OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Nov. 9, 2016) - The successful implementation of the government's National Oceans Protection Plan will require the reversal of previous government's cuts to scientists.
"We welcome the government's announcement of the National Oceans Protection Plan," said PIPSC President, Debi Daviau. "We strongly believe that hiring at least 150 scientists should be included as a priority to make up for the professional positions that were eliminated at the Canadian Coast Guard and the Department of Fisheries and Oceans in recent years."
The government's initiative will provide $1.5 billion in funding over five years to the Canadian Coast Guard (CCG) and the Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO). This announcement is long overdue and absolutely necessary if there is going to be more shipping traffic in the coming years.
The new spending is especially positive given the legacy of cuts inherited from the last government. PIPSC has been vocal in our opposition to the closing of Coast Guard facilities, diminishing research capacity at science based departments like DFO, and the weakening of emergency preparedness units.
Protecting our coast lines and waterways is of vital importance today and for future generations. In doing so it is essential that the Coast Guard's invaluable front-line response and enforcement function work in a coordinated manner with researchers and scientific regulatory experts at DFO to ensure evidence is driving the decision making process.
"The lifework of these public service professionals is to ensure our coastal communities are safe and our aquatic ecosystems are protected," said Daviau. "If the cuts to the professional positions at DFO and CCG are reversed, this investment will increase capacity in critical areas and assist these professionals in carrying out the organization's mandate."
PIPSC represents approximately 55,000 public sector professionals, including some 15,000 federal government scientists.
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