Failure to regulate, investigate and ensure access to remedy for harms associated with Canadian mining, oil and gas operations overseas is inconsistent with Canada’s international obligations and has attracted the attention of:
United Nations and regional human rights bodies
- In April 2019, the chair of the UN Working Group on business and human rights, Surya Deva, criticized the Canadian government for delays in creating the Ombudsperson’s office, and warned that Canada’s reputation as a human rights leader would be damaged if the government backtracked on its commitment to provide the CORE with full powers to compel testimony and documents from companies.
- In June 2018, the UN Working Group on business and human rights published a country report calling on Canada to ensure its newly announced Ombudsperson received the resources, independence and powers needed to effectively address human rights abuses by Canadian multinationals.
- From 2007 to 2016, at least four additional United Nations treaty monitoring bodies and the Inter-American Commission of Human Rights have called attention to human rights violations by Canadian extractive companies overseas and called on the Canadian government to create effective mechanisms for investigating and/or preventing abuses.
Communities and workers from around the world
- In 2017 and 2018, letters poured in to the Canadian government from communities around the world asking Prime Minister Trudeau to establish an independent human rights ombudsperson for the international extractive sector. The letters were sent by human rights defenders, community groups, environmental organizations, unions, churches, lawyers and other experts and communities that have been impacted by grave human rights abuses at Canadian mine sites overseas. One of the letters included 240 signatories from 56 countries.
- Canadians from coast to coast to coast
Over 500,000 postcards were sent to members of Parliament in 2009 to call for accountability for Canadian mining companies engaged in abuses overseas.
Over 80,000 signed action cards calling for an ombudsperson for the overseas extractive sector were delivered to MPs at a rally on Parliament Hill in 2014.
Tens of thousands of other Canadians have joined the Open for Justice campaign through petitions, letter writing and meet-your-MP events organized by CNCA members across the country.