Thursday, June 19, 2008

Peterborough city council urges provincial government to suspend uranium exploration in the province


City council called Monday night for the province to suspend uranium exploration — the same day the provincial government announced it would build two new nuclear reactors at its Darlington station.

John Kittle, with the Community Coalition Against Mining Uranium, urged council to pass the resolution calling for the moratorium.

Allowing mining companies to explore for uranium in Ontario watersheds is a recipe for disaster, Kittle said.

“They’re not good neighbours,” he said. “The province should treat uranium as a high priority special case.

“We need to make it crystal clear to the province that we don’t want this.”

In addition to the environmental impacts, Kittle said the mining legislation allows companies to stake claims without permission from property owners or municipalities.

“It’s a throwback to the Wild West days and it’s still on the books,” he said of the legislation. “The McGuinty Liberals are determined to allow uranium exploration in Ontario.”

Council unanimously approved the resolution to ask the province for a moratorium untilall environmental and health issues related to uranium mining are resolved.

The gallery erupted with applause after the vote.

Full Story: Peterborough Examiner

Darlington to get 2 new reactors

Robert Benzie
Debra Black

Power-hungry Ontario wants new sources of electricity near Toronto. Hard-hit Durham Region wants jobs. Those factors won out over environmental fears and huge costs yesterday as the province announced that the Darlington nuclear plant will be expanded to accommodate two giant reactors.

Canada's first new reactors in two decades are expected to generate up to 3,200 megawatts of power. That is almost enough to power all homes and businesses in Toronto and nearly doubles Darlington's current capacity.
Toronto Star

Just in case we thought Queen's Park was actually listening... I love this though:
"Phillips declined to give a price tag for the Darlington project other than to say it would fit within the overall $26.3 billion replacement and refurbishment nuclear plan over the next 20 years.

"I won't give you an estimate today. The reason for that is we are going to use this very good, competitive process to get the possible deal," he said, acknowledging that even though the winning company would face "penalties" for some extra costs, ratepayers would be on the hook for the cost overruns. "

Has no one been paying attention to their hydro bills in the last 20 years? We're still paying for the first set of reactors, and not all of them are actually working.

Queen's Park to Grassy Narrows: Organizing to win

"I heard it on the television/ All the talking politicians/ Words are easy, words are cheap/ Much cheaper than our priceless land/ But promises can disappear/ Just like writing in the sand/" – Australian musician Yothu Yindi.

For years, every level of Canadian government has made assurances to the First Nations – most never carried out. But in just a couple weeks, we've seen amazing gains for First Nations communities in Ontario. Leaders have been freed from jail. The third largest logging company in North America has been driven away by resistance from the First Nations community that stakes claim on that land. Finally, diverse communities, organizations and individuals who have been hesitant to work together in the past are working hand-in-hand for Native land rights.


Thursday, June 12, 2008

Peterborough Becomes #20!

Council against uranium mining in watershed

City council wants the province to halt uranium exploration, mining and related processing in the Otonabee River watershed to protect the city's water supply.

Council, sitting as committee of the whole last night, supported a motion presented by an anti-nuclear group -Safe and Green Energy.
Peterborough Examiner

Congrats to SAGE for their excellent work!

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Seven aboriginal protesters granted release by Ontario Appeal Court

May 28, 2008 - 6:28 pm


TORONTO - Moments after the Ontario Court of Appeal decided he'd served enough time behind bars, the last of seven aboriginal protesters jailed over disputes with mining exploration companies walked out of court saying he planned to stroll barefoot in the grass.

The overcrowded courtroom, filled mostly with aboriginal supporters, burst into applause and even a court police officer shook the hand of Ardoch Algonquin First Nation's leader Bob Lovelace who spent 3 1/2 months in jail.

"It feels really good. It feels like justice is on our side," Lovelace said on the front steps of the courthouse, his wife by his side.

"I think I'm going to go out and put my feet in the grass. It's been a long time."

The eastern Ontario aboriginal leader was jailed in February for breaching an injunction that allowed Frontenac Ventures to conduct uranium exploration activities on his community's traditional territory unhindered.

While the ruling does nothing to resolve the dispute, Lovelace said he hoped this "exercise" would prompt the Ontario government to engage in "meaningful" discussion and consultation on the matter which ultimately comes down to an archaic Mining Act that allows companies to stake land anywhere they like.

But Lovelace cautioned he must "continue to protect our land," meaning he may be forced to occupy the disputed territory again if the company decides to proceed with exploration activities - a situation that could land him back in jail.

The court also decided six leaders from Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug (KI) First Nation had served enough time and ought to maintain their freedom.

They had breached a similar injunction involving the company Platinex Inc., which sought to drill on their land some 600 kilometres north of Thunder Bay, Ont.

Chief Donny Morris, deputy KI chief Jack McKay and members Sam McKay, Darryl Sainnawap, Cecilia Begg and Bruce Sakakeep were granted a temporary release last Friday pending the outcome of Wednesday's sentence appeal.

Chris Reid, a lawyer representing the two aboriginal groups, argued aboriginal law dictates the leadership must uphold the wishes of their community, which in this case, is to stop companies from engaging in mining exploration on their land.

"This is not an isolated case," Reid said. "It's something that's going to occur again and again."

He suggested the aboriginal groups are prepared to discuss the matter, but want the right to say no if they don't like what they hear.

The Appeal Court judges ruled that all seven would have their sentences reduced to time served but reserved their reasons for the ruling.

While lawyers representing the two companies supported the release of the KI 6, they contested Lovelace's release, suggesting he had only to agree to abide by the rules of the injunction.

Lawyer Neal Smitheman argued Lovelace's non-status band had a weak claim to the contested land in the first place which makes it a much different case than that of the KI 6.

Another group of Algonquins have been negotiating a land claim that includes the Ardoch territory for more than a decade but negotiations have "failed miserably," he added.

He suggested it's really a matter for the province to resolve, not the mining companies.

"This is not Frontenac's fight. We are not the villains. We are the victim," he said.

"We're just obeying the law."

As for the KI appeal, Smitheman told the court he was "instructed" by Platinex not to oppose it.

"It does not serve any purpose to keep the leaders of KI incarcerated," he argued.

The groups have repeatedly slammed the province for doing nothing on the matter. Aboriginal Affairs Minister Michael Bryant even walked out of a meeting Tuesday with the KI 6 when the conversation turned to Lovelace's fate, Reid said.

Still, the province's lawyer Malliha Wilson, surprised everyone when she spoke out in support of freeing all seven protesters.

She also sparked a waved of laughter and much confusion among the three-judge panel when she suggested a more appropriate punishment than jail would have been to fine them and direct the money to a trust fund to support their communities.

One judge noted the province's original position was to "impose a fine that hurts," and questioned the sudden change in language which was now promoting reconciliation.

"The words 'hurt' and 'reconciliation' are total opposites," Justice James MacPherson said.

Seven aboriginal protesters granted release by Ontario Appeal Court

44 minutes ago

TORONTO — Seven aboriginal protesters jailed over disputes with mining companies have been freed from jail following a decision by the Ontario Court of Appeal today.

Six leaders from the KI First Nation in northern Ontario were jailed March 17 for disobeying court orders in an ongoing dispute with Platinex Inc. A seventh protester from the Ardoch Algonquin First Nation was jailed in February for a similar court breach in eastern Ontario.

The six KI members were freed temporarily last Friday after being sentenced to six months in jail.

The Appeal Court judges ruled that all seven would have their sentences reduced to time served.

The judges reserved their reasons for the ruling.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Platinex Commences Lawsuit Against Ontario Government

CNW Group Portfolio E-Mail


Transmitted by CNW Group on : May 22, 2008 10:55

Platinex Commences Lawsuit Against Ontario Government

TORONTO, May 22 /CNW/ - Platinex Inc. (TSX Venture: PTX) today announced
that it had commenced a lawsuit against the Government of Ontario claiming
$50 million of general damages, $20 million of special damages, plus
and costs. The lawsuit arises out of its mining claims in the Big Trout Lake
area. Platinex has been unable to gain access to its mining claims because
actions by Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug ("KI").
Platinex claims that Ontario failed to discharge its obligation to
consult KI and that it breached its duty to warn Platinex that it would not
enforce the rule of law around the Platinex mining claims. Platinex has
suffered substantial wasted expenditures and economic harm as a result of
being able to access its mining claims.

