Letters: Fraser River anglers deserve to be allowed to fish

The closure of the Fraser River to recreational salmon fishing represents a very significant hardship to the many businesses that are dependent on this fishery. It’s estimated that the fishery in years of stock abundance exceeds $100 million in revenues to local communities. Equally important is the loss of family opportunities to enjoy this priceless Canadian heritage.

The Fraser River Sportfishing Alliance recognizes and supports conservation concerns for chinook and sockeye stocks. We also recognize the constitutional priorities of First Nations. But we demand that our rights as Canadian citizens be recognized and that our fisheries be opened immediately, as other priorities have been addressed and plentiful stocks of pink salmon are now entering the system.

Continued erosion of our fishing opportunities is a great concern, jeopardizing the fishing future for our children and grandchildren. This heritage must be preserved.

Rod Clapton, chairman, Fraser River Sportfishing Alliance

More planning needed

My friends and I are having a difficult time understanding how city and provincial planners function. One question that usually comes up is whether planners ever get together to map out a direction for the future of the region, including planning for hospital growth. Surely, as the population grows so should planning include important services like hospitals, fire and police protection, and so on.
All we hear and see are more cranes dotting the skyline. Are we expected to applaud all this growth when other important factors like public services are kept a hidden mystery?

The move of St. Paul’s Hospital in Vancouver is an example of how long it takes to make important decisions that ultimately add greater cost. A new Burnaby Hospital has taken 40 years to be updated for $622 million and where will it be located? Probably on the existing parking lot and we all know Burnaby’s population is now nearing a quarter-million people.

Brian Robinson, Coquitlam

Welcome to Hotel Canada

Who can blame the illegal refugee claimants for breaking Canadian laws and jumping the immigration queue when there is no personal risk and the immediate rewards are free accommodation, free health care, free social assistance and free education for their children? Sure there is uncertainty about what will happen in the future, but the wheels of government bureaucracy grind away so slowly.

You would think the owners of Hotel Canada would insist that non-persecuted clients must book ahead or at the very least come through the front door, but the staff seem content to treat backdoor gatecrashers with the same or even more deference than that given to clients who follow the official rules.

Even though there are over half-a-billion people (many of them living in politically unstable countries) below the U.S.’s southern border, nobody at Hotel Canada seems concerned that their hotel’s nonchalant access policy will be abused.

In Europe, people-smuggling and human-trafficking are out of control, which has added fuel to the right-wing populist movements.

Lloyd Atkins, Vernon

Simple solution to cigarettes

With regard to recent letters commenting on the forest-fire risk posed by the lack of ashtrays in modern cars, I propose a simple solution:

Pour about an inch of water in the bottom of an empty pop can and place it in your vehicle’s cupholder. Dispose of cigarette butt in the can. Discard the can from time-to-time safely in the garbage.

Doug Wilson, North Vancouver



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