AFN National Chief Perry Bellegarde on the lobster conflict

Published: Oct 14, 2020News

(Ottawa, ON) – “This conflict has been steadily escalating for more than a month. It is time for the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, the federal government, and the provincial government to intervene before someone gets badly injured or, possibly, killed.  This has never been a commercial disagreement, and the actions of non-Indigenous fishers are meant to harass and intimidate the First Nations with whom they share the waters and the resources within them.

“The Supreme Court of Canada made it amply clear in its Marshall decision that Indigenous peoples have a right to fish those waters, and First Nations should not be bullied off the water in this thuggish manner.  We expect the federal government to ensure the safety of everyone in Canada and to bring to justice to anyone who threatens violence or deprives others of their rights to food and a modest income.”

“Continued inaction by the police, and the unwillingness of the federal government to intervene directly in this dispute, only serves to increase the risk of racial violence and damage to these communities, which could last for generations.  Justice must be served, and this intimidation must end.”

The AFN is the national organization representing First Nations citizens in Canada.  Follow AFN on Twitter @AFN_Updates.

For more information please contact:

Michael Hutchinson
Interim Communications Director
Assembly of First Nations
613-859-6831 (cell)
[email protected]

Karen Joyner
Communications Officer
Assembly of First Nations
613-292-0857 (cell)
[email protected]