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May 2014

We are a Voice for Justice!

Just three days ago, brown cardboard boxes filled the hallway of our offices. It was a beehive of activity, as action cards continued to be sorted by electoral riding, placed into envelopes and packaged into boxes for transportation to Ottawa. Over 300 packages containing over 80,000 cards addressed to nearly every Member of Parliament in Canada surrounded us. It was the final moments of preparation for our rally on mining accountability on Parliament Hill, the culmination of months of campaigning that took place from coast to coast to call on the Government of Canada to create an ombudsman for the extractive sector and give communities in the Global South a Voice for Justice here in Canada.

View the pictures of the rally

On Wednesday, that voice became a roar! As buses and cars arrived from Montreal, Toronto, Quebec City, New Brunswick and Ottawa, the full boxes began to be stacked at the top of the steps of Parliament Hill, an impressive monument of citizen mobilization and action. Suddenly hundreds had convened below, placards in hand, to show their solidarity with the communities in the Global South who are suffering the impacts of Canadian mining, and to show their support for an ombudsman.

Several MPs came out to receive their cards, and MPs Ève Péclet (NDP • Pointe-de-l’Île), Irwin Cotler (Liberal • Mont-Royal), Jean-François Fortin (BQ • Haute-Gaspésie–La Mitis–-Matane–Matapédia) and Green Party representative Lorraine Rekmans addressed the crowd. In addition, Pat Kennedy, President of Development and Peace, Josianne Gauthier, Director of In-Canada Programs at Development and Peace, Ariane Collin, National Council representative and Alex Neve, Executive Director of Amnesty International Canada and representing the Canadian Network on Corporate Accountability (CNCA), which is also campaigning for an ombudsman, spoke on the urgent need for justice.

“We have done an incredible job together on raising awareness on this issue. The issue is not going away and neither are we,” said Josianne.

In addition to the rally, staff and members of Development and Peace who travelled from across the country to Ottawa, met with over 20 MPs to share stories of the communities in the Global South living with Canadian mines on their land, and to discuss the need for an ombudsman.

There is no doubt that a voice for justice was heard on Parliament Hill on May 14th. A voice that is clear, strong and resonant. We would like to thank all those who have participated in this campaign, and we want to share with you some moments from the rally and day of action, which could not have happened without your hard work. Watch a video and view some pictures of the day of action.

Yukon Manitoba Saskatchewan Alberta British Columbia Nunavut North West Territories Ontario Québec New Brunswick Nova Scotia Prince Edward Island Newfoundland and Labrador

Over 80,000 signatures nation-wide were gathered for the campaign.
Click a province on the map for the numbers by riding.

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Development and Peace
1425 René-Lévesque Blvd West, 3rd Floor Montréal (Québec) Canada H3G 1T7
Telephone: 514 257-8711  |  Fax: 514 257-8497  |  Toll Free: 1 888 234-8533