James Trusler, President and CEO of Platinex, stated, "We felt we had no
choice but to file this lawsuit. Our exhaustive efforts in consultation with
KI over nine years have been rejected by KI despite landmark Supreme Court
rulings which have determined that a First Nation does not have a veto and
also despite recommendations of the recent Ipperwash inquiry. Our court
ordered access to the mining claims has not been enforced."

In addition to the pursuit of access to and exploration of the Big Trout
Lake property, Platinex intends to focus its future exploration efforts on
other areas. On April 22, 2008, Platinex announced that it had staked claims
in Ontario at North McFauld's Lake, South McFauld's Lake, Norton Lake,
Awkward Lake, Core Zone and Tib Lake. Platinex also announced that it had
acquired an option on claims in Churchill, MacMurchy and Asquith Townships,
Ontario. Additionally, on March 3, 2008, Platinex announced that it had
claims on the Muskox Intrusion, in Nunavut Territory.

About Platinex Inc.

Platinex is a Canadian exploration company based near Toronto. Platinex
focuses on carefully selected Platinum Group Element targets in settings
analogous to the JM reef (Stillwater Complex, Montana) and the Merensky and
UG2 reefs (Bushveld Complex, RSA). Platinex is determined to find platinum
sources to be used in the campaign to eliminate the threat of global
Platinex also focuses on opportunistic acquisitions in non-PGE projects
show promise of near term improvement in value. Shares of Platinex are
for trading on the TSX Venture Exchange under the symbol PTX.

Press Release: KI 6 to be Released Today, Bob Lovelace to Remain Incarcerated

Subject: Press Release: KI 6 to be Released Today, Bob Lovelace to Remain Incarcerated

A motion was heard today in Toronto asking for the immediate release of
political prisoners Bob Lovelace, and the KI 6 pending the appeal of the
sentencing for contempt which will be heard on Wednesday May 28.

Members of KI will be released today because Platinex, the platinum
exploration company operating within their lands prior to the blockade,
agreed to no drilling during this week leading up to the appeal.
Frontenac Ventures, on the other hand, refused to make a similar
guarantee to refrain from exploration work in Algonquin territory. Such
a gesture would have allowed Bob Lovelace to be released pending the
appeal under the same circumstances as KI leaders and council members.
Bob Lovelace, therefore is to remain incarcerated and will be
transported to the appeal hearing on Wednesday.

For more information on what transpired in court today, contact Chris
Reid who is legal council for both Ardoch First Nation and KI.

He can be reached at 1-416-466-9928 or

Thursday, May 22, 2008


Letter to the Legislators of Ontario

May 11, 2008

I am writing this letter to you from the Central East Correctional Centre in Lindsay, Ontario. I have been imprisoned here during the last three months for contempt of court because I said I cannot obey an injunction which conflicts with my duty under Algonquin law to protect our land.

I am writing because I believe you are honest men and women who work in the best interests of your constituents and for the betterment of Ontario. Is it to your intelligence and compassion that this letter is addressed. What I write may shock and anger you. It will certainly cause embarrassment. My hope is that what you read here will engender in you the same commitment to justice that I have felt within these prison walls and throughout my life.

On February 15th of this year, I was sentenced to six months in prison and fined $25,000. Co-Chief Paula Sherman was also fined $15,000. She is a single mother and a grandmother and the sole supporter for three dependents. She cannot and will not pay the fine and will have to report to jail on May 15 to serve a 90 day prison sentence. Our offence was declaring our intention to peacefully protect our homeland after 30,000 acres had been staked for uranium exploration. The staking had been done without our knowledge or consent and the claims were registered by Ontario's Ministry of Mines without notification. Extensive deep core drilling was planned for last summer without consultation or accommodation.

In June of last year, the Council of the Ardoch Algonquin First Nation requested the exploration company remove their personnel and equipment. When they complied, we secured the area with the help of our non-Algonquin neighbours. In July, the company, Frontenac Ventures Corporation, sued us for $77 million, and in August obtained an injunction ordering unfettered access to our lands. Since their still had not been any consultation, as required by Supreme Court decisions, we refused to remove the security barrier, and found ourselves convicted of "contempt" by your court.

Although the context behind my imprisonment is useful, this letter is not about mining or the out-dated Ontario Mining Act. There is already much public discussion now going on about toxic mining and the need to protect citizens' rights. This letter as well is not about Aboriginal rights or the protection of our homeland, although our Indigenous rights and responsibilities contribute to the discourse. This letter is a case against colonialism, the dysfunctional heritage that we share; the colonialism that informs every aspect of our current relationship and will undo our security and undermine the future for all citizens in this province. Democracy and colonialism can not walk hand-in-hand for long before the disparity in justice, economic opportunities and morality so sickens human spirits that we will all live without hope of becoming the nations we wish to be.

For many years in my intellectual life I tried to understand why, as Indigenous people, we were destined to suffer under the oppression of colonialism. I wanted to know if some natural law at the beginning of time had proclaimed it so, or if it were an accident of conditioning, or if it were essential to social order that made such suffering a necessity. I believed that if I could only know how it had come to be then I would be satisfied with the justification, or understand how you fix the mechanics.

As the years have carved away my curiosity, I have at last concluded that it does not matter how colonialism came to be or who is at fault. I do not care if I ever know how colonialism took root in this world. Now, I just want to be free of it. I want to know that succeeding generations of First Nations children will not be looked upon as inferior, that their birthright and home will not be stolen, that they will have the advantage of dreaming their own dreams and following their own visions. And as much as I want my own children to be free, I want your children not to suffer the moral uncertainty that comes with living well because others are oppressed.

You are legislators. You have the responsibility for writing the laws and policies that frame colonialism and give it social and political structure in Ontario. Unwriting colonialism is not a political process. One party or coalition can not do it alone. Ending legal colonialism is not for partisans. It requires a consensus among law makers who regard justice and humanity above competition for popularity. Those of you who will work for just change will believe in the rightness of your laws as strongly as I believe in the rightness of Algonquin law. When you decide to erase colonialism from your laws you will be risking your future as much as I have risked mine. They are your laws that embody colonial oppression of Aboriginal people and although we can offer guidance, it will be you as legislators who will choose to be, or choose not to be, the burden of innocent generations of come.

The present and accepted course of de-colonization has failed. It has failed both in letter and in spirit. We are living an illusion that Canada and the Provinces no longer oppress First Nations. Nothing in this lie could be further from the truth. If it was so, when did this reversal take place? Was it with Confederation? No - Confederation marked the transition from an ambivalent British Crown to a purposeful extermination of everything Indian. Was it during the Canadian centre of repressive laws that alienated Aboriginal people from their lands and customs? No. Did revisions of the federal Indian Act reverse the national strategy of "taking the Indian out of the Indian child" or save thousands of Indian children from the "sixties scoop"? No.

Have decisions of the Supreme Course recognized original jurisdiction or simply redefined domination in more tolerable terms? Did the Royal Commission on Aboriginal People and hundreds of other studies inform the Nation and change public attitudes? No. Did patriating the Constitution in 1982 succeed in defining the rights and jurisdiction of Aboriginal Nations as it did for the Federal and Provincial governments? No! Please, honestly, ask yourselves, when such a historical turn around occurred and when substantial changes in legislation were written which would have allowed the transition to take place.

Freedom does not come in increments. Colonialism will not give way through wishful thinking or half-measures. In the past, politicians, clergy and intellectuals argued that Aboriginal people were not ready for "civilization" and needed the guiding hand of the colonizer. This ideology is nothing more than self-serving paternalism. Freedom is not something that Aboriginal people should have to earn. If freedom were to be bought, then we have paid for it a thousand fold. Freedom comes when the gate is opened wide or broken down. If there is anyone who has not been ready for Aboriginal people to take their rightful place in Canada, it is you, the colonizer. Until you actively and explicitly make colonialism illegal then it will always be you who are not ready.

The forces that guard colonialism are large. The federal and provincial governments employ hundreds of lawyers, bureaucrats and academics to discredit Aboriginal claims and put Aboriginal people in their place. They work on land claims, court cases and public policy in an effort to limit the Crown's obligations and liability to Aboriginal people. When have Ontario lawyers defended an Aboriginal right or vigorously advanced Aboriginal claims? They just don't do that.

Colonialism will remain firmly entrenched as long as we work in an adversarial system in which communities that have been undermined socially, economically and politically for over two centuries must play by their opponents' rules on a field with a precipitous incline. I have watched as a generation of great minds have been squandered on both sides of this rivalry because intransigent bureaucrats and partisan politicians have been afraid to let "the thin edge of the wedge" change public policy and institutionalize just treatment of Aboriginal citizens. It is not for want of informed and competent negotiators that Canada and Ontario have a slew of unsettled claims and associated conflicts; rather it is the law makers' lack of political will, fairness and honesty in putting an end to the immoral advantage of colonialism.

