Unreasonable fishing quotas and the government’s policy of criminalising trawler crews is in danger of destroying coastal communities like Kilmore Quay according to local election candidate Mick Roche. Mr Roche said that despite some tutting and quite reassurances by government spokespeople, the Irish establishment had all but abandoned the likes of Kilmore Quay.
The Sinn Féin candidate said;
“Everything is Kilmore Quay relies on the fishing industry. During the bad weather over the past few weeks, the trawlers haven’t got out which means there’s less work for those employed in the fish factories which in turn means they have less to spend on service industries like the local shops, pubs and transport companies. This influence that the trade has spreads right out into neighbouring areas villages like Bridgetown, Duncormick and Tomhaggard.”
“Knowing the vital importance of the fishing industry to the whole of South Wexford it’s very hard to accept why the community of Kilmore Quay has been abandoned and allowed to face the effects of unreasonable fishing quotas and a deadly policy of criminalising fishing crews who are just doing their jobs alone.”
“Why is it deemed ok for Ireland to have roughly a 7% quota while we have 20% of the EUs fishing waters? Spain has a 34% quota. Kilmore Quay fishing vessels are being threatened by our own navy vessels for fishing in our own waters while Spanish fleets fish with hardly any restrictions.”
“The value of our fisheries for the last thirty years is estimated to have been worth over €210 billion, yet our share was only €17 billion. Clearly we are being screwed. How can Minister Coveney go to Brussels and claim to have led successful negotiations when this is our historical record?”
“The fact is that Kimore Quay will die unless the powers that be, our government, our MEPs, our Senators and our local Councillors stop turning their backs on this issue, stop participating in the criminalisation of our hard working fishing crews and stop accepting that we do not have a right to fish a fair share of our own waters in order to sustain Irish fishing.”