Marine Scotland: Spotlight on Fishermen’s Mission
Read an excerpt of Marine Scotland’s Article below:
March 18, 2021 by Marine Scotland Communications
‘Don’t struggle in silence’ is the message from the chief executive of a charity that has seen an influx in calls and requests from fishers impacted by Coronavirus (COVID-19) and the EU Exit over the last year.
The Fishermen’s Mission, which provides emergency support as well as practical, financial, spiritual and emotional care to active or retired fishermen and their families, received around 50% more calls in the first months of 2021 than in the same period in 2020.
In recognition of the hardship faced by people working in the sector at this time, the Scottish Government awarded up to £300,000 to the Fishermen’s Mission in February, making it the first Government in the UK to provide this type of welfare support to specifically mitigate the effects of both COVID-19 and the end of the post-EU Exit transition period.
Chief executive David Dickens said:
“At the first lockdown last year when there was the collapse of markets which affected everyone from the crab and lobster guys, to the mussel growers and prawn fishermen, we had a big peak in demand, well in excess of what we’d normally expect in the March to May timeframe.
“As restrictions lifted, people were able to get back out and fish a bit and the markets opened up a bit but then there was the run of poor weather in the autumn, and of course we went straight back down to another lockdown followed by EU Exit, and months on we’re finding the markets are still suppressed.