Let me give you a clear and recent example of how Aboriginal people experience negotiations. In October of last year, Judge Cunningham of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice, who presides in the suit brought by Frontenac Ventures against my community, suspended the hearing for twelve weeks in an effort to get all the parties talking. Ontario, Frontenac Ventures and the two First Nations agreed to a prioritized list of issues and to jointly choose a mediator. At that point, we removed our security barrier and permitted Frontenac Ventures to carry out unobtrusive survey work.

When the discussions began, the corporation did not attend or send a representative. Instead they installed security guards at the site.

Ontario's representatives consistently refused to discuss the issues outlined in the predetermined agenda which included as the first item, Ontario's legal responsibility to consult with First Nations communities before development of a resource begins. Ontario negotiators rejected out of hand three comprehensive settlement proposals put forward by Ardoch. Ontario negotiators demanded that we inventory our "values" for the staked land, but refused to accept the description of these "values" when expressed in cultural context or with their meanings in Anishnabemowin, our language.

When it was apparent that time was running out in the 12 week process, the lead Ontario negotiator, who had been a former Deputy Minister of Northern Development and Mines, conceded that Ontario's duty to consult should be met. He agreed with Ardoch that a broad range of possible outcomes should be considered. He also agreed that the consultation process could conclude with an end to uranium exploration. Ardoch had favoured such an open consultation from the beginning of negotiations. Having arrived at an agreement that a plan of "appropriate consultation" would be submitted to Judge Cunningham we proceeded to discuss the framework for the consultation process.

A week later, after substantial collaboration on the framework, Ontario's lead negotiator advised us that there had never been an intention to halt exploration and that exploratory drilling would be taking place during the proposed consultation process. We could either agree or face the court and charges of contempt.

This experience seems to be universal across the country. It has not changed much since the starvation tactics used by Sir John A. Macdonald in negotiating the early numbered treaties. While Aboriginal people cling to the hope that the Crown administrators will be merciful and accept some limited fashion of constitutionally protected rights, bureaucrats and their Ministerial masters do everything in their power to extinguish those rights and uphold the colonial state.

Legislators and governments are not solely responsible for maintaining the immoral practice of colonialism. Even the Supreme Court of Canada, often praised for its progressive decisions on Aboriginal rights, is a principle defender of the sovereign privilege of domination. Supreme Court decisions, while recognizing the historical and legal validity of Aboriginal rights, limit the scope and practice of those rights in favour of "larger" Canadian interests. An analogy of the dilemma is listening to the stories of an abused child in an Indian residential school, patting her on the head and then telling her not to disobey the priest. Such is the sanctimonious hypocrisy of your highest court. These same courts permit Canada's governments to ponder for years on the policy implications reflecting these half-hearted concessions, rendering the entire legal process of protecting Aboriginal rights an exercise in "too little, too late".

Ontario has been consistently guilty of regarding Aboriginal rights as an inconvenient demand on the moral character of a tolerant society. But Aboriginal rights are your laws, not ours. They originate in English law as the doctrine of "continuity" and find substance in such documents as the Royal Proclamation of 1763. Section 35 rights in the Canadian Constitution are an attempt to address the fundamental denial of the existing laws of Aboriginal Nations and to bring into sovereign Canada a sense of Aboriginal belonging. But we have had our own laws and governance and the Crown, through the doctrine of "continuity" has never had the right to overrule them.

Our laws do not involve a concept of "rights". In our cultures, mutual respect and benefit are understood as imperatives for survival. Aboriginal cultures regard law as a complex set of responsibilities to the land and in human relations. The emphasis is on protecting sustainability and avoiding conflict. When Europeans first came to settle in the Ottawa valley in 1800, this is what our ancestors asked of them: to share the land and get along. Through 150 years of French and 100 years of English contact, the doctrine of "continuity" was practiced. We must be clear that recent constitutional commitments in section 35 to "recognize and affirm" Aboriginal and treaty rights are Canadian law. Our leaders at the time asked for much more.

The disparity between your laws and ours' represents the gap between lip service and Aboriginal peoples' ambition to restore our homelands and cultures. Without a sense of moral clarity and comprehensive entitlements, section 35 of your Constitution is almost meaningless. It gives you as legislators no standard or instruction upon which to write anti-colonial legislation. As such, it gives Canadian courts nothing with which to reconcile the past and even less with which to arbitrate the future. Courts will continue to define Aboriginal rights as subservient and Aboriginal title as third class.
As a colonized people we must accept a share of the responsibility for our condition. Like you, we have internalized colonialism. We have allowed it to inform the way we see the world and ourselves. Too often we have turned to the colonizing governments for support. Too often we expect you to solve out problems or blame you for our inadequacies. Too often we are satisfied with handouts rather than partnerships or ownership. We have come to accept colonial labels such as "status" and "non-status" as definitions of who we are. We let these labels divide our families and communities.

Our leaders have accepted foreign forms of governance which undermine our unity and foster corruption. We have come to accept that blood quantum, shades of skin colour and even levels of education determine our Indianess. Far too often we have given up, given in to self-hate, self-abuse and the abuse of others. Like you, we have to confront colonialism on our own terms, for it is just as immoral to accept victimization as it is to benefit from oppression.

Ontario's education system is a primary instrument in ensuring that colonialism remains unchallenged. Many Ontarians know nothing of how generations of Aboriginal children were victimized by church and state. Ontarians posses only a vague understanding of how land was overrun by settlement in the 19th century and Aboriginal people were forced to sign unconscionable treaties and land sales in return for modest protection. As far as understanding the evolution of colonial laws, almost all citizens are ignorant.

Even the real suffering of their own immigrant ancestors as slaves, indentured servants, child labour and cannon fodder have been sanitized for the popular glorification of Ontario's history. Many of these immigrants were escaping colonialism in their own homelands, just as refugees today come to Canada to find a better life. But they acquire no real history about themselves and at best only an "honourable mention" of Aboriginal realities. Without an honest and fully informed education system, your job of challenging and changing colonial laws is as difficult as our in changing the attitudes of ignorant neighbours.

Almost all of you have either publicly or privately condemned the Aboriginal people who protest and obstruct economic and civic activity. At best you have expressed complacent tolerance and an admission that Aboriginal dissatisfaction may have some merit. Ontario's civility rests on its affluence, not on its moral intelligence or character. It is this artificial civility that Aboriginal protestors challenge. Each time a road is blocked, exploration for minerals is halted, or forestry is interrupted, Aboriginal activists are raising the prickly question of Ontario's morality.

Each time a protest forces a political "spin" to be re-spun, law makers are confronted with the ineptitude of their own professional history. You may not like the politics of confrontation but I would rather see Shawn Brant block the 401 than Ovide Mercredi begging at the gates of Meech Lake, or Phil Fontaine writing Steven Harper's apology for the abuse of residential schools.
The affluence of Ontario has been acquired from the sacrifice of our ancestors' health and the wealth of our homelands. If immobilizing the power of that affluence is the only way to expose the evil of colonization then you need to brace yourselves. Aboriginal people and our thoughtful neighbours are sick and tired of colonialism. People of all races who hunger for justice, who understand the sacredness of creation and the folly of greed will find expression in tearing down colonialism. Aboriginal protests are not so much about past grievances. They are about the effects of present dispossession. Aboriginal activism is about changing the course of the future.

During the last week of May, Aboriginal people across Canada will be preparing for the National Day of Action on May 29th. Many people will come to Queen's Park. They are coming to talk to you. Throughout that week you will have the opportunity to listen to Aboriginal people and their friends express their fears and aspirations for the future. You will also hear their complaints. If you are wise you will listen. If you are as courageous as they are, you will allow what you hear to inspire your actions. If you are thankful for the Creator's gift of life, you will extend your hands in peace and friendship. It is up to you if you choose a partnership with Aboriginal Nations to begin the arduous task of rewriting Ontario's laws to exclude colonial principles. But if you choose to do nothing, or to condemn us, then please do not make excuses or false promises.

In the days leading up to May 29th, the media will extol the Canadian virtue of tolerance. In the days following, the media will sensationalize the "criminality" of Aboriginal defiance. You will see large pictures of masked warriors but little honest context. As you look with trepidation into the masked faces remember that those of us who wear no masks have been faceless as well, all of our lives. The real news will be in the conversations that you will have in the midst of demonstrations and at the edge of the barricades.

