While tensions are high between sport fishers and the Kitsumkalum First Nation over the band’s gillnets early this week, the RCMP have only been called once to settle a dispute on the Skeena River.
They were called out at 2 p.m. on Monday, July 31, about an argument between sport fishers and food fishers, said RCMP media relations officer Const. Crystal Evelyn.
“It was just people disagreeing, people arguing regarding the placement of equipment in the river,” said Const. Evelyn, adding that police responded as peacekeepers with officials from the federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO).
“We went just to stand by as peacekeepers and make sure that nothing did get out of hand,” said Evelyn.
“Police and DFO spoke to those involved, both on shore and in the water, and helped everyone reach a resolution to the misunderstanding.”
The conflict happened on the Skeena River near the Kalum River, and Evelyn said there were people both in boats and on the shore involved.
Evelyn said they were able to reach a resolution, and no charges were involved.
No other issues have been reported to police since the Kitsumkalum requested the recreational fishery closure which started Sunday and ends Wednesday, Aug. 2.