Fishermen plan a demonstration in Vineyard Haven Harbor against federal policies


Fishermen, in a flotilla of their working vessels, plan to protest against federal fisheries’ policies today in Vineyard Haven Harbor. The fishermen say they hope the protest will attract the attention of vacationing President Barack Obama and the associated press corps.

“Hopefully it will get the president’s attention,” Tina Jackson, president of the American Alliance of Fishermen and their Communities, told the Times in a phone conversation Tuesday.

Between 25 and 100 boats from Gloucester, New Bedford, Point Judith. R.I., New York, and New Jersey are expected, according to Ms. Jackson. Fishermen from Maine, New Hampshire. and the Vineyard have been invited to participate also, she said.

The fleet is scheduled to meet in Vineyard Sound at noon and proceed to Vineyard Haven harbor. The coast guard has been informed of the action, Ms. Jackson told the Gloucester Times.

Fishermen are directing their protest at Jane Lubchenco, head of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

“We will be lining up to protest law enforcement abuse of funds, the blatant arrogance and abuse of Dr. Lubchenco and her ENGO-driven (environment non-government organization) agenda…and every other abuse our regulators have punished our industry with over 33 years of corruption and egregious behavior,” Ms. Jackson told the Gloucester Times.

There was a similar protest last year. A line of large fishing boats, with banners flying and horns blaring, cruised through the harbor. On departing, they passed East Chop and, apparently by coincidence, a house facing the water that was being visited by President Obama.