Monday, November 06, 2006

 

Newfoundland Labrador Defence League monthly news letter Oct 06

NLDL Monthly News Letter
Volume one
Issue one
October 31, 2006

Newfoundland and Labrador Defense League (NLDL)


Newfoundland and Labrador – Make it Yours

www.nldl.org

The NLDL is very pleased to present the first edition of our monthly newsletter to the members and friends
of our organization. Please enjoy it and if you have any suggestions for upcoming editions or if you wish
to contact us about the issues facing Newfoundland and Labrador please email: nldl_nl@yahoo.com

Your comments are always welcome.

NLDL in the News:

In an effort to get our name out to the public and to make people aware that we are providing a voice to our
province, the NLDL has aggressively promoted itself over the past weeks. The efforts on this front have
included issuing a press package containing details about our organization, several appearances on VOCM
Open Line programs, an article in the Evening Telegram, an interview segment for CBC Radio’s - The
Morning Show and a letter in the newspaper The Independent.

Federal Government Works to Silence Groups like NLDL:

It seems that our federal government doesn’t appreciate it when members of the people get together and
speak out on issues. Over the past few weeks the NLDL has been working to register with Revenue
Canada as a non-profit organization. This would allow us to provide tax receipts to anyone who wished to
support our activities financially. Unfortunately the government, through Revenue Canada, does not allow
those who speak for political or social change to register for non-profit status.

Quote from Revenue Canada website on Non-profit qualification:

“…Your organization may not espouse, promote, support or seek to achieve any political agenda, party,
purpose or doctrine, nor may your organization seek to persuade the public to adopt a particular social
view or attempt to bring about or oppose changes in the law or government policy.”

There you have it folks. Another case of David meets Goliath. One can only assume the government sees
this as a way to more easily keep the voice of the people silenced. As a result, the NLDL is currently being
funded internally by the leadership team however we hope to begin accepting donations from the public or
members once our web site is fully functional. We may not be able to help you claim you’re a donation
income tax purposes but hopefully the good work do will be recognized and provide its own reward.

Even while we work to improve our financial situation, we don’t see our limited funds as a major problem
but rather as an opportunity. It simply means that we must all challenge ourselves a little harder into
finding ways to promote ourselves at a limited cost. As we like to say, “There are no obstacles, only
opportunities.”



Tackling the Issues:

(For a full transcript of the following items send your request to: nldl_nl@yahoo.com)

October 20, 2006 - the NLDL issues a press release on equalization reforms.

Excerpt: “…During the last election campaign Stephen Harper said he would remove non-renewable
resources from the equalization formula and that no province would be worse off as a result of any
amendments. Both of these promises are now off the table and the potential exists for our province to lose
hundreds of millions of dollars while wealthier provinces receive more than they do today. If implemented,
these amendments would fly in the face of the intent of equalization and would be viewed by the NLDL as
a clear indication of how insignificant and unimportant Newfoundland and Labrador is seen by the
Canadian government…”

October 20, 2006 – the NLDL contacts Fisheries Minister Loyola Hearn to request his backing for a UN
sponsored ban on bottom dragging.
Excerpt: “…According to a report issued by your own department, the use of this type of equipment has a
catastrophic effect on the sea bed and in some cases the recovery of those areas can take centuries if it
occurs at all. The NLDL believes that in order for fish stocks in the North Atlantic to recover it is critical
that the environment in which they live and reproduce be protected...”

Following that letter Mr. Hearn opted not to back the UN plan or the people of Newfoundland and
Labrador. His reasoning was that doing so would affect too many Atlantic Canadian fishers. The NLDL
does buy this argument. The UN ban is intended for the high seas, outside Canada’s 200 mile economic
zone, an area where Canadians do not use bottom dragging gear. We intend to continue lobbying the
Minister of Fisheries on this issue and request that all members do the same by emailing or phoning Mr.
Hearn to express their concerns.

October 23, 2006 – the NLDL issues press release on the Lower Churchill power project.

