Ferris Supports Change to Fishing Legislation
The Sinn Féin Spokesperson on Fisheries, Martin Ferris TD, has called for changes to be made to the existing legislation which imposes criminal penalties on fishermen found to be in breach of regulations. The Kerry North TD was speaking during a debate on a private members bill proposing to replace the current penalties with administrative measures and fines.
Deputy Ferris said:
“The current system and the manner in which the Sea Fisheries Protection Authority operates are causing a great deal of resentment among fishing and coastal communities. Many fishermen feel that they are being criminalised under the current system and also contrast what they regard as the heavy handed approach to Irish fishermen with the lack of attention paid to foreign vessels fishing in Irish waters.
“We also need to take control of the Irish fishing sector away from Brussels. We need to tackle the bigger issues such as the manner in which the fishery is administered by the EU and the totally unfair distribution of quota which gives Irish fishermen a tiny proportion relative to that handed to the rest of the European fleet. That and other issues need to be tackled as part of the current review and proposed reform of the Common Fisheries Policy.” ENDS