‘Stimulus’ details hot stuff

Maritime lobster fishermen in need of financial help got a lift of another kind when they were directed to a toll-free number that was supposed to detail an aid package but connected them to a sex line instead.

HALIFAX — Maritime lobster fishermen in need of financial help got a lift of another kind when they were directed to a toll-free number that was supposed to detail an aid package but connected them to a sex line instead.

One of the several toll-free information numbers released by Fisheries Minister Gail Shea hooks callers up to a sex line that offers fishermen nary a detail on the lobster stimulus package.

“Hey there hot stuff, I’ve been waiting for your call,” a breathless female voice proffers. “Are you ready for some tantalizing fun?”

The message confounded some fishermen in the region, who have been pressing Ottawa to provide financial support after a dismal season.

“That’s supposed to be the line the information’s on?” said Ken Drake of the P.E.I. Fisherman’s Association. “It don’t sound very good.”

The hotline — one of five for Atlantic Canada and Quebec — is supposed to offer details about a short-term assistance program for lobster fishermen Shea announced this summer.

The department’s four other numbers were working properly.

Scott Cantin, a Fisheries spokesman, said the error occurred when two digits in the phone number were somehow transcribed improperly on the news release and the website.

The number was mistakenly sent out where, with a credit card, callers can be linked to “nasty girls” offering “the hottest action.”

“We’re not exactly sure where the error occurred, but we know it was just a typo and we regret it and we corrected it immediately,” Cantin said.

Cantin said the incorrect number was taken down from the department’s website within 35 minutes but a revised news release was not issued.

He said he didn’t know how many people had called it before the correction was made, adding the department hadn’t received any complaints.

Shea released the spending measures in June in P.E.I., where fishermen had tied up their boats because of prices that had dropped to historically low levels of $3 a pound.

The minister said $15 million will go toward short-term transitional aid for harvesters and will likely be based on a percentage of how much they lost in revenues.

Just Posted

Man causes mischief with axe in Ponoka

Arson and attempted break and enter charges laid

Red Deer RCMP look for fraud suspect

Red Deer RCMP are looking for public assistance to identify a fraud… Continue reading

Blood donations needed in Central Alberta: Canadian Blood Services

357 donors are needed before Aug. 26 at the Red Deer clinic

WATCH: Red Deer man shaves beard for Mustard Seed

‘I have spent 30 years of my life being addicted to both alcohol and drugs’

Calgary Fire Department logs record opioid overdose calls in July

CALGARY — The Calgary Fire Department says there were a record number… Continue reading

RCMP in Burnaby, B.C., say Kinder Morgan protest camp to be dismantled

BURNABY, B.C. — The RCMP arrested protesters when officers enforced a court… Continue reading

Study: Smokers better off quitting, even with weight gain

NEW YORK — If you quit smoking and gain weight, it may… Continue reading

‘Queen of Soul’ Aretha Franklin has died

DETROIT — Aretha Franklin, the long-reigning “Queen of Soul” who sang with… Continue reading

Italy says death toll will mount in Genoa bridge collapse

GENOA, Italy — The death toll from the collapse of a highway… Continue reading

US newspapers to Trump: We’re not enemies of the people

NEW YORK — Newspapers from Maine to Hawaii pushed back against President… Continue reading

Liberal MP Iqra Khalid accused of giving award to purveyor of anti-Semitism

OTTAWA — A Liberal MP is under fire for presenting a ”certificate… Continue reading

Ottawa intervenes to get 13-year-old ball player to Little League World Series

OTTAWA — Thirteen-year-old Dio Gama will get to play baseball in the… Continue reading

Most Read

Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month