Community Organizations of Northern Haiti Reject Mining

Today, residents of Morne Pele in the North of Haiti and members of the Kolektif Jistis Min (Mining Justice Collective or KJM) held a press conference to share their message, Wi ak Lavi, NON ak eksplwatasyon min (yes to life, no to mining). Last month, thirteen community organizations from Morne Pele signed an open letter to local and national government authorities. The organizations represent a broad cross-section of society, including the local health center, religious groups, schools, government authorities, workers’ rights organizations, and farmers’ groups. Morne Pele, also called Morne Bossa, is the site of one of three gold mining exploitation permits in Haiti.

The letter, available below in English, Kreyòl, and Spanish, states that agriculture is fundamental to the livelihood of Haitian people, and that the proposed gold mining project in Morne Pele threatens agriculture and the environment as a whole. The letter states that mining for gold may violate Haiti’s Constitution, which provides special protections for the degraded environment and guarantees the right to access to information. To date, mining projects have been characterized by a total lack of transparency or, as Haitian leaders have often said, an “information blackout.”

The signatory organizations request agricultural reform, education, reforestation, and potable water. The letter concludes: “In order for us to win this struggle, we seek national and international solidarity, with people who believe that life is more meaningful than making money.”

Read the letter in English, Kreyòl, and Spanish.

Morne Pele is the site of the right to water study that the Clinic is conducting with KJM and scientists from Penn State University.  For more on the study, see our March 22, 2018 press release.


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