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Online licence renewal system a failure

DFO is launching their national online licensing system. This is a big problem to many fishers because it is compulsory instead of optional, and has to be done by Jan. 31 in order to renew one’s license.

From what I’ve heard within the last month or so, up to 50 per cent of fishers haven’t complied. Many don’t know about it, don’t have a computer or access or know how to do it.

I tried to do it last June and failed because it’s too complicated. Many people can’t even read.

When I tried to rectify the problem by phone, DFO sent me a copy of the very same letter from March 22. Couldn’t do it then and still can’t.

This is not an acceptable means of communication when many don’t understand it. I am a representative of clam fishers in CHA 2. We met with DFO (Yarmouth) last fall, told them of the concern, to which they replied “This is the way it was told to us and nothing we (can) do.”

   Last thing I understood of Canada as a democracy, not a dictatorship, but there was no debate. This is just being shoved down our throats. Do we not have the human right to understandable communication?

The Cashin Report was a government undertaking to find out how to get rid of fishers, I’m sad to say it’s still alive and ongoing.

Government offices are mandated to help fishers yet most laws they bring in only serve to get rid of us, the clammer.


Terry Wilkins, Digby

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