As much as I have issues with a lot of what DFO does / doesn't do, in this particular matter I don't believe they (the Front Line Troops anyway) can be held responsible for the developments of late. Their hands are VERY
much tied in what they can or cannot do by Court Rulings, Legislation and Policy that have declared Hand's Off when it comes to First Nations except under the most extreme of situations. As many FN's (most in BC in fact) have as yet ''undefined'' Rights regarding resource access, until such time as Final Agreements (Treaties) have been realized with each, the Justice System simply cannot address anything that even comes close to defining what those Rights might be. Simply stated, even the Supreme Court of Canada cannot
enter into defining FN Rights and/or Privileges. These, Constitutionally
be set out in a Negotiated Settlement BEFORE
consideration can be applied to those who might step foot outside of them.
I initiated this thread to note the action regarding the posting of the Public Notice regarding local FN fishing activities. For that, I do believe DFO has taken a mighty step forward. It was a good First Step
and took considerable intestinal fortitude to do so. What can legally follow is anyone's guess, however I perceive something must be in the works, or that Notice wouldn't even have been considered. Defining what that something
may be is now in the hands of both DFO and the FN's. In my mind's eye, it is very much a Catch-22 scenario for the Department - they have now drawn a line in the sand, what they now do when that line is crossed will, for better or worse, be instrumental in defining future relations with all BC First Nations, as well as Public Perception of DFO's ability to deal with such occurrences.
Here's a related broadcast that aired yesterday: News Story
Kinda telling the story as it were.
So, Interesting Times
in the Alberni Valley for certain. It will be VERY intriguing to follow the developments as they unfold. I will attempt to stay on top of those (tricky as I am away a LOT this time of year) and post what I learn as I am able.