Mining (in)justice: at home and abroad is a conference on the Canadian mining industry (including Tar Sands) set to take place in Toronto on the weekend of May 7-9, 2010. It will feature leaders in movements against Canadian mining companies both within and outside of Canada and provide space for growing our own movements in alliance with communities impacted by this industry.
WHAT: Conference on the Canadian Mining Industry
WHERE: Earth Sciences Building, University of Toronto (map)
WHEN: May 7-9, 2010
WHO: Impacted communities are coming from all over the world and within Canada. Hear speakers from Honduras, Guatemala, Carrier Sekani First Nation, Papua New Guinea, El Salvador, Ardoch Algonquin, Northern Ontario, Fort Chipewan, Mexico and more! Clayton Thomas Muller of the Indigenous Environmental Network is MCing the event!
May 7th Opening party and launch of the Dominions G20 Issue , 8:00 PM- 3:00 PM, Ryerson University , Ram in the Rye Pub, 55 Gould Street, Corner of Gould and Church
All our welcome, and the event is free!
This is a follow-up conference to last year’s mining conference, which brought over 20 front line defenders to share their stories and strategize solutions to ending corporate impunity and strengthening the struggles against destructive mining projects around the world.
This year, we are expanding the conference into a 3 day event, providing more space for participants to meet each other, form alliances, and plan actions to foster a movement in solidarity with impacted communities.
Check out our conference agenda! Confirmed speakers for 2010 include:
CARLOS AMADOR: Carlos is a teacher and community leader in El Porvenir, 15 kilometers from Goldcorp’s open-pit, cyanide-leaching gold mine – the “San Martin” mine. Since 2000, Carlos has been educating and organizing local communities in the Siria Valley, and working to resist and demand justice for the health and environmental harms and human rights violations caused by Goldcorp’s mine.
JAIME ARDILES is a Representante Sectorial of the Diaguita Huascoaltinos Indigenous and Agricultural Community is located in Chile, in the Huasco Valley, the last unpolluted valley in the north of Chile. Since time immemorial Huascoaltinos have been the guardians of the life in the Huasco Valley and they want to protect their lands for future generations. Today, their culture is being severely threatened by mining companies such as Barrick, New Gold and Goldcorp. He is going to be here with one of the technical advisors of the community to talk about their issues.
CLIFTON ARIHWAKEHTE NICHOLAS: is a Mohawk from Kanehsatake (Oka) is a community activist and was a active participant in the 1990 Oka Crisis. Clifton is active with the traditionalist of the Mohawk Nation and is currently working against the proposed NIOCAN mining project on Kanehsatake’s territory.
ZAFFAR BALOCH: the president of Baloch Human Rights Council of Canada. BHRC is an international non-profit organization based in London, UK. BHRC was founded in August, 2008 in London by the Baloch Diaspora living in Europe, North America, and the Persian Gulf states. The purpose of this organization is to raise the profile of Balochistan on an international scale and to bring awareness in the world community about the gross human rights violations committed against the Baloch nation by the states of Pakistan and Iran. At present, BHRC has chapters in UK, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Canada, and the Persian Gulf States and will soon commence a functioning unit in the US as well.
THE COUNCIL OF CANADIANS: Founded in 1985, the Council of Canadians is Canada’s largest citizens’ organization, with members and chapters across the country.They work to protect Canadian independence by promoting progressive policies on fair trade, clean water, energy security, public health care, and other issues of social and economic concern to Canadians.They develop creative campaigns to put some of the country’s most important issues into the spotlight. They work with a network of over 70 volunteer chapters to organize speaking tours, days of action,conferences and demonstrations. We also produce research reports,create popular materials, and work with individuals and organizations across the country and around the world. We do all of this to ensure that governments know the kind of Canada we want.
MARK CALZAVARA: Regional Organizer Ontario/ Quebec,Council of Canadians
DR. CONSTANCIO ‘CHANDU’ CLAVER: a native of Bontoc, Mountain Province in the northern Philippines, is currently the Chairperson of BAYAN Canada. A surgeon by training and a physician by practice, Dr. Claver has been a doctor of the masses for decades, being the Executive Director of the former Community Health and Education Concerns for Kalinga-Apayao. Formerly the Vice-Chair of the Cordillera Peoples’ Alliance, and chairperson of Bayan Muna in Kalinga, Dr. Claver is known as a staunch advocate of human rights, peace and justice. In July 2006, Dr. Claver, his wife Alyce, and their daughter were targets of a political assassination attempt, which his wife did not survive. Dr. Claver recently won his claim for political refugee status; he and his daughters now live in Canada.
