OTTAWA, Feb. 8, 2012 /CNW/ - The Heritage Canada Foundation (HCF) is
launching a campaign to encourage federal investment in the efforts of local groups and
communities to save their lighthouses.
The Government of Canada owns hundreds of iconic lighthouses. Earlier
this year, Canadians were shocked to learn that the Department of
Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) had declared more than 500
lighthouses—including the most historic ones—as "surplus."
The Heritage Lighthouse Protection Act (HLPA), which came into effect in May 2010, was intended to conserve and
protect heritage lighthouses. However the Act excludes lighthouses that
are declared "surplus" from being designated unless a community group
or private owner commits to buy or otherwise acquire them and protect
their heritage character. As a result, local groups and communities are
now under pressure to assume the financial responsibility for
maintenance and protection of almost all of Canada's iconic
The Standing Senate Committee on Fisheries and Oceans stated in their
March 2011 Report on the Implementation of the Heritage Lighthouse Protection Act that the Act's intent was undermined by DFO's action.
"HCF agrees with the Senate Committee that federal support is essential
to help communities save our country's lighthouses before they're lost
to demotion and neglect," says Natalie Bull, HCF's executive director.
"The Save Canada's Lighthouses campaign is designed to raise awareness,
and attract federal support to these important icons."
Canadians are urged to sign the petition at www.savecanadaslighthouses.ca. Time is also running out to nominate lighthouses for designation: To
be considered, each lighthouse requires a nomination supported by 25 people and submitted to the Minister of the Environment
by May 29, 2012.
The Heritage Canada Foundation is a national registered charity
dedicated to the preservation of Canada's historic places.
SOURCE HERITAGE CANADA FOUNDATION
For further information:
Carolyn Quinn, Director of Communications, firstname.lastname@example.org
Telephone: 613-237-1066 ext. 229; Cell: 613-797-7206