Eliminating over 60 percent of fishermen

We need your help today to stop the “pilot” commercial snapper-grouper catch share program being proposed by two South Atlantic Fishery Management Council members: Vice Chair Charlie Phillips and Chris Conklin, both commercial snapper-grouper fleet owners and dealers.

Incredibly, Chris, in a recent email about this pilot program that was publicly posted on a fishing forum, effectively said he wants to get rid of 60 percent of commercial snapper-grouper fishermen, who he calls “part timers,” so the big snapper-grouper players will benefit.

From his email:

“Let's keep in mind that over 60% of these permits are being leased out to part timers that do not rely on commercial snapper grouper fishing as their primary source of income, thus catching a large portion of the quota the full time career fisherman that rely on the fishery to support their families.”

Most full time career commercial and for-hire fishermen in the South Atlantic make a living by participating in multiple fisheries, so they could be considered part timers in many fisheries. But they are full time career fishermen, of which snapper-grouper is just one vital income source.

Imagine eliminating 60 percent of commercial snapper-grouper fishermen and the economic devastation that would inflict on families and fishing communities. That’s what catch shares do.

Click here for the letter we sent to these SAFMC members asking them to stop.

If you haven’t already done so, please contact these SAFMC catch share ringleaders today and tell them to stop trying to put fishermen out of business by pushing unwanted catch shares:

Vice Chair Charlie Phillips -- [email protected] or 912-832-4423
Chris Conklin -- [email protected] or 843-543-3833

Thank you in advance for your efforts!

Tom Swatzel
Executive Director
Council for Sustainable Fishing

P.S. The Council for Sustainable Fishing is a non-profit advocacy group that relies on membership dues to operate. Please help us continue our fight for fishermen and fishing communities by clicking here and joining today. Thank You!

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