Protesters ushered away from Goldcorp’s AGM

Protesters ushered away from Goldcorp’s AGM

By SUSAN LAZARUK, The Province May 18, 2011

About three dozen demonstrators opposed to gold and silver mining companies brought their noisy protest into the lobby of the Pan Pacific Hotel during Goldcorp’s annual general meeting.

The mostly young protesters, some playing brass instruments and others beating on native drums and waving placards, said their rally was designed to raise public awareness about what they called human-rights abuses, health problems and environmental violations associated with the mining operations of the Vancouver-based company.

Included among the speakers was Carlos Amador, a teacher and community leader in Honduras, near Goldcorp’s San Martin mine, where he organizes communities in the Siria Valley to fight what the group calls environmental damage and human-rights violations caused by the mine.

Also speaking was Jesus Lara, a Wixarika (Huichol) artist and healer, who fights in his native Mexico against a mining proposal by First Majestic Silver, a Vancouver-based company.

The protesters, escorted by police, had a parade permit to travel through Gastown to the hotel but no permission to enter. After protesters entered through the back door, Vancouver police and hotel security prevented them from going up the escalator to the floor where Goldcorp was scheduled to hold their AGM and they left after brief speeches.

They group was to move on to the nearby office of the Canada Pension Plan, which the group said invests in mining companies like Goldcorp.

They are scheduled to protest on Thursday outside First Majestic Silver’s AGM on West Hastings Street, where Wixarika people will lead a demonstration demanding the company stop mining on sacred land in Mexico.

Goldcorp employs 11,500 people worldwide in “politically stable jurisdictions throughout the Americas,” according to its website.

The company said it’s “committed to responsible mining practices” and “endeavours to deliver sustainable prosperity for our shareholders, employees, business parties and the communities” it operates in.

Goldcorp earlier this month announced its earnings doubled for the first quarter of 2011. Net earnings were $651 million, or 50 cents a share, up from $232 million in the first quarter of 2010.

Gold was trading Wednesday at almost $1,500 an ounce.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: