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Justice for Wild Salmon

Monday, October 25th 2010 10:53:29am

Media Release

Cohen Commission challenged to open the can of worms of salmon farming

(Jericho Beach, Vancouver, October 25, 2010) – The Wild Salmon People will stream to the opening of the Cohen Commission later today at the end of a 7-day journey which began by rafting through Hell’s Gate.   Justice Cohen will be presented with a Sacred Salmon scroll signed by people throughout the Fraser River watershed.  Alexandra Morton launches from Jericho Beach at 8.30am in a flotilla of canoes including the Mayor of Vancouver, Grand Chief Stewart Phillip, Chief Marilyn Baptiste, Fin Donnelly MP and six-year old Twyla Bella Frid.  At Vanier Park (9am) the paddlers will be officially welcomed by First Nations leaders and at 10am the Wild Salmon People will march across Burrard Bridge to the opening of the Cohen Commission (701 West Georgia Street) and then a rally at the Vancouver Art Gallery (12 Noon start).  

Alexandra Morton, who has standing at the Cohen Commission, said, “The only way the Cohen Commission can answer how much impact salmon feedlots are having on wild salmon is if Justice Cohen orders full disclosure of 18 years of disease data from the Norwegian industry growing Atlantic salmon on the Fraser salmon migration route.  Privately-owned companies cannot be allowed to evade public scrutiny and pour disease into BC’s pristine waters, slamming the door on Government inspections.  The public has the right to know the truth and we deserve total transparency not secrecy.”

“National Chief Shawn Atleo blessed the departure of the Wild Salmon People as we left Hope on Wednesday to paddle down the Fraser River and we have been honoured to be hosted en route by Chawathil, Skwah, Matsqui, Katzie and Musqueam First Nations.  Martin Luther King and Gandhi showed us how to protect ourselves, our land and our future from governments that have forgotten that they serve us, the people, not the corporations.  Peacefully, powerfully we have to walk together in the face of disrespect.”

The Paddle for Wild Salmon was joined on Saturday in Musqueam by two canoes skippered by Darren Blaney of the Homalco First Nation and Joe Martin of the  from Tla-o-qui-aht First Nations who made the journey from Sidney across the Salish Sea.  The flotilla is comprised of Voyageur canoes donated by Ridge Wilderness Adventures and a safety raft from Fraser River Raft Expeditions.  A 70ft yacht from Bluewater Adventures escorted the paddlers around Point Grey and into Jericho Beach yesterday where they were welcomed by Musqueam Indian Band and Squamish Nation.  

Salmon Are Sacred released a new film by Twyla Roscovich last week.  Watch “Salmon Farm Diseases and Sockeye” – online via: http://www.callingfromthecoast.com/

Salmon Are Sacred is dedicated to lifting the lid on salmon farm diseases.  If Norwegian corporations (who control 92% of BC salmon farms) are not killing BC’s wild salmon, it is time for them to prove it.

Download these event posters via: http://www.salmonaresacred.org/sites/default/files/files/Is-Your-Dinner-Diseased.pdf

For more details of ‘The Paddle for Wild Salmon’ please visit: http://www.salmonaresacred.org/paddle-wild-salmon
Follow the journey at Alexandra’s blog: http://alexandramorton.typepad.com/
For more details on the Wild Salmon People please visit: www.wildsalmonpeople.ca

Contact:     
Don Staniford: 250-230-1172
Alexandra Morton: 250- 974- 7086