CAW to Appear Before Standing Committee to Demand Action on Lobster Crisis in Atlantic Provinces

    OTTAWA and ST. JOHN'S, May 13 /CNW/ - CAW/FFAW President Earle McCurdy
will be traveling from Newfoundland to Ottawa tomorrow to appear before the
Parliamentary Standing Committee on Fisheries & Oceans demanding action to
deal with the lobster crisis in Atlantic Canada.
    CAW President Ken Lewenza said that McCurdy has the full support of the
225,000 member union as the CAW/FFAW strives to get a fair deal for those
working in the lobster sector.
    McCurdy will be making his presentation to the Committee at 11:00 a.m. in
Room 371 in the West Block. Representatives of fish harvester organizations in
Quebec and the Maritime provinces have also been invited.
    CAW President Ken Lewenza said that the drop in both crab and lobster
prices is having a terrible impact on those who work in these industries in
the Atlantic provinces.
    "While we often hear about workers in the auto, steel, forestry and other
hard hit sectors, we rarely hear about the plight of workers in the maritime
provinces who have long grappled with the rises and falls of the fishing
industry," said Lewenza. "Their hardship is every bit as dire as the hardship
suffered by workers who are forced out of their jobs in central Canada and
must be taken seriously by all levels of government."
    The Standing Committee meeting will be held as lobster harvesters in
Newfoundland and Labrador begin a four day tie-up in protest against
collapsing lobster prices.
    McCurdy noted that a statement released yesterday by P.E.I. Premier
Robert Ghiz "is a good starting point." Premier Ghiz said P.E.I. and Ottawa
had reached agreement on a comprehensive $8 to $10 million aid package for the
P.E.I. lobster sector.
    The CAW expects that the federal government would make any new programs
on the lobster sector Atlantic wide, since the impact is spread right across
the region.
    CAW/FFAW launched the tie-up in this province after prices dropped an
average of 60 cents to $3.00 a pound, the lowest prices in at least 25 years.
The CAW/ FFAW represents 20,000 working women and men through out Newfoundland
and Labrador.

For further information:

For further information: CAW/FFAW President Earle McCurdy, (cell) (709)
743-5444 or CAW Communications, Shannon Devine, (cell) (416) 302-1699

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