The Skeena Fisheries Commission was established in 1990 with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) by the five First Nations in the watershed—the Tsimshian, Gitxsan, Gitanyow, Wet’suwet’en, and Lake Babine Nations.
Our membership has evolved over the years, and currently includes the Gitxsan, Gitanyow, and Wet’suwet’en Nations.
Our Technical Committee is open to all First Nations with an interest in the conservation, protection, and management of Skeena fish populations and habitat.
To protect our right to fish, which is protected by the Laws of our Member Nations.
We support our Member Nations’ implementation of their inherent rights and responsibilities to conserve, protect, manage, and sustainably harvest fish and aquatic resources within their territories. We also support effective participation and meaningful engagement in fisheries policy and management processes that impact Skeena fish populations and habitat.
To manage fisheries in the Skeena and Nass River watersheds according to the Laws of our Member Nations.
Resource management agencies must align their work with our long-standing inherent Indigenous rights and responsibilities, and must respect our Laws concerning our fish:
The fish that swim through our territories are sacred.
Our deep, long-standing relationship with the fish is also sacred.
The fish must be preserved for all future generations.
Our long-term goal is fish for future generations on our terms. We work directly with government agencies on fisheries science, management, and policy initiatives to achieve this goal for all future generations.
Our core programs are funded primarily through an Aboriginal Aquatic Resources and Oceans Management (AAROM) agreement with Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO). Project funding comes from a wide variety of other available sources.
Funding from DFO’s Pacific Integrated Commercial Fisheries Initiative (PICFI) is provided to host and support the PICFI Business Development Team, which provides advisory services to Indigenous Commercial Fishing Enterprises (CFEs) and fosters First Nations economic development through aquatic and coastal industries.