NORTHERN Isles MP Alistair Carmichael is calling on fishermen and representatives of the seafood industries to get in touch with him if they want to raise concern over the impact of Brexit.
The Lib Dem politician has secured a parliamentary debate on 13 July to discuss the consequences of the UK’s departure from the EU, a move that has been lobbied for by fishermen for many years.
Carmichael’s ‘call for evidence’ coincides with yet another video clip allegedly showing how a local whitefish trawler is forced from its traditional fishing grounds by another vessel, north of Shetland.
Carmichael said: “Six months have now passed since we departed from the Common Fisheries Policy, from the European Union and from the frictionless trading relations we had before January.
“In those six months fishermen and the many businesses surrounding the fishing industry have felt let down by a government that promised them a ‘sea of opportunity’ but delivered only red tape and disappointment. It is time to take stock of the situation.
“Every fisherman, every processor and every exporter I have spoken to in the past months has presented me with a litany of frustrations with the government. These run the gamut, from lost markets due to trade barriers, unfulfilled promises over quota uplift or simply lack of access to needed worker support.
“The list is long but ministers have not listened. After six months, the coming debate is a chance to change the narrative – and make our voices heard.
“Any responsible government would conduct a public review of its policy decisions on fishermen. Absent any such accounting, it is up to us to take ministers to task and demand answers on what has become quite a comprehensive range of failures on fishing.
“I am calling for anyone involved in the fishing industry to get in touch about their concerns so that we can make the strongest case possible.”
He can be contacted via his constituency office in Lerwick on 01595 690044 or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
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