Safari Club International has thrown its support behind the recent decision by President Trump and Secretary Zinke to protect access to public lands in Utah, following a review of 27 National Monuments. The President announced on Tuesday that he would reduce the size of Bears Ears and the Grand Staircase Escalante National Monuments in Utah.
“We at Safari Club International (SCI) applaud the decision of President Trump and Secretary Zinke to protect access to millions of acres of public land in Utah. We are thankful that this administration — unlike the previous — conducted a thorough review of these monuments, and listened to the input of hunters and sportsmen when making this important decision. With this announcement, the Trump Administration is affirming the benefit of traditional land uses, such as hunting and recreational shooting, to our nation’s resource management,” said SCI President Paul Babaz.
The creation of a National Monument does not necessarily end hunting on the federal lands involved. Monument designation, however, can limit hunting opportunities and restrict access to hunting opportunities. On more than one occasion, the creation of a National Monument has temporarily or permanently put an end to long-standing hunting opportunities. Roads that provided access to hunting opportunities have been closed, for example.
The process has not always included the hunting community to help decide if and how hunting will continue on the new Monument lands. The decision by the President and the Secretary recognizes the need to involve all stakeholders in the process for establishing Monuments and regulating their use. SCI will work with the Administration to help protect the existing hunting opportunities on the lands within and near the Bears Ears and Grand Staircase Escalante Monuments.