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Protesters break into DFO building on White Hills


Updated: St. John's, NL —Protesters who broke into the Ocean Fisheries Centre earlier today are now meeting with senior DFO officials in the cafeteria at the Ocean Fisheries Centre on White Hills.

The door of the building was kicked in.

A rowdy group of fish harvesters strode through the corridors after beating in the main doors, and apparently broke through more security doors inside the building calling out for particular DFO employees.

Jan Woodford, regional director for DFO, spoke to media, saying in her 18 years on the job with DFO, she’s never had such a frightening encounter.

Woodford said senior officials are meeting with fisherman, and a discussing a tentative agreement, but no word on details was available. She said the issue is a top priority.

No word has been released on possible charges against the protesters.

A small group of harvesters who left the building for a quick smoke break said their fishery is a write-off, and some resolution must be found.

The group, about 50 strong, showed up at the building today around 9:30 a.m. to protest the recent 63 per cent reduction in shrimp quotas in Area 6. The protest quickly escalated and a portion of the inside door was kicked in and some of the protesters gained access to the building.

Royal Newfoundland Constabulary was called to the site and members of the media are still not being permitted inside the building. About four RNC vehicles at the scene.

A source inside the DFO says that all employees inside have been asked to remain in their offices with doors locked and to avoid the cafeteria where the meeting is said to be taking place.

 

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ST. JOHN'S, N.L. — A group of fishermen are meeting with DFO officials at the Ocean Fisheries Centre on White Hills at this hour.

The group, about 50 strong, showed up at the building today around 9:30 a.m. to protest the recent 63 per cent reduction in shrimp quotas in Area 6.

The protest quickly escalated and a portion of the inside door was kicked in and some of the protesters gained access to the building. They are now in the cafeteria waiting to speak with officials, and reports say they won’t leave until someone speaks with them.

Royal Newfoundland Constabulary was called to the site and members of the media are not being permitted inside the building. About four RNC vehicles are at the scene, and about a dozen constabulary officers.

A source inside the DFO says that all employees inside have been asked to remain in their offices with doors locked and to avoid the cafeteria where the meeting is said to be taking place.

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