Chilliwack-Hope MP Mark Strahl was one of five Conservative MPs to make the shadow cabinet picked by interim leader of the Official Opposition, Rona Ambrose.
Strahl was named Opposition critic for Fisheries and Oceans, and the Coast Guard last week.
“I think it was a good fit for me, and for the MP of this riding, particularly with the Fraser River running through it,” said Strahl. “Plus we’re close to the Pacific Coast.”
Fishing and aboriginal issues intersected quite a lot, he noted, in his previous role as parliamentary secretary for Aboriginal Affairs.
“My experience in that role will serve me well,” Strahl said.
He looks forward to the new role.
“It’s a great opportunity and I was pleased to get the call.”
In terms of priorities, it should be on conservation for DFO, Strahl said.
“We want our precious salmon resource to be there for our children and grandchildren,” he said.
It’s key for First Nations, and for local businesses that depend on the recreational fishing sector, particularly the sockeye runs.
But the priority should also be ensuring that DFO operates with “common sense,” concentrating more on the Fraser River than farmers’ ditches in the Fraser Valley, for example, he said.