An unprecedented letter to PM Harper from former Fisheries Ministers
Four former ministers of Fisheries and Oceans – from both Progressive Conservative and Liberal governments – took the extraordinary step of writing an open letter to “Prime Minister” Stephen Harper this week. They expressed their deep concern over the changes to Fisheries regulations in the omnibus Budget Implementation Bill C-38, stating:
“There is genuine public concern over the perceived threat this legislation poses to the health of Canada’s environment and in particular to the well-being of its fisheries resources. We are especially alarmed about any possible diminution of the statutory protection of fish habitat, which we feel could result if the provisions of Bill C-38 are brought into force. Our experience convinces us that the continued survival (of migratory salmon) would be endangered without adequate federal regulation and enforcement, particularly in the area of habitat protection.
“With respect to process, we find it troubling that the government is proposing to amend the Fisheries Act via omnibus budget legislation in a manner that we believe will inevitably reduce and weaken the habitat-protection provisions. Regrettably, despite the significance of the legislation, to date the responsible ministers have provided no plausible, let alone convincing, rationale for proceeding with the unusual process that has been adopted.”
We are living through dangerous and unsettling times in Canada with regard to the ongoing dismantling of environmental legislation and regulations by the Harper government. Concerned Canadians of all political stripes must continue to use any means at our disposal to stand up to this unaccountable tyranny that holds 100% of federal political power after having been elected, with no environmental mandate, by a minority of the population (39%). Let the Harper government be a lesson to us. We must never again allow any Canadian government, whatever the political party, to hold and exercise illegitimate power against the will of the majority.
Read the full letter to Stephen Harper here