As much as I would like to be with you and my brothers and sisters at Queen's Park at the end of May, I will be here in prison. Throughout my life, I have advocated the path of non-violence as the only means of restoring our cultural integrity and our belonging within creation.
Freedom, at last, is a state of spirit. Even within the walls of this cell, my spirit can heal and grow and under the burden of oppression, all of our spirits can rise up. My spirit, like a seed, can wait throughout the long winter and come to life again when there is room to grow. Non-violence does not mean timidity. Those of us who have chosen a life of non-violence vigorously fight against the oppression and injustice that is sustained by violence. Colonialism, the laws that uphold it, the police actions that take down barricades and disrupt peaceful protests, are violence. Freedom flows around violence like water in a stream flows around a fallen log. Freedom is beautiful like the colours of the earth. Violence is ugly. My spirit will be with all of you at the end of May in peace and friendship.

My immediate thoughts are with my community and the threat of extensive deep core drilling. There is also the humiliation that Ontario is unwilling to allow our community into the decision-making process before further encroachment occurs. And there is the constant anxiety of what an open pit uranium mine will do to our land, our health and the health of our neighbours down stream. My heart aches in the memories of fishing along that river; the blueberry picking on the ridges and the winter solitudes of Arty's trapline. For two hundred years, colonists have been taking out land. I wonder every day when it will stop.

Because I do not have that answer I will begin a fast on May 16 and I will fast until I have an answer. I will not be fasting as a political statement or to extricate some concession from Ontario. In our culture we fast to purify our bodies and free our spirits. We fast in anticipation of a vision of things to come and to prepare ourselves to accept a great challenge. If my fast over the next few weeks brings attention to the defense of our community I will welcome the growing interest. I will also be praying hard for the protection of Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug and all of the communities struggling to survive. If in some small way my fast contributes to the non-violent struggle against Canadian colonialism, then all the better. I have no expectation of the Premier or his Ministers. The gun is to our head not his. I will pray that their hearts and minds become clear and that we will meet soon to work together to find solutions to the mess we are in.

When I began this letter I wrote that you might be shocked, angered and certainly embarrassed. If reading my thoughts made you uncomfortable, I am not sorry. It was my intent to shake you out of your complacency and indifference. Aboriginal people do not want your platitudes. We want change. We want an end to colonialism. We want legislation that protects our rights and recognizes our original jurisdiction. What you did yesterday in the name of justice for Aboriginal people is not enough. No matter what happens now, we will walk tomorrow's road together; you must ask yourself how you have that journey to be.

In the spirit of Peace and Friendship, mutual respect and benefit, I wish you to be well in your work, your play and your dreams.

Robert Lovelace
Retired Chief
Ardoch Algonquin First Nation

Friday, May 16, 2008

Don't wait to cut greenhouse gas emissions: WWF advocate

Keith Stewart's map of the world that highlighted which countries emit the most greenhouses gases couldn't be ignored. "North America is really saying we won't do anything about our energy use until places like (Asia) get their act in order," said Stewart, manager of the Climate Change Campaign with the World Wildlife Fund Canada.

Canada may only have 30 million people but it's the eight largest polluter of greenhouse gases of the 160 countries in the world, he said.

"We can't wait," Stewart said.

"The longer we wait to start bringing emissions down, the faster you have to do it."

Stewart spoke to about 110 people at the Peterborough Public Library last night about the Renewable is Doable plan created by the WWF and the Pembina Institute to deal with the province's future energy supply. It focuses primarily on conserving and renewable energy.

Stewart was invited by the local anti-nuclear energy group Safe and Green Energy.

With the cost of building facilities and the extrication of uranium, nuclear energy is not the answer, Stewart said.

Nuclear energy is one of the major components of the Ontario Power Authority's power supply plan for the next 20 years.

Currently Ontario's energy supply is 50 per cent nuclear, 25 per cent hydro, 20 per cent coal and five per cent natural gas, Stewart said.

The renewable is doable proposal focuses more on renewable energy while taking into account that nuclear is not going away, he said.

Stewart provided data that showed electricity costs and greenhouse gas emissions would be lower under the plan's "green scenario."

Stewart also said that reacting to climate change can create new opportunities - from laid-off factory workers building hybrid or electric cars, to solar panels, to windmills. Using revenue from a carbon tax to retrofit seniors homes so their energy use goes down and at the same time create "green jobs" for people that need them. "Those are the types of solutions we should be aiming for and those are the things we should be looking for," he said.

Audience member Lorna Devan said she wanted to learn more about a "positive approach to renewable energy," which Stewart delivered.

"I see the evidence of climate change all around us and I know that if we don't act, primarily the poorest of the poor are going to suffer in all cultures," said Linda Slavin, who also attended.

Three pillars

Three pillars of World Wildlife Fund Canada's Renewable is Doable platform:

- Stop energy waste, improve efficiency.

- Tap into Ontario's abundant sources of renewable energy: wind, low-impact hydro, biofuels, methane capture at landfill sites and solar power.

- Capture and recycle waste heat and pressure from industrial and commercial operations.

Peterborough Examiner

Monday, May 12, 2008

Toronto Star Article

Today's article in the Toronto Star is an excellent overview of the situation in Ontario in regards to the Mining Act. Please forward it widely.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Prepare for road, rail blockades on May 29: Mohawk activist

OTTAWA — The Mohawk protester who helped shut down a stretch of Ontario's
busiest highway last June says Canadians can expect more disruption on May

That's the date chiefs across the country have circled for another day of
peaceful demonstration to push for urgent action on native poverty. Shawn
Brant, who led highway and railroad blockades near Kingston, Ont., last
June, says placard-waving won't cut it.

(Full article at:

Ont. electricity consumers on hook for Bruce Power cost overruns; critics say

TORONTO - Ontario electricity consumers will be the ones stuck with the bill for escalating costs to re-start a Bruce Power nuclear station, which the company now says will cost 24 per cent more than initially expected, critics warned Thursday.

The nuclear electricity generator said Thursday it now estimates the cost of returning two idle reactor units to service at between $3.1 billion and $3.4 billion, up from an original 2005 cost projection of $2.75 billion.
(Full article at:

Toronto Citizens' Inquiry on Uranium Mining

Saturday, April 26, 2008
Hart House, East Common Room
7 Hart House Circle, University of Toronto
Southwest of Museum subway station
9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Open to the public. Refreshments served.

Scheduled presentations include:

· Chief Paula Sherman, Ardoch Algonquin First Nation
· Donna Dillman, Community Coalition Against Mining Uranium
· Dr. Gordon Edwards, Canadian Coalition for Nuclear Responsibility
· Marion Odell, International Institute of Concern for Public Health
· Rosalia Paiva, International Campaign for Indigenous Dignity
· Lorraine Rekmans, author of This is my Home (re: Eliot Lake uranium mine)
· Rev. Ralph Carl Wushke, Ecumenical Chaplain, University of Toronto
· Mining Watch Canada
· Greenpeace
· … and many more

The issues on the table include (but are not limited to):

· The social, health and environmental costs of uranium mining
· Water issues: tailings dam disasters, water use in mining, tritium
· The use of uranium in weapons, both nuclear and conventional
· Aboriginal land claims, colonialism, and mining on native land
· The Ontario Mining Act and local community opposition to it
· Global criticism of Canadian mining companies and current legislation
· Nuclear energy waste disposal problems and renewable energy alternatives


This Citizens' Inquiry is organized by Students Against Climate Change
in cooperation with the Community Coalition Against Uranium Mining and
the Social Justice Committee of the Graduate Students Union of the
University of Toronto.

Algonquin Highlands supports moratorium on uranium mining!

Yet another township in Haliburton County has added their voice to the
growing chorus of municipalities and townships around Ontario who
support a moratorium on uranium mining! The Township of Algonquin
Highlands has become number 17! We don't have much information as
of yet, but we heard word today by phone that the resolution to
support a moratorium on uranium mining and changes to the Mining Act
was unanimously passed by the council of Algonquin Highlands.

FUME would like to thank the Township of Algonquin Highlands for their
support and consideration of this issue.

We will post more details on our website as they become available.

Christine Atrill & Robin Simpson
(705) 447-3407


Co-Chief Paula Sherman, visited Bob Lovelace on Monday and reports
that he has not been getting the books that people have been sending
to the Lindsay Correctional Centre. The books go straight to the
library and Bob does not have access to this facility. If you would
like to send him photocopies of articles and other material, he can
receive small amounts at a time. Letters are always welcome.

