Sealers’ association opens new office

Colin MacLean
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The Canadian Sealers’ Association got some new digs Thursday.

From left, sealer Gordon Rice, Frank Pinhorn, executive director of the Canadian Sealers Association, Fisheries Minister Clyde Jackman and Eldred Woodford, association president, during the ribbon-cutting ceremony at the association’s new St. John’s office Thursday. — Photo by Colin MacLean/The Telegram

People from all levels of the sealing industry gathered in St. John’s to officially open the association’s new office, located at 368 Hamilton Ave.

“This gives us a place to raise our profile and to operate in a professional manner,” Frank Pinhorn, executive director of the association, told the industry crowd during the grand opening.

This will be the first time in seven years the association has had an office to call home. Its previous office in St. John’s closed in 2004, to the chagrin of many in the province, because of lack of monetary support from sealers.

The new office is being supported by the province, which granted the association $68,000 to set up an office and develop a business plan, as well as the Professional Fish Harvesters Certification Board and the Fish Food and Allied Workers’  (FFAW) union.

These three groups have combined their efforts to offer the sealers’ association administrative assistance and office space for five years. The association hopes to work towards self-sufficiency during that time.

The new office is located in the same building as the FFAW so the two organizations plan on working closely together, Pinhorn said.

 “They have the technology. They have the wherewithal for mass mailouts, to deal with the media and issue press releases and all these things. All those things are in place and we can use all those things to our advantage,” Pinhorn said.

The office is intended to become the focal point for nearly all activity related to sealing in Canada. From their new home, the association will offer training and advocacy for sealers as well as media and public relations for the industry.

The office also consolidates the association as a legitimate and important voice in the Newfoundland and Labrador fisheries, said Fisheries Minister Clyde Jackman during the opening.

“The establishment of this new office marks the beginning of a new era of diversification and growth for both the association and the Canadian sealing industry,” Jackman said.

By working with the union, the certification board and the province, the long-term goal is to have sealers recognized as professional certified harvesters, the minister said.

This goal of certification is only one of many issues facing the sealing industry, said Pinhorn, but Thursday’s opening was a step in the right direction to confronting some of those challenges.

“Our goal right now to is to build the industry, to grow the industry and to advocate the positive aspects of the industry. It’s one of the largest seal resources in the world and it has tremendous potential for rural Newfoundland and Labrador in terms of income and putting people back to work,” he said.

 

cmaclean@thetelegram.com

@TelegramMacLean

Organizations: Professional Fish Harvesters Certification Board

Geographic location: Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada

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Recent comments

  • Duffy
    October 21, 2011 - 20:05

    Wasted money but the politicians would give money to the devil for a vote. When will they realize this is now only a small hunting sport and the market has ended never to be back again. If they would have stopped clubbing years ago maybe there would have been a chance to keep a small hunt but ignorance and a false sense of being powerful led to the end. They need to stop living in the past, wanting to stay in Momas back yard, working across the street and collecting EI for 9 months a year. Move and get jobs like many of us did for years,

  • Brenda Armour
    October 21, 2011 - 09:16

    The Canadian Sealers’ Association receives $58,000 to continue to pursue an elusive dream. The seal hunt is dead. Advocates all over the world will never accept this hunt as being humane. There is no market for seal meat. And oil is a marginal market at best. The court case to overturn the EU ban will not win. The seal cull will never happen. It’s over but the baby still needs a pacifier and continues to drain both federal and provincial tax payers for funding of a dead industry. It is time for an old fashion debate with the groups who oppose the hunt. It is time for the sealer’s to be held accountable for the waste of our taxpayer’s money.

    • Rob
      October 21, 2011 - 15:21

      @Brenda : Nothing elusive here. I think it's a good thing that mentalities keep changing and it will happen with this industry also. The advocates you refer to will never start seeing the broader picture. Others will. Also, people should stop giving human qualities to animals and talking about humane treatment. They are animals, not humans. As as Anthropologist and an animal lover, I find this annoying. BTW, I don't know if you have heard of a country called China, but that is, apparently, a pretty big market...

    • Rob
      October 21, 2011 - 15:22

      @Brenda : Nothing elusive here. I think it's a good thing that mentalities keep changing and it will happen with this industry also. The advocates you refer to will never start seeing the broader picture. Others will. Also, people should stop giving human qualities to animals and talking about humane treatment. They are animals, not humans. As as Anthropologist and an animal lover, I find this annoying. BTW, I don't know if you have heard of a country called China, but that is, apparently, a pretty big market...

    • Barry Vineham
      October 22, 2011 - 09:02

      Armour says " it is a waste of taxpayers money ", what a idiot you are !!! There is no waste when a man tries to feed his family and put clothes on his kid's back . Good luck boys "LET'S MAKE THIS INDUSTRY WORK "!!!!!!!!