JAVIER de LEON: Javier is a Mayan Mam community leader from the village of Maquivil, municipality of San Miguel Ixtahuacan, department of San Marcos. From his small home, he looks across at Goldcorp’s ever expanding open-pit, cyanide-leaching gold mine – the “Marlin” mine. Since 2004, Javier has been educating and organizing Mayan Mam communities and working to resist and demand justice for the health and environmental harms and human rights violations caused by Goldcorp’s mine.
SUSANA DERANGER: is a member of the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation. She is the co-founder of a new group called Indigenous Women Without Borders and has been an activist and involved in First Nation and human rights a great part of her life. Susana was in Copenhagen and attended the Peoples Summit on Climate Change and Respect for Mother Earth in Cochabamba Bolivia. She also works on community development projects in the Peruvian Amazon and in other countries in Latin America.Susana lives in Regina, Saskatchewan and is a mother of four children and a grandmother of three beautiful grandchildren.
PETER ERICKSON: Carrier Sekani FN Councilor Pete Erickson is a Hereditary chief within the Carrier Sekani First Nation. He goes by TsohDih and is a member of the Beaver Clan. Pete participated in the fight agains Kemess North Mine in the north of our territory, and is currently involved in a dispute with Terrane Minerals and BC over Mt. Milligan. His mother died young from severe form of cancer probably due to the fact she had one of the highest levels of mercury found in canada, and his father lost all his teeth to mercury poisoning while working at one of the two mercyry mines in the region (both closed without cleanup). His community currently has three mining properties on our own family “keyoh” in various stages of development.
ENRICO ESGUERRA: Rick Esguerra taught International Development and Political Science at the University of the Philippines, and was involved in popular education for labour and peasant organizations before coming to Canada in 1990. Since then he has been involved in social justice, human rights and international solidarity work as a member of the Philippine Solidarity Network and the Philippine Network for Justice and Peace (PNJP). In September 2006, he made a presentation for PNJP on Canadian Mining Practices in the Philippines at the Toronto Roundtable on Corporate Social Responsibility and the Canadian Extractive Sector, hosted by the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade.
ULISES GARCIA: Organized the local referendum against Manhattan Resources which managed to expel a powerful global mining company. He is the founder of a grassroots organization called Tropico Seco, which focuses on the promotion of peaceful resistance and the holding of community and municipal referendums in Latin America concerning development initiatives.
TIM GROVES: is a Toronto-based investigative researcher and reporter. He has been sharing his skills with a variety of activist and community groups since 2003.
RAMSEY HART joined MiningWatch Canada as the Canada Program Coordinator in 2008. In this Position Ramsey works with communities concerned with proposed mining projects, reviews environmental assessments, develops proposals for policy reform and provides relevant and critical analysis to the media, concerned citizens and political decision makers. He has been an activist since he was in high school and has worked on a variety of issues and projects, from international mining, to indigenous solidarity and a community bicycle recycling program. When not working or volunteering his time for environmental and social justice causes, he can usually be found in his garden or on the water in a canoe.
CLEVE HIGGINS: is active with FAO-Montreal, supporting community opposition to Canadian mining projects in Mexico and Canada. He recently graduated from McGill after doing an honours thesis on the financing of the Canadian mining industry.
CLAIRE LEHAN: Lehan is a legislative Assistant to MPP John McKay. She had worked on the creation of Bill C300 since its inception.
ALLAN LISSNER: is an independent photojournalist based in Toronto, Canada. Allan’s ongoing project, “Someone Else’s Treasure”, examines the social and environmental impacts of the global mining industry on indigenous communities around the world. Allan has done work with many organizations including Amnesty International, Oxfam Canada, Make Poverty History, Norwegian Church Aid,the Ontario Council for International Cooperation, and the United Nations Development Program.
ROBERT LOVELACE: For nearly 25 years Bob has remained a steadfast and determined representative for the Algonquin communities of Ardoch, Sharbot Lake. He has stood strong with many allies and friends in defence of the wild rice stands near Ardoch Algonquin land. Lovelace is most well-known outside the Ardoch Algonquin community for his stand against uranium mining, for which he was incarcerated in 2008 with no objection from the Province of Ontario at the time.
BODIA MACHARIA: President of Friends of the Congo/Canada.
MIKE MERCREDI: Mike is a member of the Athabasca Chipewyan FN (ACFN).
