Thursday, September 29, 2011
the women's party and frankenfish
Sept. 29, 2011
The Women’s Party
Cumberland, BC V0R 1S0
Office of the Prime Minister Phone: 250.400.2444
80 Wellington Street
Ottawa, ON K1A 0A2
Mr. Prime Minister,
It has come to the attention of The Women’s Party (a recently formed group composed of women interested in the health, legal and environmental rights of citizens) that your government has given permission for the rearing and researching of genetically modified salmon in West Vancouver, British Columbia. We are very opposed to hosting genetically modified salmon in our province for research or otherwise. The Women’s Party is very concerned with the food supply and distribution in Canada as well as the source and nature of the nation’s food supply.
The reasons for The Women’s Party opposition to Genetically Modified fish being on Canadian soil are as follows:
1. The public has not been warned or advised or instructed concerning the following:
(a) In a Department of Fisheries and Oceans facility in West Vancouver, scientists are raising and studying Pacific salmon that have been genetically altered. Scientists have developed a method of splicing the genetic structure of Pacific salmon to include genes from Atlantic salmon, genes from eels and rapid growth hormones. The result are enormously altered fish that can grow up to ten times the size of a regular salmon and eats enormous amounts of food (Dr. Bob Devlin, North Shore News, March 25, 2011).
(b) These genetically modified salmon are the very first animal in all of human history to, first, have their genes altered with material from
other animals, and secondly, to have this altered fish patented. There
have been studies published that suggest that should any of these
fish escape, they could mate with wild, unaltered fish
although they are supposed to be sterilized it is not 100%) and run
the risk of escaped breeding which could contaminate large numbers
of wild salmon.
(c) Should escaped breeding occur with these patented fish the corporations who hold the patents could then claim they then own all the salmon within a certain river or coastline.
(d) The Women’s Party claims that raising GM fish in West Vancouver is not only posing unacceptable risks for the natural fish population in British Columbia, but also transgress a moral line. We see, as can most reasonable people, that giving a patent on a living, breathing animal such as a fish that has been genetically altered, is to open the door to patents on most animals of the world which could lead to one or two companies (Monsanto comes to mind) owning all of the salmon, chickens, pigs, cows, horses, etc. in the entire world.
(e) We believe that by transgressing this moral line we will be altering human consciousness to consider all animals as playthings of humans to alter as they like. We consider this to be the most profound disrespect possible to animals.
As the permission for sale of Genetically Modified Salmon to the public is now being debated in the US ( with past employees of Monsanto as advisers urging it’s passing), and we know that once passed in the US there will be much interest from fish farms in British Columbia for these fish, we demand that the Office of the Prime Minister respond to our concerns as soon as possible.
Cc to MP John Weston, Premier Christy Clark, MLA Ralph Sultan
Betty Krawczyk email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Gail Cotter email: email@example.com
Hard copy to follow for The Women’s Party