NDP following through on fish farm threats, continues economic damage

NANAIMO (June 20, 2018) – Today’s decision by the NDP to make good on its threats to fish farm operators and their tenures sends the wrong message about stability in our province.

BC Liberal Critic for Resource Opportunities Ellis Ross says the NDP continues to ignore the thousands of Indigenous people in B.C. who are employed by the resource sector and who say responsible development brings immense benefits to their communities.

“We believe consultation with Indigenous communities is essential and we also believe that each nation has the right to create jobs for their people,” says Ross. “ Today’s announcement simply reiterates to Indigenous people in B.C. that the status quo will remain in place for them, and that politics is more important than lifting people out of poverty through good jobs and access to opportunity.”

Parksville-Qualicum MLA Michelle Stilwell says the move by the NDP creates more uncertainty for those who work in the resource sector, and threatens the island economy in particular.

“Last fall, Agriculture Minister Lana Popham sent intimidating letters to fish farms, threatening their permits— and today, she’s delivering on that promise,” says Stilwell. “As a result, numerous families along the coast face an uncertain future. They’re worried their next paycheque might be their last.”

“Today’s decision clearly shows the BC NDP have allowed ideology to trump a growing economy,” says BC Liberal Environment Critic Peter Milobar. “How can ranchers or forestry workers or tourist operators expect stability from a government that keeps changing the rules to appease their activist friends? It’s just one in a string of examples of the BC NDP telling the resource development sector that they are not wanted here.”