ENRIQUE RIVERA SIERRA: Rivera is a lawyer and activist working with FAO (Frente Amplio Opositor), a broad environmental and community coalition working to defend Cerro de San Pedro, including historically and culturally significant sites, from contamination and destruction by Canadian company New Gold. Rivera Sierra is currently in Canada claiming political asylum after being allegedly harassed and threatened by mining employees.
NELY RIVERA DE SILVA: de Silva works with CEICOM, the Centre for Research on Investment and Commerce, an organization that does research and advocacy on the impacts of mining investment in El Salvador. At this time, Nely is deeply involved community organizing to prevent the second Goldcorp mine in Guatemala, that of Cerro Blanco, which is on the Guatemala/El Salvador border and threatens access to water and the contamination of water and the eco-system on both sides of the border.
CLAYTON THOMAS MULLER: Is currently the Indigenous Environmental Network Tar Sands coordinator. He is an activist working for indigenous self-determination and environmental justice. For over 10 years he has worked across Canada – at the front lines, to stop industrial society’s assault on Indigenous Peoples lands.
FELICIANO ORELLANA: is a representative of the Commission for Justice and Peace of the Franciscan Family, in the Department of Jutiapa in eastern Guatemala. Employed by Goldcorp subsidiary Entre Mares in 1998 as one of the first employee, he later got hired in 2008 and suffered an almost Fatal accident on the job, for which he received no compensation. Now Feliciano is an active leader in his community and wants to share his experience on Goldcorp Human Rights Violations and the communities’ opposition to the Cerro Blanco Mine, Goldcorp’ second large mine in Guatemala.
CHRIS REID: Lawyer of the Ardoch Algonquin and KI Nations.
MALCOM ROGGE: is a filmmaker and writer based in Toronto. His debut feature documentary film, Under Rich Earth had its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival and has received widespread critical acclaim. Rogge has also worked for human rights and environmental organizations in Canada and Ecuador, and he is on the editorial board of a national magazine devoted to politics and social justice.
NATIVE YOUTH MOVEMENT is the Native Peoples Liberation Movement, fighting for People, Land, and way of Life.The Native Youth Movement is in the midst of becoming a Grand Council of Young and Old (Veteran/Battle Tested) Warriorz alike. A Warriorz Society with the Young Warriorz serving as the Physical protectors, and the O.G.s (Original Guerrillas) as the Advisor Warriorz, giving direction through lessons, age old teachings, previous battles, and from the Spirits and Ancestors.
STEVEN SCHNOOR: For several years, Schnoor has been working on the issue of Canadian mining companies operating in Central America — an interest that began in January 2005/ Film work includes “Desalojo (Eviction)” and “All That Glitters Isn’t Gold: A Story of Exploitation and Resistance.” Steven is presently working on a larger documentary looking at the broader implications of mining in the surrounding regions.
KAREN SPRING : Karen is from Ontario, Canada. With Rights Action since early 2009, she lives and works in Honduras and Guatemala.
MACDONALD STAINSBY: is a grassroots social justice activist, writer, journalist and professional hitchhiker looking for a ride to the better world. He has been the coordinator of http://oilsandstruth.org for over three years, working to shut down tar sands projects in many places around the globe. He has recently returned from Trinidad and Tobago where tar sands strip mining is being proposed and also attended the People’s summit on climate change in Cochabamba and Tiquipaya, in the Plurinational Republic of Bolivia.
JETHRO TULIN: Jethro has been organizing within and outside the Barrick’s Porgera mine since its inception (then owned by Placer Dome. In 1989, he registered Porgera’s first mine workers union and became its first secretary.Years later, Tulin returned to Porgera to find the situation worse and thus founded the Akali Tange Association (ATA), a human rights organization documenting abuses at the Porgera mine in Papa New Guinea – – a mine owned by Toronto’s Barrick Gold.
TENZIN LOBSANG WANGKHANG: Wangkhang is the National Director of Students for a Free Tibet (SFT) Canada, a grassroots non-profit advocacy group based out of Toronto. Students for a Free Tibet Canada is part of the SFT International network which works in solidarity with the Tibetan people in their struggle for freedom and independence from illegal Chinese occupation. Through education, grassroots organizing, and non-violent direct action, they campaign for Tibetans’ fundamental right to political freedom. SFT’s role is to empower and train youth as leaders in the worldwide movement for social justice. One of SFT Canada’s key campaigns is targeting Canadian mining companies that have lead to recent foreign gold rush into Tibet.
DIANE WIGGINS: Post Colborne resident and community organizer for the Coalition Against Contamination. Wiggins is currently involved in a lawsuit againt INCO due to nickel contamination.