SuNNS Related News

 

2019 August 13th

2019

John Perkins Announces Lawsuit Following Arrest at Atlantic Gold Corporation’s Public Information Session - PRESS RELEASE August 13, 2019

“It is critical that any person who wishes to participate in public engagement is able to do so in an atmosphere that is open, accessible, and safe,” states Lisa Mitchell, Executive Director of the East Coast Environmental Law Association. “John Perkins was not given that opportunity.”

SuNNS, the Sustainable Northern Nova Scotia Society, agrees. It views Atlantic Gold’s conduct as “an attempt to suppress open civil discourse and engagement by members of the public in a public process, an action which is unacceptable in a democratic society.”

PRESS RELEASE

—FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE—

John Perkins Announces Lawsuit Following Arrest at Atlantic Gold Corporation’s Public Information Session

Halifax / K’jipuktuk — John Perkins has filed a lawsuit against Atlantic Gold Corporation and the RCMP stemming from his arrest at a public information session organized by the gold mining corporation at the Sherbrooke Fire Hall on May 23, 2019.

Atlantic Gold plans to develop three new gold mines in the province, and it organized the public meeting to provide an opportunity for members of the public to learn more about the company’s plans to avoid environmental contamination in the management and storage of toxic tailings that will be generated in the proposed mining operations. Perkins attended the meeting.

Perkins alleges that Atlantic Gold’s Chief Operating Officer and company director, Maryse Belanger, instructed Atlantic Gold security manager, Terry Moser, to report to the RCMP that Perkins and others were causing a disturbance at the meeting. He alleges that the security manager did as he was told and called 911.

Perkins denies that he or anyone else was causing a disturbance at the meeting and says that those allegations were false and malicious and were in response to some challenging questions he had asked at an earlier session in a polite and courteous manner.

“The only reason I can think of for the corporation to falsely accuse me of causing a disturbance is that they did not like the questions I had asked at an earlier meeting that afternoon,” Perkins says. “They called the RCMP to silence me—to prevent me from asking any critical questions that would be heard by fellow Nova Scotians attending the meeting.”

Perkins also alleges that RCMP officer Justin Greene arrived at the Fire Hall shortly after the false 911 call and was negligent in arresting Perkins without conducting any independent investigation whatsoever.

Videos of the arrest show Greene lifting the sixty-eight-year-old Perkins and shoving him through the doorway, slamming him against a wall, dragging him to the ground, and handcuffing his hands behind his back. Perkins was taken to a nearby police station and kept in lock up for two hours before finally being released without charges.

Perkins alleges he suffered injury, loss, and damage as a result of the incident, including nerve damage to his wrist, shock, and mental anguish.

Perkins says that he is taking legal action to counter the chilling affect the arrest could have on public discourse about the environment: “I feel strongly that it is my duty to hold them accountable for the injuries and harm they have done to me and to do what I can to stop this from happening again. I have done this because I do not want people to think that corporations are

legally permitted to make false accusations against members of the public in order to have them arrested and removed from public meetings. I have done this because I do not want people to think that the RCMP can act on such false accusations and remove people from public meetings without any investigation whatsoever.”

Local organizations and individuals supporting Perkins echo his concerns.

“It is critical that any person who wishes to participate in public engagement is able to do so in an atmosphere that is open, accessible, and safe,” states Lisa Mitchell, Executive Director of the East Coast Environmental Law Association. “John Perkins was not given that opportunity.”

SuNNS, the Sustainable Northern Nova Scotia Society, agrees. It views Atlantic Gold’s conduct as “an attempt to suppress open civil discourse and engagement by members of the public in a public process, an action which is unacceptable in a democratic society.”

Perkins is represented by lawyer Brian Hebert, of McKiggan Hebert Lawyers.
Friends of John have created a GoFundMe campaign to assist with the costs of the lawsuit.

