The Canadian Sealers Association (CSA) was formed in 1982 in response to negative publicity against the sealing industry by some animal rights groups. Based in Atlantic Canada it was designed to speak on behalf of sealers primarily in Newfoundland, the Quebec North Shore and the Magdalen Islands. Its primary focus was to develop an educational and public awareness campaign to counter act the animal rights groups. The CSA represents more than 6,000 sealers who are professional fishers, licensed by the government of Canada. The Association has a volunteer Board of Directors elected from the general membership at an Annual General Meeting. An Executive Committee of the Board provides direction to the Executive Director and support staff at its provincial office.