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Public Talk with Judy Da Silva from Grassy Narrows and Judy Rebick

At this public talk, learn about the issue and how you can get involved and work with us.

Mardi Avril 6 2010

Venue: Steelworkers Hall
Address: 25 Cecil Street
Cost: Free but we encourage you to donate to support Grassy Narrows struggle for freedom

40 years ago our people were poisoned with mercury by a paper mill that contaminated our river upstream.  Our people are demanding justice because we are still dealing with the ongoing health impacts of this avoidable disaster.  We want to sound the alarm that this poison will affect everyone if we don’t stand together to protect our water.

At this public talk, learn about the issue and how you can get involved and work with us.


For decades our GNAA grassroots people have been on the front lines of the movement to defend the earth, and to uphold Indigenous self-determination, culture, and spirituality.  We have kicked out logging giant Abitibi for now, but there is still much work to be done.  This is a great opportunity to show your support, and to join us in the fight to protect the water, air, land, creatures, and rights that we all depend on.

Grassy Narrows Asubpeeschoseewagong Anishinabek


On April 6, 1970 the government of Ontario banned fishing on the Wabigoon River due to mercury contamination from a pulp mill in Dryden.  Overnight unemployment in GNAA to rose from 10% to 90%, a primary food staple was lost, and the devastating neurological health impacts of mercury poisoning set in.  At the time the government said it would take months for the mercury to wash out of the river system.

Forty years later, a newly translated Japanese study on the health of GNAA residents shows that while mercury levels are going down, the health impacts of mercury poisoning in GNAA are substantially worse now than they were in the 70's.  This has huge consequences for GNAA and neighbouring communities.  It also has important implications about the long term cumulative health impacts of low level mercury exposure.  The study concludes that Health Canada safety guidelines for mercury consumption are not strong enough to protect us from the nearly universal mercury contamination still being spread by coal fired power plants, mine tailings, and other industrial processes.

We need to act now to demand justice for our people, and to protect the water.


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