—30—

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

John Perkins (902) 657-0406

Brian Hebert, Lawyer McKiggan Hebert Lawyers (902) 423-2050

Lisa Mitchell, Executive Director
East Coast Environmental Law Association (902) 670-1113

Madeline Conacher
SuNNS (Sustainable Northern Nova Scotia Society) (902) 957-8484

END OF PRESS RELEASE

The full press package will be available on request to sunnsmovement@gmail.com

(Press Release,Statements by Perkins, SuNNS and other Allies, Details of Lawsuit Filed by Perkins)


2019

May 24th - A SuNNS Member was attending a public information meeting on the proposed Cochrane Hill mine.. A security guard working for Atlantic Gold called police to have John Perkins removed from the meeting. See the 2 news articles below

Article 1: https://www.halifaxexaminer.ca/province-house/rcmp-violently-remove-and-arrest-citizen-at-public-meeting-about-gold-mine/?fbclid=IwAR3z85wv5pKJUesSVzMzq8ybCStuNiFMdFDsJ3LwoDmQbBVgJ9GbAmGzl58
Article 2

https://www.halifaxexaminer.ca/province-house/setting-the-record-straight-on-atlantic-golds-spin-job/#Atlantic%20Gold%20statement%20adds%20insult%20to%20injury

Jan 25th 2019 - Arsenic-leaking drillhole deliberately left unfixed by province, documents show | CBC. The hole,  is located along an unpaved road branching off from Warwick Mountain Road. The department of energy & mines should have disclosed information about the leak as soon as it was discovered. The incident highlights a lack of regulatory oversight and enforcement,  the "canary in the coal mine." "This is a wake-up call for citizens in the Tatamagouche area,

Newshttps://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/nova-scotia/drillhole-warwick-mountain-arsenic-iron-gold-exploration-1.4989546

SuNNS Press Release - Jan 2019. Nova Scotia Ministry of Energy and Mines Withholds Toxic Leak Information “Sustainable Northern Nova Scotia (SuNNS) members, the 900 signatories to our petition opposing gold mining exploration or development in the French River Watershed and the population of Tatamagouche are shocked by the news that the Ministry of Energy and Mines has withheld information about a leaking exploration drill hole contaminating the French River Watershed area with arsenic and iron” says SuNNS spokesperson John Perkins.“The government has been in conversation with Sustainable Northern Nova Scotia (SuNNS) many times since the polluting leak was discovered but not once has the leaking well been mentioned, risks explored or remediation efforts discussed. As I understand it the government has taken a hush- hush and wait and see approach” says Perkins. “It makes me wonder if the current governments open for business approach means open for business whatever the human or environmental cost” notes Perkins. Nova Scotia already is known as a most mining – friendly place given its lax regulatory requirements and enforcement and it is this lax approach that hasheightened the concerns of Tatamagouche area citizens. Minister Derek Mombourquette’s Op-Ed in January 2019 Tatamagouche Light assured residents that “ Communities have an opportunity to be involved in all stages of the exploration process” but SuNNS is now asking “how does Energy and Mines not telling Colchester County about a failed, leaking exploration drill site meet the Ministers promise? Perkins also notes “this purposeful withholding of information – especially from the municipal water authority – about an ongoing leak adds to a complete lack of faith in the Ministry of Energy and Mines and the Provincial Regulatory and enforcement frameworks”. SuNNS demands the proper authority act to cap the contaminating drill hole! SuNNS once again calls on the Ministry of Energy and Mines to withhold any issuing of a Request for Proposals for gold mining exploration or development in the French River Watershed and the six other watersheds in the current Enclosure Area. “ It never made sense before and less now; the Request for Proposals should be abandoned” says Perkins. SuNNS further supports the efforts of the Municipality of Colchester as it seeks “Protected “status for the French River Watershed under the Environmental Act given that the French River is the sole source of water for the Village of Tatamagouche. SuNNS will make a formal request to meet the Premier regarding this serious threat to the Tatamagouche water supply. SuNNS spokesperson John Perkins concludes “I think it is fair to say that the government and any interested mining companies should expect a monumental increase in local citizen opposition to gold mining exploration or development in the French River Watershed. Media Contact: John Perkins, Phone, 902-657-0406 or Email jperkins23@mac.com 

Province to spend $15K to cap arsenic-leaking drillhole | CBC News. The government staff knew about the issue last year but decided not to fix it.


https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/nova-scotia/province-to-cap-arsenic-leaking-drillhole-warwick-mountain-1.5000414

SuNNS Press Release Feb 4, 2019 - Ministry of Energy and Mines Backtracks on No Plan to Cap Contaminating Drill Hole
https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1XBNaKOeHIe4Bf4AIxY_AgV0T0yvsmlyR