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International Women’s Day 2012: Women Resist Canadian Mining Offensive

by the March 8 Committee of Women of Diverse Origins

Teach-in, workshops, cultural activities Sunday, March 4, 9 :00 am to 4: 30 pm

Montréal, February 28, 2012 – The March 8 Committee of Women of Diverse Origins of Montréal (FDO-WDO) allied with other community groups is organizing a day of information and exchange under the theme: Women Resist Canadian Mining Exploitation…In Defense of Mother Earth.

As the Québec government deploys its Plan Nord with great fanfare as the path to a booming economy for the next 25 years, women from our international network advise us to remember ‘Plan sud’. « We have 50 years of experience with the disastrous consequences of Canadian mining extraction in countries like Guatemala, Ecuador, Colombia, the Philippines, the Congo, as well as in Canada and elsewhere, » says Lesvia Vela, originally from Guatemala.

Sharing these experiences, exchanging strategies with speakers at the heart of these issues is the objective of the day-long teach-in, including cultural activities and good food on Sunday, March 4 from 9 am to 4: 30 pm, at 6767 Côte-des-neiges in Montréal. A press conference will take place at 9 am on site with several of our guest speakers. Among them are Jennifer Moore of Mining Watch Canada, Lina Solano from the Frente de mujeres Defensoras de la Pachamama (Women’s Front in Defense of Mother Earth) from Ecuador, Wahéhshon Shiann Whitebean and Kawisente Carole McGregor, Chiefs of the Mohawk Traditional Council. This will be followed by a panel with Reverend Patricia Lisson, Director of Saint Columba House recently returned from the Philippines, and Maude Chalvin from Projet Accompagnement Solidarité Colombie (PASC), and others. Both women witnessed first-hand the impact of large-scale mining exploitation in the communities they visited.

Women are active on the ground with their communities resisting this aggression, and are often criminalized and even killed to make way for bulldozers and trucks. Many of our own community members came to Canada as migrant workers partly because of the destruction and displacement caused by Canadian mining companies in their countries of origin.

WDO is also calling on all to participate in its annual International Women’s Day Demonstration. Gather on Thursday, March 8 at 6 :00 pm at Norman Bethune Square, in front of Guy-Concordia Metro.

The Program and more information are available on our web site: http :// wdofdo . wordpress . com / . Contact us at: wdofdo @ gmail . com Suggested donation of 5$ at the door, includes lunch (no one turned away). All are welcome.

Wheelchair accessible. Translation and daycare available.

The March 8 Committee of Women of Diverse Origins is an alliance of grassroots women’s organizations representing the diversity of Montreal communities. Since 2002, we have organized an International Women’s Day march and event that reflects our militant stand and our awareness about the world context and the role of our own struggles and actions.

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