Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters

Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters

December 06, 2007 12:05 ET

Angler harassment is MNR issue

O.F.A.H. calls on MNR to enforce Fish and Wildlife Conservation Act

Attention: Assignment Editor, News Editor, Sports Editor, Government/Political Affairs Editor ONTARIO: O.F.A.H. MEDIA RELEASE--(Marketwire - Dec. 6, 2007) - The Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters (O.F.A.H.) challenges the recent claim by a Ministry of Natural Resources (MNR) spokesperson that there are no anti-harassment laws within the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Act (FWCA).

Section 13 of the provincial Fish and Wildlife Conservation Act clearly states that it is illegal to obstruct or interfere with lawful fishing, hunting and trapping. Regulations for each of these activities are published by the MNR and specify how the Act is to be enforced. The O.F.A.H. believes that any harassment of anglers and hunters engaging in their sport constitutes interference as defined by the Act.

"The O.F.A.H. supports the Canadian Sportfishing Industry Association's demand that the MNR act to fulfill its mandate for enforcement of the fishing regulations under the FWCA," said Greg Farrant, O.F.A.H. Manager of Government Relations and Communications. "We fought hard to enshrine in law, protection for hunters, trappers and anglers from interference or obstruction. For the MNR to suggest that harassment does not constitute interference or obstruction is unacceptable and a clear admission that they are not fulfilling their obligation to Ontarians."

Conservation officers are the first point of contact concerning fish and wildlife related incidents. If upon investigation, they determine that a physical assault or violence has occurred, then the O.F.A.H. agrees that the matter should be turned over to police. Minister Cansfield has called for "…conservation officers to continue with their enforcement and to follow through."

"Underfunding is a long standing issue for the Ministry of Natural Resources. It's critical that the government provide the necessary resources in support of Conservation Officers to enable them to enforce the regulations," Farrant added.

With over 82,000 members and 655 member clubs, the Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters is the leading fishing, hunting and conservation organization in Ontario. For more information visit www.ofah.org.
/For further information: Lezlie Goodwin
Communications Coordinator
705 748-6324/ IN: ENVIRONMENT, FISHERIES, SPORTS

Contact Information

  • Lezlie Goodwin, Comunications Coordinator, Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters
    Primary Phone: 705-748-6324 ext. 270
    Secondary Phone: 705-748-6324 ext. 236
    E-mail: lezlie_goodwin@ofah.org