Cochabamba, Mexico City, London, Ottawa, Washington – Over 300 organizations from around the world have signed onto an open-statement condemning the ways that the mining industry and numerous governments are taking advantage of the COVID-19 pandemic to manufacture new mining opportunities and enhance their damaged reputations.
The statement identifies four major trends in how the mining industry has abused the pandemic to turn a profit and advance their interests, putting land and water protectors at greater risk of harm:
- Ignoring the threat of the pandemic and continuing to operate, putting communities and workers at grave risk of infection;
- Continuing violence against defenders and repressing community protests, many long-standing, in order to promote more mining;
- Donating money, sanitary supplies and test-kits to cover up their dirty operations and portray themselves as public saviours; and
- Securing regulatory changes to eliminate public oversight and expedite permits for their operations.
The Global Solidarity Statement condemns the responses of companies and governments to the pandemic as aggressions which exacerbate the multiple pandemics – health, economic, violence, militarization and corporate capture – that Indigenous Peoples, affected communities and workers face on a daily basis.
In the context of an intersecting global health, economic, ecological and climate crisis, they also assert that healthy communities, Indigenous Peoples, workers, and social movements – not the profits of predatory mining corporations – are essential during the pandemic and must be at the center of plans moving forward.
Snapshot report – Voices from the Ground: How the Global Mining Industry is Profiting from the COVID-19 Pandemic
A snapshot report, Voices from the Ground: How the Global Mining Industry is Profiting from the COVID-19 Pandemic, was also released today highlighting dozens of cases from around the world that exemplify the trends identified in the statement. You can access the report here and add your name to the Global Solidarity Statement here.