The Newfoundland and Labrador Fish Harvesting Safety Association (NL-FHSA) is an industry-driven, not-for-profit organization established to lead the promotion of safety education and awareness initiatives in the harvesting sector of the provincial commercial fishing industry.  


The establishment of the Association, in 2012, represents a tremendous co-operative effort from the fish harvesting sector and aims to have a genuine positive impact on the safety of the men and women who fish for a living in Newfoundland and Labrador. 


The governance structure is highly inclusive with strong industry representation, including owner/operator and crew members across all three fleet sectors.  This provides the opportunity for diverse viewpoints and comprehensive insight into the respective safety concerns.


Improving safety in any environment can be a challenge.  Improving safety for those who labour on a moving platform in the North Atlantic is an extreme challenge, and demands a fervent and industry-driven effort.  To this end, the NL-FHSA engages with all fish harvesters – both owner/operators and crew members – across all fleet sectors, and in collaboration with other industry stakeholders, to utilize the vast expertise across the sector to improve upon current safety practices.



The NL-FHSA inclusive Board structure reflects an industry-driven approach to improving health and safety in the commercial fish harvesting sector.  With the majority representation from owner/operators and crewmembers, fish harvesters' experience and expertise is reflected in defining the problems, the process for decision-making, and decision outcomes.


Industry Board Membership is provided for on the basis of common interest to the following groups:

Crewmember/Deckhand Near Shore Fishing Vessels (1 Director)

Crewmember/Deckhand Fishing Vessels 40-65 Foot (1 Director)

Crewmember/Deckhand -Offshore Fishing Vessels (1 Director)

Owner/Operator Nearshore Fishing Vessels (1 Director)

Owner/Operator Fishing Vessels 40-65 Foot (1 Director)

Owner/Operator Offshore Fishing Vessels (1 Director)                     

Seafood Processors (2 Directors)

Aboriginal/First Nations/Metis Fish Harvesters (1 Director)

PFHCB (1 Director)

FFAW-Unifor (1 Director)


  • Nancy Bowers, Fish Harvester (under 40' fleet)

  • Ivan Lear, Owner / Operator (40'-65' fleet)

  • Mike Noonan, Fish Harvester (40'-65' fleet)

  • Jack Greenham - Owner/Operator (under 40' fleet)

  • Vacant - Crew (offshore)

  • Wade Short, Owner Operator (offshore)

  • Karen Decker - Processor

  • Vacant - Processor

  • Brian Dicks, Aboriginal/First Nations/Metis Fish Harvesters

  • Mark Dolomount, PFHCB

  • David Decker, FFAW-Unifor



  • Charles Coady, Workplace NL

  • Derrick Lockyer, Department of Fisheries, Forestry, and Agriculture

  • Bill HyndNewfoundland and Labrador Federation of Labour, Sector Advisor

  • Andrew PikeNewfoundland and Labrador Employers' Council - Sector Advisor


In addition to the Board of Directors, the Association is supported by an Advisory Committee of industry organizations with an expressed interest and expertise in fishing-related safety.  The following organizations are represented and have appointed their respective representatives:


  • Fish Food and Allied Workers/Unifor - David Decker, Secretary-Treasurer

  • Professional Fish Harvesters Certification Board - Mark Dolomount, Executive Director

  • OHS Division, Service NL – Loyola Power, Director

  • SafetyNet, MUN – Dr. Barb Neis, Senior Research Associate

  • Marine Institute, MUN (MI) – Vacant

  • Transport Canada – Clement Murphy, Manager of Compliance and Enforcement

  • Canadian Coast Guard – Harvey Vardy, Superintendent Search and Rescue Atlantic Region

  • Department of Fisheries and Oceans – Brooks Pilgrim, Senior Commercial Analyst, Strategic Services Branch

  • Department of Fisheries and Land Resources - Vacant

  • Newfoundland and Labrador Federation of Labour - Bill Hynd, Sector Advisor

  • Newfoundland and Labrador Employers' Council - Andrew Pike, Sector Advisor



To help reach the goal of reducing the human and financial costs of workplace injuries and accidents, the NL-FHSA applies the following statements.  These statements are current and approved by the Associations’ Board of Directions.



A fish harvesting sector in which the necessary skills, knowledge, technology, commitment, and support enables professional fish harvesters to work safely and successfully without occupational injury, illness, or fatality.



To lead the Newfoundland and Labrador fish harvesting sector in the promotion and development of a positive industry-wide safety culture, and to create added value for members through the identification and coordination of relevant, accessible, timely, and cost-effective safety education and resources.



To advance safety through an industry-led and industry-driven approach.


There is nothing more important than returning home safe and healthy to loved ones at the end of the workday.  To help reach the goal of reducing the human and financial costs of workplace injuries and accidents, the NL-FHSA applies the following mandate, goals, and strategies.



  • Create added value for harvesters through the identification and coordination of timely, accessible, affordable, and relevant safety education and resources;

  • To lead the NL harvesting sector in the promotion and development of a positive industry-wide safety culture;

  • Promote best practices for safety on-board fishing vessels through education and awareness initiatives;

  • Support and promote research on fishing industry safety; and

  • Provide advice to the provincial and federal levels of government on health and safety issues in the fishing industry.



  • Save lives and reduce occupational injury, illness, and disease;

  • Improve the industry's safety culture;

  • Promote and share industry best practices;

  • Facilitate an effective stakeholder consultation mechanism and cooperative approach to safety;

  • Empower fish harvesters through knowledge transfer;

  • Facilitate the provision of accessible, affordable, and relevant safety education and resources; and Enhance safety through advances in research and development.






NLFHSA 2020 Annual Report - Coming Soon