Auxiliary adds voice to search and rescue closure
Dear Prime Minister,
It has recently come to our attention that the Maritime Rescue Sub-Centre, a division of the Search and Rescue Department of the Canadian Coast Guard in NL Region, has been scheduled to close and services moved to Halifax.
On behalf of the executive committee, board of directors, and entire membership of the Canadian Coast Guard Auxiliary in NL Region, we would like to strongly express our opposition to this decision and urge you to reconsider.
The CCGA (NL) region, on an annual basis, prosecutes approximately 30 per cent of all regional search and rescue incidents. We feel that the co-ordination of these efforts would be drastically affected if the Maritime Rescue Sub-Centre were to relo- cate to Halifax.
We would be losing the local knowledge of our search and rescue co-ordinators and the personal aspect of dealing with our volunteers. Due to the ever-changing fisheries climate, our membership changes on a continual basis. Having the Maritime Rescue Sub-Centre relocated will impact our ability to effectively save lives.
This decision by the minister was based on incomplete information provided by senior officials.
We feel the relocation of the Maritime Rescue Sub-Centre does not justify the end resultant cost saving measures.
The search and rescue system needs to be increased in this region, instead of decreased.
We strongly urge you to reconsider your decision.
Winston Pitcher President, Canadian Coast Guard
Auxiliary (NL) Inc.