BVDA Calls For Free Water and Future Health Care Costs
August 31, 2018
BVDA CALLS FOR FREE WATER AND FUTURE HEALTH CARE COSTS
FOR ENTIRE COMMUNITY
Homestake-Barrick Gold has now hired a director of US Corporate Responsibility, Rebecca Darling, who met with a small group of community members and promised those present that the company planned to begin living up to its commitment to honor the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, a voluntary document originating under the leadership of the late Kofi Anan, and authored by John Ruggie, who now serves on Barrick Gold’s Corporate Responsibility Advisory Board.
Under its new emphasis on corporate responsibility, Barrick Gold has made reparations to women raped at their mining operations in Papua, New Guinea; the company is working to contain a cyanide spill in Argentina; it has signed on to an out-of-court settlement for Tanzanian villagers in relation to killings at its North Mara mine; and in New Mexico, the company will meet soon with the Village of Milan “to discuss the administrative aspects of Homestake [Barrick Gold] re-initiating the provision of water for Murray Acres’ residents,” a community near the site with about a fifth of the total residents in the area. In addition, in a letter to the group, a company representative stated that “Homestake [Barrick Gold] continues to be interested in purchasing properties in the area, contingent on funding.” It is noteworthy that the Barrick Gold Corporation has netted over $18 billion dollars in the last decade.
BVDA is now asking Homestake-Barrick Gold to extend these initial efforts to all residents in the area–about 110 families in total. Also, the organization is requesting Homestake-Barrick Gold honor the other requests the organization outlined in its December 2017 letter*, and begin discussing ways to create a fund to cover health costs of residents who may develop lung cancer in the future as a result of long-term exposure to radon from the still unremediated site.
Contact: Candace Head-Dylla: 505-401-4349
Bluewater Valley Downstream Alliance (BVDA)
Core Member of the Multicultural Alliance for a Safe Environment