Winnipeg, MB (Feb 13, 2018) – Manitoba Metis Federation President David Chartrand brings together Métis fishers and other principals to find solutions and shape the future of the troubled fisheries industry.
The MMF convened the emergency meeting after news that Métis fishers in Manitoba are awaiting hundreds of thousands of dollars in payments.
“Our fishers are facing very real, very serious challenges right now,” said President Chartrand. “They have been bound by these long-term contracts which are working against them instead of for them.”
Representatives from federal Fisheries, Oceans and the Canada Coast Guard and Manitoba Sustainable Development joined President Chartrand and MMF Minister Responsible for Fisheries, John Parenteau, in welcoming the delegates who included licensed active Metis fishers and processing plant owners.
Delegates addressed the key issues facing the commercial fisheries. These discussions were informed by presentations from the Manitoba Cooperative Association and a partner from business consulting firm MNP who spoke on lessons from the Canadian Wheat Board on entering the free market.
“I have made it clear that the inland commercial fishery, vital as it is to the income and health of many of our families and communities, will not survive the way it is presently structured, “ said President Chartrand. “We will be meeting soon with the Prime Minister and his Ministers on priorities under the Canada-Métis Nation Accord. I intend to raise the crisis in the industry and its impact on our people as a priority demanding our immediate attention and action. The industry is the last remaining traditional economy of our people.”