the Enforcement Protocols, as well as into Community Netukulimk Harvesting Plans.
Mi’kmaw Chiefs instructed their Consultation and Fisheries Teams at Kwilmu’kw Maw-klusuaqn Negotiation Office (KMKNO) to develop these Protocols to help demonstrate to DFO, and their Conservation and Protection Branch, that the Mi’kmaq share the common concern on the safety of harvesters and the conservation of species.
“The seizure of harvesters’ gear needs to stop! We’ve told DFO that we’re open to collaborating on resource management, but they must be willing to respectfully listen and engage with us,” continued Chief Toney. “Potlotek’s legal proceedings clearly shows how badly real Nation-to-Nation discussions are needed. DFO’s top down approach isn’t working for anyone.”
KMKNO and its member communities are hoping that by developing this collaborative plan, the door will open for more productive discussions with DFO on how we can move forward in our shared waters peacefully.
For more information contact:
Kwilmu’kw Maw-klusuaqn Negotiation Office