The Musqueam band has shipped fish to the Williams Lake band after the Polley Lake disaster – but it’s coming at a cost.
Musqueam Fisheries Manager Richard Sparrow says they’ll still share fish with the Williams Lake band.
This despite being told by the Department of Fisheries and Oceans they’ll add the number of fish to their yearly fishing tally – not Williams Lake’s.
“This is a unique situation, we hope we never see a disaster like this again,” said Sparrow. “You would think that the DFO would recognize that, and show some flexibility, and allow the fishing to take place so we can help the communities that need it.”
Sparrow says their number for social and ceremonial needs is at 75-thousand per year.
That number isn’t enough to support their own band.
The Department of Fisheries and Oceans has yet to respond.
In the meantime, Williams Lake chief Ann Louie says their band is still concerned with fish consumption safety.
“Saying it’s probably going to be safe to be utilize…me personally, I’d be scared to try it and I know our people are all saying the same thing. It’s easy for the company and the government to tell us it’s okay to eat that fish, but our people eat that fish more than anybody else.”