Local fishermen now certified marine personnelApr 13th, 2012 | By admin | Category: Top Story
The 80-hour training program allowed fishermen to take several training courses in subjects such as water survival, basic fire fighting, first aid and marine security awareness.
Local fishermen participated in an 80-hour certified marine personnel program sponsored by GNO, Inc., Delgado Community College and Coastal Communities Consulting.
A group of St. Bernard fishermen gathered at the Coastal Communities Consulting office for their graduation from the Certified Marine Personnel Program.
This group is the first class to complete this training curriculum that is specifically tailored to the needs of Louisiana fishermen with the goal of making them more competitive in today’s volatile post-oil spill job market. The program was a joint initiative between Coastal Communities Consulting, Greater New Orleans Inc., Delgado Community College and Greater New Orleans Foundation.
“When Coastal Communities Consulting spoke with fishermen about their experiences following the oil spill, what they shared was a new understanding that they are a vital industry to the state,” said Sandy Nguyen from Coastal Communities Consulting.
Nguyen went on to say that before developing the course, CCC conducted focus groups and found that many fishermen wanted to stay on the water and consequently, the organization worked to develop programs that made them more qualified to do that.
The 80-hour training program allowed them to take several training courses in subjects such as water survival, basic firefighting, first aid, maritime security awareness, oil spill response, hazard communication and more, without having to leave the water.
Upon completion of the program, the men were presented with certificates for each course completed and a Certified Marine Personnel flag to be displayed on their boat. Additionally, the newly-certified fishermen will be getting referrals and introductions to future employers from the participating organizations.
“Operating businesses in St. Bernard and Plaquemines Parishes, I’ve witnessed first-hand the toll both Hurricane Katrina and the BP oil spill disaster has had on fishermen in our communities,” said Dale Benoit, Chairman of Greater New Orleans Inc., and co-publisher of The St. Bernard Voice. “It is with pleasure that GNO, Inc. was able to join with Delgado, Coastal Consulting and the Greater New Orleans Foundation in providing an educational resource to benefit them. Hopefully it helps fishermen better provide for their families and allows them to continue contributing to our economy.”