Paula reports that Bob is in good spirits and is still determined to
hold his ground.

Letters of support for Robert Lovelace can be mailed to:

Central East Correctional Centre
541 Hwy 36
Lindsay, Ontario
K9V 4S6


Another insightful day at the Uranium Citizens' Inquiry, this time
held in Peterborough, Ontario, on April 15th.

This particular event, hosted by Anna Petry and Safe And Green Energy
(SAGE), was attended by many people from the Port Hope, Haliburton,
Toronto and the Bancroft area region. Their personal accounts of how
uranium has impacted their community was very moving and at times very
upsetting. Today I have included a submission from Dan Rudka, a former
nuclear energy worker in Port Hope, who bravely gave us a very
personal account of how uranium has impacted his life. It is because
of people such as Dan, that we continue to fight our collective fight.

Thank you to Anna Petry and the many wonderful people of SAGE, for
providing us with a great venue for the Inquiry as well as an
incredible potluck dinner.

The Peterborough panelists included:

Marion Dewar: Ottawa mayor from 1978 - 1985 and a Member of Parliment
from 1986 - 1988. She was a former Chair of Oxfam Canada and the
Ottawa-Carleton Police Services Board. In 2002 she was a recipient of
the Order of Canada. Marion has been politically active and volunteers
her time for many community pursuits.

Fraser McVie: Retired from senior positions in the Canadian justice
system. While there he helped develop modern and humane approaches to
corrections based on rehabilitation and treatment. He has had
extensive experience in international projects and peacekeeping,
including work as an expert with UN Interim Mission in Kosovo.

Professor Robert Paehlke: Trent University professor, Department of
Political Studies and Environmental and Resource Studies. He is a
recipient of the 1997 Trent University Faculty Research Award and has
published widely in the areas of environmentalism and administration.
He has worked with governments and environmental organizations.
Unfortunately Professor Paehlke was not able to attend the Inquiry due
to health related issues.

The following people made presentations:

Mark Winfield, Christine Artill (FUME), Robin Simpson (FUME), Mike
Nickerson (The Sustainability Project), Siren Sounding the Alarm,
Heather Ross (Environment Haliberton), Bruce Cox (Executive Director
of Greenpeace Canada) Co-Chief of the Ardoch Algonquin First Nation,
Professor Paula Sherman, Julie Caron, John Miller (Families Against
Radiation Exposure), Rachel Edge (Trent U Mural Group), Doug Smith
(Green Party of Ontario), Kathryn Langley (SAGE), Dan Rudka, Linda
Harvey (CCAMU), Raging Grannies, Kawartha World Issues Centre, Marion
Burton (Occupational & Environmental Health Coalition), Corinne Mintz,
Carol Winter (SAGE, Ploughshares), Steve Sharpe (NDP), Angel Hamilton,
Marianne Pedretti, Michael Ketemer, Andrew Johncox, Faye More, Tom
Lawson (for himself and on behalf of his daughter Molly), Pat Lawson,
Peter Tabuns (MPP, NDP Environmental Critic), John Etches (SAGE),
Susan Howlett (Kawartha Community Midwives), Roy Brady (SAGE), Richard
Tyssen, Greg Roy, James Wilkes, Frank Morrison and Erin Parker.

The Inquiry has now seen over 120 presentations with another 40 to go
at the Ottawa session.

To see Garth Gullekson's photos of this event go to,

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Mine opponents petition Leal

Peterborough Examiner

More than 35 people presented a petition to Peterborough MPP Jeff Leal yesterday morning protesting uranium mining operations in Sharbot Lake and the treatment of Trent University professor Paula Sherman and her colleague Robert Lovelace.

About 740 signatures were presented to Leal. Protesters gathered out front Leal's office with signs to raise awareness.

Sherman, co-chief of the Ardoch Algonquin First Nation and Trent professor, and Lovelace, a spokesman for Ardoch, aboriginal affairs counsellor at Fleming College and professor at Queen's University, got six months in jail for contempt of court last month in Superior Court of Justice. Sherman opted for a $15,000 fine to be with her children.

Ardoch community members have been angered by mining exploration on their land, which was done without consultation by the provincial government or the mining company, according to their lawyer.

Trent student Paul McCarney, a co-organizer of the petition, said Leal met with the group.

Leal said he will present the petition in the legislature.

"We all agree that there's a need to renew the mining act in the province of Ontario and an act that hasn't been substantially altered in over a 100 years," he said.

Friday, March 21, 2008


If you'd like to upgrade the prison library and improve the reading list for Political Prisoner Professor Bob Lovelace, here's how…

What to do:
Put your books in a box. Write ATTENTION LIBRARIAN on the top.

Mail to:
Central East Correctional Centre
541 Highway 36
Lindsay Ontario K9V 4S6

Rules must be followed or your parcel will be rejected. All books must be SOFT COVER except current bestseller fiction.

1. No violent topics, especially no violence toward women or children. No serial killers, NO true crime, no gore and mayhem.
2. CURRENT BEST SELLERS. May be hardcover; Tom Clancy, Grisham and other best selling current FICTION.
3. CLASSIC NOVELS and CURRENT FICTION novels or poetry. Bob is likely to enjoy these. e.g. Dickens, T.S. Eliot, Twain, Browning, Woolf. and new authors.
4. ADVENTURE. Jack London, mountain climbers, etc.
5. TEEN books. The Little Prince, Jonathon Livingston Seagull and other uplifting or inspiring FICTION stories.
7. FANTASY. Harry Potter, dragons, Camelot, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.
8. No romance, NO non-fiction, no science fiction, dark and gloomy, or westerns needed.

Fiction novels by or about people of color would be excellent. Cry the Beloved Country for instance or any of the wonderful new novels coming out of the Middle East, India and the Orient. One Hundred Years of Solitude is a great Hispanic novel. So keep those in mind. Bob has done a lot of volunteer work to improve prisons. He will be really touched we help him, but even more pleased that your donations will improve the library for everyone. Many prisoners, but not all, have limited education so donate a reading range if you can.

Whether you send one book or ten, it's wonderful, and thank you.

This area should have reliable source of drinking water

Peterborough Examiner

As climate change creates more and more environmental refugees, and shortage of pure drinking water becomes a global problem, I had thought of Peterborough as a good place to be, with its reliable supply of drinking water flowing to us from the north.

The Ontario government's complicity with Frontenac Ventures, the company planning to drill for uranium at Sharbot Lake, shows that, in their desire to "go" with nuclear energy and thus encourage production of uranium, they have completely overlooked both the rights of the aboriginal people directly concerned, and the long-term interests of all of us.

Uranium mining results in piles of tailings which leach radioactive substances into adjacent waterways.

Mining at Sharbot Lake would pollute water through Lake Ontario and the St.Lawrence to the sea.

Mining in the Bancroft area, which is also being considered, would permanently and irreversibly pollute Peterborough's water supply.

We have better alternatives to nuclear power, which in any case would not last forever. We do not have better alternatives for our drinking-water supply.

A government which allows profit-hungry companies to invade and destroy territory, which in this case is being claimed and used by first-nations people, leading to possible genocide of these people, needs to face relentless opposition from concerned citizens.

There has been opposition, and more is planned. For example, about 100 people stood, in the worst blizzard of the year, on March 8, in front of PCVS, and listened to moving speeches.

The police showed up, but the press did not.

I have seen only one article in The Examiner on this important local issue, -on Feb.22, headed ''Fleming Counsellor Jailed, Trent Prof Fined'".

Paula Sherman and Robert Lovelace were labelled criminals, which made them newsworthy.


Robert Lovelace is in jail and Paula Sherman has been fined $15,000, apparently for upholding Algonquin law and protecting the vital interests of all of us, at great personal sacrifice. Since when has peaceful opposition to injustice been a crime in Canada? If it is a crime, then we are a Fascist state.

This issue is one piece of the rape of this planet, for resources, which is going on worldwide.

Development of the Alberta tar-sands is another, but this is closer to home. It is our business. If we let it happen, we can look to a very bleak future.

We need reform of the Ontario Mining Act that allows this trespass. We need to demand that Robert Lovelace be released from jail immediately, and that Paula Sherman's fine be revoked.

Dalton McGuinty must reconsider his plans to pursue an expensive, dangerous, and temporary energy future for Ontario, which diverts government funding from the real, permanent, alternatives.

Let us prove that we are free and democratic and we care about the future of all our citizens.

