19 August 2013
Public pressure can force snapper flip-flop
The government must abandon its plans to reduce recreational snapper catch limits, while leaving commercial catches
unchanged, Labour Leader David Shearer says.
“Catching a feed of snapper for the family is a Kiwi birth right. The Government has sided with big commercial interests
over the rights of every New Zealander to go out and fish. It has badly under estimated how strongly people feel about
“Everyone agrees we need to ensure snapper stocks are sustainable, but if catches need to be reduced to protect the
fishery commercial operators should share the pain.
“This is a basic issue of fairness. As a weekend fisherman myself, I don’t see why recreational fishers should bear the
brunt of catch reductions.
“Feelings are running high at public meetings we have attended on the issue. And if the government is getting anything
like the same feedback as the Labour Party, it will be throwing its proposals overboard. We certainly will if they are
in place when we come into office.
“We’ve received about 30,000 emails about the issue and already have more than 7,500 names on our petition against the
“This week is the last chance for public submissions on the proposed new rules for the snapper fishery covering the top
half of the east coast of the North Island. I urge people to make their voices heard.
“Make no mistake – the public backlash can force John Key and his ministers to listen. It is not too late to make
National treat recreational fishers fairly,” says David Shearer.