Excerpt: “…Local use of Lower Churchill power, as a catalyst for industrial growth, is the only approach
that will see our province receive the full benefits of the resource and ensure that those benefits are
understood, shared and felt by the people who own the resources. Our future is dependent on growing the
economy and the best way to foster that growth is by retaining and using our resources to attract industrial
development…”

October 25, 2006 – the NLDL contacted federal Fisheries Minister Loyola Hearn to inquire about
government documents that outline cuts to DFO over the next 3 years. Minister Hearn has publicly denied
that any cuts are planned but internal documents imply that this is not the case. The NLDL has requested
clarification on the issue.

October 30, 2006 -the NLDL followed up on this issue by contacting the Premier and several Cabinet
Ministers, as well as the leader of the opposition, to formally request a full cost-benefit analysis on
retaining power from this project to attract local industrial development.

Added to this we have been working with a local sealing organization on an initiative intended to curtail the
activities of protest groups. We have written several letters to individuals of note who support our views,
including Rick Mercer and Sue Kelland-Dyer. The NLDL leadership believes that it is important for our
organization to open the lines of communication with various groups and individuals so we can work
together in addressing common goals.



Internal Activities:

Since its formation in September the NLDL leadership team has been very busy on a number of fronts
including:


Planning our direction;
Setting up the member’s forum;
Developing internal guidelines and management structures;
Preparing position points on a number of issues;
Planning and developing our website (to go live in November)
Promoting NLDL in the media;
Registering our URL; and
Setting up as a non-profit group


While it’s been a hectic 6 weeks for all of us it’s also been a very rewarding time in many ways. In a little
over a month our group has grown from a mere 7 members (the original team) to 20 or more and there are
new members joining our ranks on an almost daily basis.


A big thank-you to all of you for standing up and making sure your voice is heard!!

Membership Diversity:

Over the past weeks our membership has grown steadily and we’ve attracted some very talented and
diverse individuals, all of whom have one thing in common, they care about the future of Newfoundland
and Labrador.

Our membership now includes people living in various parts of the province, in the Maritimes and even in
Ontario and Quebec.

The abilities our members is something we are really proud of as well. The NLDL now counts among its
skilled members:

IT professionals; A project manager; A linguistics expert; web designers; creative writers; photographers;
research experts; a marketing person; a logistics expert; a biologist; a sub-sea industrial specialist; a youth
development coordinator; entrepreneurs and many more.

Yes indeed, we have some very diverse and talented folks among us who are capable of bring their unique
perspectives to our cause.

Request for volunteers:

Early in our formation the leadership team recognized that there are so many issues facing our province it
would be difficult to address them all. In an effort to ensure that most of our major concerns are given the
attention they deserve, the NLDL issued a request for volunteers on September 27th to any member willing
to “Champion” specific issues of interest. Thus far the call for assistance has not yielded the result we had
hoped for. If you have an area of special interest (economy, culture, out-migration, fisheries etc.) please let
us know. Your voice may help NLDL achieve its goals.



Leadership Election:

In mid October the NLDL issued an announcement that it was accepting nominations for a new leadership
team member. The executive of the NLDL is made up of 7 members and unfortunately one of our
founders, while still an active participant in the group, has had to give up his leadership role for personal
reasons. Once all nominations are in, we plan to hold an election on this issue so if you or someone you
know is interested in joining the leadership team and helping to shape the direction of NLDL make sure
you let us know.

The NLDL was formed in 2006 and is a non-profit organization made up of Newfoundlanders and Labradorians from
across Canada and around the world. The NLDL is dedicated to the planning, development and promotion of
initiatives for the empowerment of the Newfoundland and Labrador people. The NLDL is not affiliated with, or funded
by, any political party.

“NLDL”, “Newfoundland and Labrador Defense League”, and the tri-colour logo are the sole property of the
Newfoundland and Labrador Defense League and may not be used without the express written permission of
the organization.
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