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News Release

"Strengthening Our Voices: Leadership Conference on Canadian Mining Held in Winnipeg, October 4-6

On October 4-6, sixty-eight leaders from across Canada gathered at the Viscount Gort Hotel in Winnipeg for "Strengthening our Voices: a leadership conference about mining in Canada".

The workshops included:

  • A slide show on the environmental and social impacts of mining in Canada's boreal forest;
  • Mining's privileged access to land (sometimes known as "free entry"): this workshop had a panel including provincial and federal crown land, private land, and first nations land perspectives;
  • Diamonds: a look at the context of conflict diamonds in Africa, lessons learned from the Lutsel K'e First Nation's experience with negotiating an IBA with BHP and Rio Tinto/Aber (the Ekati and Diavik diamond mines respectively) in the North West Territories, and the environmental impacts of diamond mining;
  • Divided communities: a workshop for people to share their stories from their communities;
  • Financing strategies: a workshop about investor campaigning; and
  • The full costs of mining: a presentation of the report: "Looking Beneath the Surface" which examines the perverse subsidies and tax exemptions that the federal, BC, Ontario, Yukon, and Qu├ębec governments give to the mining industry.

This conference was an excellent opportunity to introduce people to different struggles across Canada, and an exciting moment in building a Canadian network on mining issues.