First Nations Fisheries

A United Voice for First Nations Fisheries

As per the All Chiefs Task Force recommendation in December 2010, the foremost priority for the FNFC is to coordinate BC First Nations’ political and technical capacity and develop a cohesive and united voice among BC First Nations. The FNFC has established a Declaration and Protocol of Recognition, Support, Cooperation and Coordination with the First Nations Leadership Council, as well as relationship articles with various regional and watershed level First Nations organizations through our Charter process.

The FNFC also aims to demonstrate leadership in building collaborative management approaches with governments, which will help to set the table for understanding and adapting fisheries programs, and developing capacity among First Nations to assume responsibility for fisheries management practices. The ultimate objective is to create a stable environment of self-directed fisheries management and coordinated governance.

Moving forward, the FNFC will continue to engage the Department of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coastguard (DFO) at the operational level and where political space is required, and provide the appropriate briefing notes and technical reports to the First Nations Leadership Council for action at the regional, provincial, national and international levels.

Our priorities will evolve with the operational, political and legislative environment of Pacific fisheries, but our current priorities are guided by the key elements identified in the 2015-2018 FNFC Strategic Plan:

1. Protection of Rights and Sustainable Fisheries
Ensure the vitality and longevity of all fisheries in BC and the communities and people that rely on fish and aquatic resources. Priority access for First Nations is entrenched in case law, and is a foundation to ensure the sustainability of these resources.

2. Governance and Management
Build and foster increased First Nations technical, policy, and science process capacity to meaningfully participate in joint management.

3. Enhanced First Nations Economic Performance
Support First Nations to have enhanced economic development opportunities related to the sustainable use of fisheries and aquatic resources in order to contribute to healthy First Nations

4. Strategic Outreach Through Effective Communication
Effectively communicate with all BC First Nations through clear mechanisms that support the genuine engagement of all communities in BC.