Dear Governor Inslee,
Thank you for your announcement reopening most fishing and hunting in Washington starting May 5.
That provides welcome relief about when we can get back to some of our favorite spring activities. However, and while in no way do we wish to risk public health, we call on you to help fast track reinstating ocean fishing to, at the very least, private boats by working with coastal communities to ensure that that is possible in a safe manner.
Our state – with its variety of fish and wildlife and vast array of state lands and water access sites – is one of the best places in the U.S. to enjoy time in the outdoors, and the Pacific is one of its richest fisheries.
Fishing not only provides positive – and much-needed – mental health benefits, but also sustenance for many families who count on being able to fill their freezer against hard times with plentiful catches. There are growing concerns about the stability of our food chain.
On behalf of our readership and our advertisers, we urge you to continue reopening Washington fishing in a systematic way that will allow sportsmen and -women to recreate safely, minimize the risk of transmitting Covid-19, and help those in need put food on their table.
We understand the worry that travel across the state from hard hit areas could impact less-prepared counties. For our part, we promise to help remind fellow hunters and anglers about social distancing requirements that will keep one another safe, as well as urge everyone to safely practice these beloved activities in a way that won’t endanger others’ health or encourage travel far from home.
Andy Walgamott, Editor