GRAN's Mining Justice campaign is undertaken in support of women and girls in sub-Saharan Africa experiencing human rights abuses in mining communities.
Widespread well-documented human rights abuses have been associated with the activities of many Canadian mining companies abroad. These companies must be held accountable for their actions in the communities in which they operate.
Not surprisingly, women are disproportionately affected by human rights abuses in mining communities, including:
- Gender-based violence
- Seizure of land and water without local consultation
- Serious illness or death resulting from toxic chemicals in the air, land and water
- Injuries or death of peaceful protesters
- Destruction of cultural values and the social fabric of communities
More than a year ago, the federal government announced it would appoint an independent Canadian Ombudsperson for Responsible Enterprise (known as CORE), mandated to investigate allegations of human rights abuses by Canadian companies abroad. It was a great promise, but over a year has passed and the position is still vacant.
To be effective, the Ombudsperson must be independent of government and free from political or corporate interference, and must be able to recommend and monitor sanctions. Industry representatives have lobbied intensely against the Ombudsperson having the power to compel documents and testimony.
GRAN calls on the Government of Canada to fulfill its promise of an independent Ombudsperson.