Last year, Sea Shepherd Conservation Society Captain Paul Watson refused to speak at the Canadian Green Party Convention because the Green Party had taken a position in support of the annual slaughter of 350,000 harp and hood seals.
Captain Watson was one of the original members of the Green Party in Canada. He ran twice for Member of Parliament for Vancouver Centre, once for Vancouver Parks Board, and once for Mayor of Vancouver. Each time he received the largest number of votes for any Green Party candidate running.
This month, Captain Watson received a letter from Don Roebuck of the Green Party of Canada which included the new Green Party policy on the seal hunt.
The Green Party changed its position thanks to Newfoundland anti-sealing activist Rebecca Aldworth who attended the Green Party Convention in August 2004. She presented a video and talked with delegates.
In the vote that followed, the Green Party condemned the hunt by a vote of 98 to 7 becoming the first Canadian political party to oppose the seal slaughter.
The Newfoundland delegates have vowed to fight this new policy at the 2005 convention.
This means that now, Canadians do have an alternative if they choose to not support a political party that endorses the horrific mass slaughter of seals.
Canada intends to slaughter another 350,000+ seals in March and April 2005. Sea Shepherd ship Farley Mowat will be at the seal hunt this year to oppose the killing.
This is the official Green Party Position:
G04-p11 - Atlantic Seal Hunt
Whereas the Atlantic seal hunt is characterized by extreme brutality; and
Whereas this extreme brutality has been thoroughly documented, and has received extensive coverage in the print and electronic media in Canada and internationally; and
Whereas, according to an Angus Reid poll conducted in July, 1997, the majority of Canadians are opposed to the commercial seal hunt, and
Whereas many Green Party members and supporters have been appalled to learn that the Green Party of Canada has adopted a resolution in support of the seal hunt; and
Whereas the Green Party of Canada's support of the seal hunt will be a source of embarrassment to the Party in upcoming federal elections; and
Whereas, as a result of having come out in support of the seal hunt, the Green Party of Canada will lose more votes than it gains; therefore
Be it resolved that the Green Party of Canada rescind the policy resolution on the seal hunt (referred to in that resolution as the seal "harvest" and the seal "fishery") that it adopted at its convention held in Montreal in August, 2002.
Submitted by: Don Roebuck
Endorsers: Jim Harris, Frank de Jong, Peter Elgie, Zora Ariel, Rob Newman, Beth MacKinnon, Jessica Fracassi, Ian Whyte, Gabriel Draven, Mike Pilling.