And let us expect our media to give fair coverage to what is, at present, the most important unfolding issue in this area.

We hear plenty about celebrities and criminals, entrepreneurs and sports, but, it seems, issues of real substance somehow get filtered out.

In a democracy, the public must know what is going on.

Jenny Carter

Hillcrest Avenue

Overhaul to Ontario mining act expected

Peterborough This Week
Date: 2008-03-14
By Lauren Gilchrist
Mary McGillis is appalled at how Trent professor Paula Sherman and Queen's University professor Bob Lovelace are being treated for acting on their beliefs.
Prof. Sherman has been charged with contempt of court, sentenced to six months in jail and fined $15,000 by a Superior Court Justice for protesting against uranium mining on native lands. Her colleague, Prof. Lovelace, not only a Queen's University professor but also an Aboriginal counsellor at Sir Sandford Fleming College, was also jailed for six months and fined $25,000.
“I'm really disgusted,” says Ms McGillis, who has a daughter that attends Trent University.
She notes people have to inform themselves about what is happening to Ms Sherman and Mr. Lovelace and about uranium mining in Ontario.
“It's critical for people to stand up for what they believe in,” she explains.
“These people [Ms Sherman and Mr. Lovelace] that are out there are trying to do something positive. If we ignore this they [the government] are going to do uranium mining and our watershed could be affected. I really believe if good people don't stand up bad things are going to happen,” she says.
Ms Sherman, a single mother and co-Chief of the Ardoch Algonquin First Nation, negotiated with the court to avoid jail time. As part of the agreement she cannot participate in, or advocate that others participate in, protests against uranium mining on native lands near Sharbot Lake. The protest and blockade began over concerns that the provincial government had failed to provide adequate consultation with the aboriginal communities before issuing mining exploration permits. Both Ms Sherman and Mr. Lovelace argue the right of aboriginal communities to this consultation has been upheld by the Supreme Court of Canada and the First Nations Law was not respected in the court room.
The Trent University Faculty Association (TUFA) has put their weight behind Ms Sherman and formally condemned the decision by the court. The board has also made a $1,000 contribution to the defence fund established to support Ms Sherman.
The Community Coalition Against Mining Uranium (CCAMU) states that several areas of Ontario and Western Quebec have been staked for uranium exploration in the past two years. They say some of this is private property and some is Crown land, which is causing concern from both aboriginal and non-aboriginal communities. They argue that uranium mining in these areas carries a potential for contamination of three major river systems as well as air-born contamination of areas where people live and farm.
Marilyn Crawford describes what is happening to Ms Sherman and Mr. Lovelace as “heavy-handed” and “unjust.”
“To silence anyone who protests against what they want to do is unbelievable,” says Ms Crawford, with the Community Coalition Against Mining Uranium and Mining Watch Canada.
“I'm not surprised and I don't think they [Ms Sherman and Mr. Lovelace] are surprised either. But I don't think the general public is aware that this is what's happening around the world when Canadian companies go in to explore.”
Ms Crawford says the Ontario Mining Act has a number of flaws. One of her major concerns with the act are the rules of entry regarding where mining can take place, the consent that is needed and the notice given to the landowner.
“They need more than notice,” she says.
“I've been working on this for seven years to try and get public awareness about what is wrong with the act. It's been a challenge but it's been a good fight. But I know we are going to win this.”
Local MPP Jeff Leal foresees the Ontario Mining Act getting a major review in either the spring or fall session of parliament.
“The mining act in Ontario hasn't had a major overhaul in about 100 years, there's no question, we've said so publicly,” he explains.
“Mike Gravelle, minister of Northern Development and Mines, has certainly indicated it's timely the mining act in Ontario have a significant overhaul.”
MPP Leal notes there is a tremendous amount of prospecting and mining going on in Ontario today.
“We're very, very aware of the potential repercussions of some mining activities,” he says.
“With this kind of level of activity I think the responsible thing to do is to overhaul the mining act in Ontario.
Ms Crawford notes the situation at Sharbot Lake is a microcosm of everything that is wrong with the mining act.
“They [people] can protest. Speak out, become informed that this is happening not just in Canada but in Ontario, it's happening right here,” she says.
The Community Coalition Against Uranium Mining is organizing a citizens inquiry into the Impacts of the Uranium Cycle. In Peterborough, the public hearing takes place April 15 and 16 at Sadlier House on George Street. The forum runs from 1 to 5 p.m. and 6 to 9 p.m. The deadline to apply to make a presentation in Peterborough is April 1. Presentations can be made in person to the inquiry and can include written material, poems, plays, skits and songs. To pre-register e-mail or call (613) 259-9988.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

3 Sharbot Lake uranium protesters avoid jail

Tuesday, March 18, 2008
CBC News
Three people accused of protesting at a prospective uranium mining site in eastern Ontario in defiance of two court injunctions will not go to jail.

The three protesters appeared before Justice Douglas Cunningham Tuesday in the Ontario Superior Court of Justice to face contempt of court charges in connection with the occupation last year of a property near Sharbot Lake, about 60 kilometres north of Kingston.

Charges against two of the protesters were withdrawn.

A third protester agreed to stay away from the property in question in exchange for avoiding jail time.

Protesters from the Shabot Obaadjiwan and Ardoch Algonquin First Nations began occupying the property last summer, with support from some local protesters who are not aboriginal people. They were trying to stop the mining exploration company Frontenac Ventures Corp. from doing test drilling for uranium at the site, which the Algonquins claim as their land.

The charges were laid after the company successfully applied for court injunctions barring protesters from the property.

In February, Ardoch co-chiefs Paula Sherman and Robert Lovelace were sentenced to six months in jail after being found guilty of contempt of court for defying the injunctions. They were also fined $15,000 and $25,000 respectively.

After being sentenced, Sherman agreed to stop participating in protests to avoid going to jail.

Monday, March 10, 2008


Ardoch Algonquin First Nation is a federally-unrecognized community and so
does not receive funding from any government. They urgently need support
for costs related to these trials. They are asking supporters to please
send donations, made out to: "Chris Reid, in trust for the Ardoch
Algonquin First Nation" at the address below:

Christopher M. Reid
Barrister & Solicitor
154 Monarch Park Ave.
Toronto, ON M4J 4R6
Tel: (416) 466-9928
Fax: (416) 466-1852

For More Information See:

WHY GREEN ISN'T ENOUGH: An Anti-Racist Anti-Colonial Environmentalism Conference

March 14 & 15, 2008
Peterborough Public Library Auditorium (345 Aylmer Street North)

The conference is free and open to all members of the public. No
registration is required. Resource booklets on anti-oppressive
environmental activism will be available to conference participants
(suggested donation: $5). Everyone is welcome to attend!


7:00-9:00 pm: Peterborough Public Library Auditorium
Keynote Address: "Stories Less Told: Environmental Justice and Racism in Canada"
A panel discussion with:
*Andil Gosine (York University), author of "Environmental Justice and
Racism in Canada: An Introduction"
*Karen Okamoto, "Environmental Justice and Racism in Canada" contributor

9:00 pm-1:00 am: The Red Dog (189 Hunter Street West)
Beats 4 Justice! Fundraiser for the Ardoch Algonquin First Nation
A night of spoken word, Afro-soul, down-tempo electronica, and beats
~ Featuring:
*DJ Sheena
*The Unity Singers
*Dave Hudson
*Hesper Philip-Chamberlain
$10 waged/$5 unwaged, or pay-as-much-as-you-can

SATURDAY, MARCH 15: Peterborough Public Library Auditorium

Welcoming remarks

"Environmental Racism and the Seasonal Agricultural Workers Program"
A panel discussion with:
*Chris Ramsaroop (Justicia for Migrant Workers)
*Janet McLaughlin (PhD Candidate, Anthropology, University of Toronto)
*Allan, participant in the Seasonal Agricultural Workers Program

Refreshment break

"Impacts of Energy Extraction and Climate Change on Indigenous Peoples"
A panel discussion with:
*Paula Sherman (Co-Chief, Ardoch Algonquin First Nation)
*Leanne Simpson (Past director of Trent University's Indigenous
Environmental Studies Program)
*Clayton Thomas-Muller (Indigenous Environmental Network)

Refreshment break

"Where Do We Go From Here? Organizing for Structural Change"
A workshop with:
*Clayton Thomas-Muller (Indigenous Environmental Network)
*Chris Ramsaroop (Justicia for Migrant Workers)


Sponsored and supported by: Community and Race Relations Committee of
Peterborough; CUPE Local 3908; Fair Trade Trent; Frost Centre for
Canadian Studies and Native Studies; Kawartha World Issues Centre; New
Canadians Centre Peterborough; OPIRG-Peterborough;
Peterborough-Kawarthas Chapter of the Council of Canadians;
Peterborough Coalition Against Poverty; Sustainable Trent; Roy Brady;
Theatre Trent; Trent Central Student Association; Trent Centre for
Community-Based Education; Trent Environmental Students Society; Trent
University Faculty Association; Trent University's Canadian Studies,
Environmental and Resource Studies, Politics, Sociology, and Women's
Studies Departments; Trent University's Champlain, Gzowski, Lady
Eaton, Otonabee, and Traill College Cabinets; Trent University
Graduate Student Association; and Trent University's Environmental
Issues and Women's Issues Commissioners.

