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Coronavirus: ASA urges US governors to keep fishing opportunities open

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The ASA has written to the 50 US governors asking them to keep fishing opportunities and businesses open where possible during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The trade body that represents recreational fishing in the US has written to the country’s 50 governors requesting that they keep angling opportunities and businesses open as much as possible during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mike Leonard, Vice President of Government Affairs at the American Sportfishing Association (ASA), said: “In no way do we want to stand in the way of the efforts of states to limit the spread of COVID-19 and we recognise that in certain cases fishing access restrictions are warranted.

“ASA believes that recreational fishing should be promoted as a safe outdoors activity compatible with physical distancing guidelines.

“Given that recreational fishing provides health and benefits associated with being outdoors, and a source of food for many individuals, we support state efforts to maintain fishing opportunities while keeping physical distance, and to allow sportfishing businesses to stay open as much as possible.”

ASA added that it is monitoring the responses of state parks and fisheries agencies to the COVID-19 pandemic, providing updates on its website through an interactive map. In addition, ASA is working with states to have recreational fishing-related businesses to be considered ‘essential’ and therefore allowed to remain open in some form to help facilitate fishing opportunities for the public.

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