The NSFSC provides industry with the support needed to improve capacity and training in Nova Scotia. Through initiatives such as the development of a registration and certification system, the re-establishment of a safety culture (Fishing Safety Now), and being able to provide input into provincial training and education curricula we are able to make advancements for the betterment of the industry. Our work has resulted in advances in human resource capacity, increased industry competitiveness and productivity, and better preparation for the labour market challenges that lie ahead.

Since the early 2000’s the NSFSC has had a keen interest in improving safety in the fishing industry. In the early years, the NSFSC conducted baseline information on accidents and injuries in the harvesting, seafood processing and aquaculture sectors. From there safety handbooks were developed, along with other supports to help industry address its safety challenges.

The need for improvements in safety required dedicated attention to it and in 2010, the NSFSC launched the Fisheries Safety Association of Nova Scotia. The establishment of the safety association would prove to be beneficial to industry by having dedicated resources to address the issue.

In June 2015, the NS Fisheries Sector Council, in partnership with the Fisheries Safety Association of Nova Scotia, Workers’ Compensation Board of Nova Scotia and the NS Department of Labour and Advanced Education launched Fishing Safety Now – a 5-year plan to improve safety in the fishing industry. Since 2014, this group has been working together to develop the plan by and for Nova Scotia’s fishing industry. The plan outlined 33 recommendations to improve safety and, ultimately, save lives. The Nova Scotia Fisheries Sector Council and Fisheries Safety Association of Nova Scotia have taken the lead on implementing the recommendations. The need for change is upon the industry. Fish Harvesters are motivated to make those changes and we have already seen the success of our efforts. With the right strategy in place, the NSFSC will lead real change in the industry.

Current Projects:

  • Are you READY program
  • Fishing Safety Now
  • Safety Related tool and resources – for copies of the following items please contact our office:
    • On-board Familiarization and Training Checklist
    • OHS Requirements – What fishermen need to know under the Occupational Health and Safety Act and Regulations
    • Fishing Vessel Safety Equipment Charts
    • Wheelhouse Safety Logbook
    • Safety Signs – PFD’s must be worn, no cell phones

Past Projects:

  • Exploring issues around escalating worker’s compensation rates in the processing sector, find a solution to reduce rates
  • Development of a Safety Handbook – “Fish Safe”
  • Baseline study of Accidents and Injuries in the Harvesting and Aquaculture Sector.
  • Seafood Processing Safety Handbook
  • Establishment of Fisheries Safety Association of Nova Scotia

If you would like further information on these projects/activities, feel free to contact us at

Adequate training and ongoing skills development are key to making a sector productive and competitive. Increasing global competition has created the need for Nova Scotia fisheries companies to find ways to increase productivity and value. The NSFSC has contributed to this effort by designing and delivering training programs that have led directly to a more productive fishery.

Current Projects:

  • Leadership Recruitment
  • Strategy to Improving Marketing and Quality of Seafood Products
  • HR Workbook training modules
  • Transport Canada Ad Hoc Committee – Marine Personnel Regulations
  • NSCC – Program Advisory Committee – Fisheries Training

The NSFSC has worked hard to increase the level of professionalism in Nova Scotia’s fisheries sector. As coordinator for the Professionalization Program in the Scotia Fundy (Maritimes) Region, we assisted industry in developing strategies for a more professional industry. With strong industry involvement, we were able to assist in the formation of the Scotia Fundy Professional Fishermen’s Registration and Training Association. From there, the Fish Harvester Registration and Certification Board Act was established (2012) and the Fish Harvester Registration and Certification Board of Nova Scotia is at the final stages of establishment. Future action will involve coordinating the establishment and implementation of the strategy that has been put forward to both levels of government. We will facilitate the development of a professionalization program for fish harvesters that will increase capacity in the industry, improve the image of the industry and build a training and safety culture amongst fish harvesters.

For further information, please go directly to the Fish Harvesters Registration and Certification Board of Nova Scotia site

If you would like further information on these projects/activities, feel free to contact us at