Letters to the Editor

Monday, 11 June 2012

Activists take action against Bill C-38 to MP's office

Materials at Ashfield's office. Photo: Michelle Davis, ChoraChroma Photographic
On Saturday morning Occupy Fredericton took protest action against the federal government's Bill C-38 at the constituency office of MP Keith Ashfield. 

Frustrated with the gutting of the Fisheries Act embedded in the bill, the group made it's concerns known to Ashfield by affixing images and written material to the door of his office.

Photo: Michelle Davis, ChoraChroma Photographic
According to online publication, The Lawyers Weekly, the changes to the Fisheries Act look set to jeopardize fish habitat:

"Bill C-38 makes a significant and controversial amendment to the Fisheries Act that would repeal and combine the prohibitions against the “harmful alteration, disruption or destruction of fish habitat” and against the killing of fish, with a single new prohibition on any activity that results in “serious harm to fish that are part of a commercial, recreational or aboriginal fishery or fish that support such a fishery.” The new term “serious harm” is defined as “the death of fish or any permanent alteration to, or destruction of, fish habitat.”

The narrower provision has raised questions about whether the phrase “commercial, recreational or aboriginal fisheries” excludes fish in water bodies such as small streams, tributaries or wetlands. It has also raised concerns about the effect of causing damage to fish that does not actually result in death."
Photo: Michelle Davis, ChoraChroma Photographic
The proposed changes to the Fisheries Act in Bill C-38 have so incensed not one, but four former federal Fisheries and Oceans ministers of both Liberal and Conservative stripes — Tom Siddon, David Anderson, John Fraser, and Herb Dhaliwal, all privy councillors in B.C.  — that in last Saturday's Globe and Mail they jointly penned an open letter to Prime Minister Stephen Harper decrying the changes the bill will bring as it effectively ends the protection of fish habitat.

That put them in concert with 600 Canadian scientists who have also urged the prime minister to "abandon this initiative [BillC-38] as it is currently drafted" because changing the law "would be a most unwise action, which would jeopardize many important fish stocks and the lakes, estuaries and rivers that support them."

Photo: Michelle Davis, ChoraChroma Photographic
The Occupy group plans upcoming action on Bill C-38 around the city to bring more awareness of changes that come with the proposed federal legislation.


  1. Harper will be the destruction of this country!!

  2. I think not. It is the acquiescent mass, who follow the conservative agenda, which bears the burden of responsibility. Harper is nothing but the manifestation of collective anxiety. This is favored by the religious right. The Conservative caucus is allied with the right in Islam, as in Israel. A triple threat working to foster and develop a law and order agenda.; a moral order made binding by law.

    Harper serves well to further our creative resistance of status quo. The authoritarian paradigm is well established. Fully implemented, ino resistance will be permitted in the public square. In this, Harper exemplifies the pattern of tyranny. As do those who serve Harper's purpose in the name of God.

    "Exodus, movement of Jah people..." B. Marley