For more information, email, visit the
conference website at, or
contact the Kawartha World Issues Centre: (705) 748-1680.

Saturday, March 8, 2008

On the SUMP e-mail list?

If you're on the list (or asked Alissa or Anna to be on our lists) and haven't been getting e-mails from us please add us to your address book and check your Spam folder, we're getting a lot of bounced messages, especially from Hotmail.


Friday, March 7, 2008

Why Bob Lovelace is in jail; A message is being sent to mining companies: Ontario is open for business

The Kingston Whig- Standard
I know Bob Lovelace as a soft-spoken and self-reliant neighbour, devoted father and dedicated Queen's University teacher admired by his students and colleagues. He's the kind of guy who constructs a log house in the woods north of Kingston with his own skill and sweat; builds a box planter at the local swimming spot and keeps it stocked with marigolds and petunias; and provides venison for a potluck supper. He's as innately confrontational as a panda bear.
Yet much of the public knows Bob Lovelace as a nominally militant aboriginal prisoner now serving a six-month jail sentence and facing cumulative personal fines of nearly $400,000 for contempt of court. His transgression? Refusing to obey a judicial order not to continue his peaceful blockade at a proposed uranium mine site on lands Algonquin First Nations have never ceded title to under any prior treaty or land claim settlement.
Yet, as even the mine promoter's lawyer has admitted in court hearings, there is a vanishingly small chance a uranium mine will ever get built at the headwaters of the Mississippi River northwest of Sharbot Lake. Compared to other deposits in Saskatchewan, Australia, South Africa and Asia, the ore is laughably low-grade, and the cost to mine fatally high.
So how did it come to this?
In effect, Bob is in jail because he has quietly, but implacably, declined to concede that a provincial court has the ultimate authority to decide what happens on lands his Algonquin forebears have used without ecological abuse for thousands of years.
A key point is that these are not private lands in dispute. The collision has occurred because. for more than a century. Ontario governments have blithely assumed that all provincial lands are solely entrusted to it, and are thus subject to mining laws that allow any prospector or com-pany, from anywhere, to stake out land and claim any mineral wealth below. Without asking anyone else's permission.
In this case, the provincial Ministry of Natural Resources handed out the permits to a fledgling outfit called Frontenac Ventures, and the com-pany maintains that it can drill for uranium with the law on its side. Without First Nation approval.
On this, the company, a provincial court and the cabinet of Dalton McGuinty tacitly agree. That's why my neighbour is in prison as a kind of conscientious objector, his impoverished First Nation is facing additional cumulative fines of nearly $400,000, and Frontenac Ventures has the sanction to drill for uranium deposits that will never prove profitable.
This makes no sense at all - unless the real issue here is far larger and more deceptive than a puny, potentially speculative mine play that may capitalize on gullible or greedy investors fixated on the spiking world price of uranium, and the venerable flim-flam tactic of selling them sizzle instead of steak.
My bet is that the Ontario government knows - just as well as Canada's major uranium com-panies know - that eastern Ontario is essentially bereft of profitable deposits. Compared to the mammoth, rich, easy-to mine uranium reserves in northern Saskatchewan, which are known as "elephants" in industry parlance, those from Sharbot Lake to Bancroft to Elliot Lake are like scattered mice.
Perversely, because these Ontario deposits would yield far few ounces of uranium per tonne of ore mined, the volume of radioactively contaminated waste rock and other lethal pollutants would be far greater. So the public pollution risk would be high, and the financial reward small to non-existent for a private company.
The Ontario government is not blind to these facts. Or to the past legacy of uranium mining at Elliot Lake, which left more than 100 million tonnes of dangerous waste tailings for posterity, and desecrated the downstream Serpent River watershed. So what is really going on?
I suspect that the Ontario government is determined to assure the bigger, richer, more experienced mining interests, and international investors, that Ontario is a place where they can come and make serious money by mining not uranium but diamonds, gold, platinum, nickel, copper and zinc - with minimal hindrance. And because most of that potential mineral wealth is in northern Ontario, where most of the population is aboriginal, the right signals need to be sent. To mining companies, the Dalton McGuinty message is: Ontario is wide open for business. To First Nations it is: get on board, or out of the way - or go to jail.
As evidence of this, consider that the lawyer for Frontenac Ventures also represents a different mining company that wants to develop a platinum prospect near Big Trout Lake in northwest Ontario, despite determined First Nation opposition. There, aboriginal leaders are also facing, like Bob Lovelace, potential imprisonment and crippling fines. The lawyer representing Bob Lovelace also acts for the Big Trout community. So the confrontation is identical, except the mineral at the heart of the showdown is different.
There are hints that the platinum mine promoter, like Frontenac Ventures, might be willing to withdraw from that mine play if the Ontario government effectively pays it to go away. If this occurs, then it will be Ontario taxpayers who end up being mined for millions. not uranium or platinum deposits.
This would be bad for everyone except the victorious speculators, and the lawyers collecting Bay Street fees for their artful advice. It would prompt other speculators to try the same trick. And it would leave Bob Lovelace with a contempt of court conviction, facing a lifetime sentence of paying court-imposed fines, and his family wrenched by trauma. (To its great credit, Queen's University has pledged to restore his teaching post when he is released.)
In the end, I believe Bob Lovelace will be vindicated because, largely forgotten in this whole sinister drama, is the likelihood that he has the highest law of the land on his side. The Supreme Court of Canada has ruled, after a century of plaintive petitions from aboriginal leaders from coast to coast to coast, that they collectively hold certain fundamental rights to land and resources, to First Nation cultural preservation, and to be consulted before those may be put at risk.
Uranium ore poses just such a risk. In spades. Once unearthed, it constantly emits invisible but deadly radioactive particles that respect nothing. These can bio-accumulate indiscriminately in countless plants and animals, effectively gaining lethality over time because nothing in nature can destroy them. Many of these radioactive particles mimic beneficial body chemicals like calcium or iodine, are especially perilous to children and women of child-bearing age, and can impair the human gene pool.
And finally, because the only two uses of uranium are for nuclear reactors that covert it into other forms of even more lethal, long-lived radioactive wastes, or for nuclear weapons, a strong case can be made that all uranium, everywhere, is too dangerous to be mined by anyone. Period. And that it is any sensible citizen's civic duty to prevent such future harm.
If it goes that far, I suspect that some day the Supreme Court of Canada will rule that the rights of the Algonquins were violated when the Ontario government issued uranium exploration permits on unceded lands without authentic consultation and consent.
Meanwhile, it is tragic that while my thoughtful neighbour remains in a Lindsay jail an eternity away from his kids, none of these biological, human health and legal facts seem to be troubling the mind of our premier or his minister of aboriginal affairs. Judging by their deafening silence, for them Bob Lovelace apparently does not exist.
- Paul McKay is a former Whig-Standard reporter and the author of a biography of business magnate Stephen Roman and the Elliot Lake uranium industry.

