Ban the Import of Shark Fins Across Canada, Support Bill S-238!
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Every year, up to 73 million sharks are killed for their fins, threatening one-third of open ocean sharks with extinction. Finning is incredibly inhumane, as the sharks are typically thrown back into the water to drown. Sharks are disappearing at an alarming rate, and if they go extinct the ecological consequences would be devastating. As an apex predator, sharks hold the oceans in balance and their extinction would have significant effects on every species below them.
The practice of finning was brought to light by Rob Stewart, a Canadian biologist and filmmaker who dedicated his life to the conservation of sharks and our oceans. Since the release of his award winning documentary Sharkwater in 2006, many states and municipal governments including Hawaii, Guam, Washington State, Oregon and California – representing over 47 million people have introduced or proposed bans on the trade and consumption of shark fins, with representatives in mainland China and Indonesia initiating bans and restrictions as well. A Canadian ban on the importation of shark fins would have a significant impact on the shark fin industry and would reduce the demand for shark fin imports and subsequently the practice of shark finning.
Senator Michael MacDonald introduced Bill S-238 “The Ban on Shark Fin Importation Act” on April 11, 2017. If passed, Bill S-238 will prohibit shark finning and ban the importation of shark fins that have been harvested through finning nation-wide!
To make sure Bill S-238 passes, we need your help! We’re calling for the following actions and hope you’ll take a moment to sign and show your support:
- Urge your local representative to support Senator MacDonald’s Bill S-238. Take a moment to send an email, a message over social media, a letter or a phone call.
- We’re calling on cities all across Canada to join us in supporting Bill S-238! On April 27, 2017 a motion will be introduced by Toronto City Councillors Kristyn Wong-Tam & Glenn De Baeremaeker. We are hopeful that the motion will pass, and we’d like to see other cities across Canada stand with Toronto!
- We are also calling on the province of Ontario take a stand and enact their own ban on the importation of shark fins.
Please pledge your support to end the import of shark fins in Canada! The following petition will be used to show the federal government that Canadians want to see this done:
We, the undersigned residents of Canada, draw the attention of the House to the following:
THAT, each year up to 73 million sharks are killed primarily for their fins, threatening open ocean sharks with extinction. And that the fins are used primarily for the production of shark fin soup, which has now been banned from state banquets in China out of recognition of the ecological disaster that accompanies this destructive trade. And that shark finning is a wasteful, inhumane practice that involves cutting off a shark’s fins and then throwing the still - live shark back overboard to drown or bleed to death. And that jurisdictions such as the State of California and the State of Washington, have proposed bans on the trade and consumption of shark fins.
THEREFORE we call upon Parliament to support Senate Bill S-238 “The Ban on Shark Fin Importation Act” so that Canada can take its place in the front rank of nations determined to save the world’s sharks and safeguard our oceans’ ecosystems for generations to come.
Rob Stewart was a Canadian photographer, filmmaker and conservationist. He produced the award-winning 2006 documentary Sharkwater, a film that brought attention to the devastation caused by the shark fin industry and the destruction of ocean ecosystems. He died in January 2017, while filming Sharkwater: Extinction, the sequel to Sharkwater. Please help us keep his legacy alive.
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