May 29, 2019
To The Honourable Mark Furey, Minister of Justice, Nova Scotia – The Honourable Ralph Goodale, Minister of Public Safety, Canada
Subject: Atlantic Gold Public Meeting Police Actions ‘Shockingly Brutal.’ (Headline, The Chronicle Herald paper edition, May 26, 2019, p.3)
As Canadian Citizens we are deeply disturbed by the “shockingly brutal“ actions used by the RCMP to remove a law-abiding citizen who was in no way causing a disturbance, from a public meeting in Sherbrooke, NS, on Thursday evening, May 24. In addition we are further disturbed that this RCMP action was apparently in response to a request from Atlantic Gold, a company seeking to develop open- pit gold mines in the area.
John Perkins is a member of the Sustainable Northern Nova Scotia Society (SuNNS). He is an informed, knowledgeable individual who is genuinely concerned about the consequences of open-pit gold mining in our province. His concern is shared by many.
While we are aware that in other parts of the world, police have dealt brutally with peaceful citizens opposed to Canadian mining company operations, we demand that in Canada our police be independent and answerable not to corporations, but to our system of democratic law.
Consequently, we are calling for:
1. A public inquiry into the incident in Sherbrooke to ascertain who specifically called the RCMP, and why the RCMP acted immediately, without cause and without further assessment, to brutally remove a concerned law-abiding citizen who was sitting peacefully and in no way creating a disturbance or obstructing justice, from what was advertised as a public meeting.
2. A statement from both our Provincial Minister of Justice and our Federal Minister of Public Safety stating that it is safe for all citizens to engage in democratic, legal, peaceful forms of questioning and dissent around resource extraction issues without intimidation, the threat of police brutality or arbitrary surveillance. We ask for clarification and clear instructions that RCMP are accountable to the appropriate Government Ministers and that they are not to be unduly influenced by resource extraction corporations.
We ask for a response to these requests by June 30th, 2019.
Madeline Conacher, for Sustainable Northern Nova Scotia Society (SuNNS) Email: firstname.lastname@example.org www.sunns.org
cc: Federal: Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Andrew Scheer MP, Jagmeet Singh MP, Elizabeth May MP, Sean Fraser MP, Bill Casey MP
Provincial: Premier Stephen McNeil, Tim Houston MLA, Gary Burrill MLA, Karen Casey MLA, Lenora Zann MLA, Lisa Roberts MLA, Karla MacFarlane MLA
also: Canadian Civil Liberties Association