2012/700 Professional Fishing Certificate – A CRC legacy. Phase 1 – industry demand
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2012/700 Professional Fishing Certificate – A CRC legacy. Phase 1 – industry demand


By Richard Stevens



Three hundred fishermen across the majority of West Australian fisheries surveyed to help identify the core competencies considered appropriate for a Professional Fisherman’s Certificate.


Fishermen were interviewed in the field and then completed an online survey. Respondents were asked to rank in order of importance core units and competencies within the Certificate 2, 3, & 4 Fishing Operations and the Diploma of Marine Studies they thought were important to include in a Professional Fisherman’s Certificate. Interestingly most respondents did not value competencies that would aim to address some of the public perception issues and put more value on improving and developing vessel and deck skills, although deckhands were more likely to see the benefit of including public perception issues in the certificate. There was considerable support to including units from the current maritime training package STCW 95 course.


While there was almost unanimous in principle support for a Professional Fisherman’s Certificate, only 25% of fishermen indicated they would be willing to undertake further training or assessment to obtain certification. Most respondents felt the certificate should be aimed towards deckhands while those deckhands interviewed felt skippers would also benefit. Most skippers thought they already had experience on-the-job and did not see the value for them, unless they received the certificate through “grandfathering”.