Social Justice and Democracy

Profits & People: Canadian extractive sector companies need to be held accountable

July 15, 2015

Canadian extractive sector companies account for almost half of the world’s mining and mineral exploration activity.  They have interests in more than 8,000 places in over 100 countries globally.

With this amount of power and capacity internationally, it’s important that policies and standards are in place to ensure these companies engage in responsible business practices.  This includes worker safety and security, environmental responsibility, accountability for revenues generated from activities, and ensuring positive outcomes for the local communities in which they operate.

Far too often this is not the case. These Canadian owned companies operating overseas have been accused of and associated with human rights abuses, injured or killed workers, environmental destruction, and corruption that prevents tax revenues from being invested back into communities and public services.

The Canadian Labour Congress, in collaboration with the Canadian Network on Corporate Accountability, is part of an initiative called Open for Justice.  We are calling on the government of Canada for:

  • An extractive-sector Ombudsman with the power to independently investigate complaints and make recommendations to corporations and the Government of Canada.
  • Legislated access to Canadian courts for people who have been seriously harmed by the international operations of Canadian companies.

Individuals and communities who have suffered harm at the hands of these companies and their practices have nowhere to seek justice: not in one’s own country, not in international arenas, and not in Canada. This is why we must make Canada Open For Justice.

Here’s how you can get involved:

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