A message from Peter Tabuns (Ontario NDP Critic on Energy and the Environment)

Thank you for coming to this very important rally. Your support is welcome and appreciated by the Ontario NDP.
This is a very sad time in the history of Ontario. The McGuinty government stands in contempt of its responsibility to hold meaningful consultations with First Nations on activities affecting their traditional lands and yet, First Nation Leaders, like Robert Lovelace and Paula Sherman, are being made to suffer the consequences. The McGuinty government in its mad dash for more nuclear power has failed to consult with Ontarians and has exempted its own nuclear plans from the provincial environmental assessment process. Now the McGuinty government is failing to undertake meaningful consultations with the Ardoch First Nation while letting a uranium exploration company run roughshod over the Ardoch First Nation's rights. Clearly, this is a government committed to the nuclear industry at any cost. There is a very disturbing trend developing across the province, whereby the constitutional rights of First Nations are being shamelessly violated by the McGuinty government.
New Democrats agree with Amnesty International and others that the McGuinty government must stop breaching its own legal obligations to First Nations and to the people of Ontario. We need an immediate moratorium on uranium mining in Eastern Ontario so meaningful consultations with the Ardoch First Nation are undertaken and a mutually acceptable resolution is reached.
In Solidarity
Peter Tabuns, MPP


Wednesday, March 26, 7pm at Sadleir House (751 George St)

The Ontario Public Interest Research Group (OPIRG) and Amnesty International
 will be presenting a movie event at Sadleir House featuring the movie
 Uranium that explores the consequences of uranium mining in Canada.
 It examines the profound toxic and radioactive waste environmental
 hazards associated with uranium mining, and exposes the mining
 companies' brutal violation of the traditional economic and spiritual
 lives of many aboriginal people.


Trent faculty supporting legal defence for native professor convicted of contempt of court

Peterborough Examiner
The Trent University Faculty Association has publicly declared its support for Prof. Paula Sherman and donated $1,000 to her defence fund.
Sherman, co-chief of the Ardoch Algonquin First Nation and Trent professor, and Robert Lovelace, a spokesman for Ardoch, aboriginal affairs counsellor at Fleming College and professor at Queen’s University, were both sentenced to six months in jail for contempt of court last month in Superior Court of Justice.
Sherman took a $15,000 penalty instead of going to jail so she could stay with her children.
Ardoch community members have been angered by mining exploration on their land, which was done without consultation by the provincial government or the mining company, according to their lawyer.
The faculty association formally condemned the court decision Monday.
In a release, it stated that “the treatment of its member violates her right to public protest as a citizen and obstructs her academic freedom which includes the right to criticize without the threat of reprisal or discrimination.”
The faculty association also contributed $1,000 to Sherman’s defence fund.
"It's important for us to come forward to support our faculty particularly when they're carrying out their duties that could be interpreted as an extension of what they do as faculty members," faculty association president Susan Wurtele told The Examiner.
The university has also organized a "teach in" for next week, she said. Led by Sherman, it will be an opportunity to update faculty about the situation, so they can better explain it to their students, Wurtele said.
Chris Reid, who represents Sherman and Lovelace, said the faculty association’s support isn’t surprising. Lovelace is also being supported by faculty at Queen’s University, he said.
“The faculty association is a union of sorts and unions have very often been targets of injunctions and contempt of court motions.... They fully understand an order like this and how it’s used to, in some cases, to suppress dissent and muzzle free speech,” he said.
Reid said there are number of fundraising campaigns organized for Sherman and Lovelace.
So far his office has received $2,500 in trust, he said.
The money is primarily going to families who have been fined for protesting, Reid said.
Reid also said an announcement will be made next week regarding an appeal.
“There is an ambivalence about the Ardoch Algonquins.... It’s not a simple issue of whether to appeal or not because they don’t even feel they should be in the Ontario Court system,” he said.
A rally in support of Sherman and Lovelace, scheduled for tomorrow, is expected to draw hundreds of people.
Organized by the Ontario Public Interest Research Group Peterborough, the rally starts at noon in Confederation Square. It will go through downtown, with a stop at MPP Jeff Leal’s office.
Wurtele said she and other Trent faculty members plan on attending.
For more information about the rally contact
Sherman could not be reached for comment yesterday.

Uranium & Sharbot Lake on Trent Radio

These links will only be good for a week so check out these shows if you missed them live:

Peterborough Women's Hour
KWIC Radio

Theater Troupe!


Peterborough is starting up a theater troupe to facilitate building awareness around Uranium Mining, focusing on Sharbot Lake, KI, Haliburton and Bancroft.
Come join! This will be a loose coalition, and new members are always welcome.
We will be making masks this Sunday at 1pm, contact Monica if you are interested at

Keep an eye out for us on the streets of Peterborough :)


Mossy Sprite

Monday, March 3, 2008

Stop Uranium Mining Peterborough

A central e-mail address and announcement list has been created for Peterborough uranium mining moratorium news and events Please send us your updates and announcements. To be added to this list just drop us a line:

Citizen's Enquiry

Call for Submissions 
February 28, 2008 
 The Ontario government has a duty to protect its citizens and has failed in that duty.  In the absence of action from the McGuinty government, The Community Coalition Against Mining Uranium (CCAMU), in conjunction with a number of non-government organizations* initiated a Citizen’s Inquiry on December 13, 2007. 
The Citizen’s Inquiry on the Impacts of the Uranium Cycle will be open to the public and we invite your participation.  Public Hearings, before a panel and chairperson, are scheduled to take place throughout April, 2008 in Sharbot Lake, Kingston, Peterborough and Ottawa.   
The Inquiry aims to look at the full cycle: from staking; through to the exploration and mining of uranium; to enrichment; power generation; weapons potential, and to spent fuel rod disposal.  Everyone is welcome to participate, whether an expert or simply interested in, or affected by, the issue.  We are looking for commentary on community, health and social justice issues and the environment. 
Presentations made in person to the Inquiry can include written material, power point presentations, audio and video formats, poems, plays, skits and songs. Presentations will be limited to 10 minutes in length. Written material accompanying the presentation, or submitted separately, will be incorporated into the final document and can be viewed online at: 
Preregistration (at or at the contact listed below) is required.  Check the website for more information and for deadlines in regard to the venue of your choice.  In addition to submissions received as a result of a presentation, we welcome written or electronic submissions of any length, which can be forwarded until May 1st to: or to the contact info below. 
Some History
Several areas of eastern Ontario and western Quebec have been staked for uranium exploration in the last 2 years. Some of this is private property; some is Crown land. This has caused grave concern amongst both the aboriginal and the non-native communities. Uranium mining in these areas carries a potential for contamination of three major river systems, two of them upstream of Ottawa, as well as air-born contamination of population centres and agricultural lands. 
The Ardoch and Shabot Obaadjiwaan First Nations have taken action to stop drilling on their ancestral lands north of Sharbot Lake, and have been joined by many hundreds of non-native citizens concerned about their communities. 
Nine local Municipal Councils and two County Councils have passed resolutions petitioning the Ontario government for a moratorium on uranium mining in eastern Ontario. They are joined by the two First Nations communities, several not-for-profit organizations and thousands of Ontario residents who have signed petitions.
About the Community Coalition Against Mining Uranium
CCAMU is a grassroots organization that supports a moratorium on the exploration and mining of uranium in Eastern Ontario. We have branches in Ottawa, Carleton Place, Kingston and Peterborough and many thousands of people participating in events, rallies, letter writing campaigns and actions. More information about CCAMU is available at our website: . 
The group was formed in response to the proposed exploration for and development of a uranium mine north of Sharbot Lake and upriver of Ottawa. The local First Nation communities have taken action to stop the drilling on their ancestral lands. We are supporting them in this and their efforts are appreciated. We are making history with our joint action. 
CCAMU members are projecting their in-kind contributions to be in excess of 1,000 hours to plan, organize, promote and run the event, and deliver the report. The inquiry budget is $30,500.  We are actively looking for financial support to help with these costs.  Cheques, made out to “Uranium Mining Moratorium Fund” with the notation that they are to be used for the Citizen’s Inquiry can be mailed to the address below.  This account is administered and audited by the Tay Legal Defence Fund 
We look forward to your participation in the Inquiry.  Please don’t hesitate to contact us with any questions you may have. 
Donna Dillman
For the Inquiry Committee 
Contact info for submissions and registrations:
2799 McDonald’s Corners Rd.
Lanark, ON
K0G 1K0 
*(Green Peace, MiningWatch Canada, Canadian Coalition for Nuclear Responsibility, Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment, David Suzuki Foundation, Voice of Women, Sierra Club of Canada and Students Against Climate Change)

Trent Professor’s Protest Results in Contempt of Court of Conviction
Thursday, February 28, 2008
In response to a court decision to convict Trent University professor Paula Sherman on charges of contempt of court regarding the continuation of a blockade at a uranium mine near Sharbot Lake, some members of the Trent University community have expressed concern about the conviction and the size of the fine Sherman was required to pay to avoid jail time.
Professor Sherman was released without jail time but was required to pay a $15,000 fine. Professor Robert Lovelace of Queen’s University was also convicted and sentenced to six months in jail and fined $25,000.
“We know that some members of the Trent and Queen’s University communities are very concerned about these developments,” said Bonnie Patterson, President and Vice-Chancellor.
The President stressed that, “Trent University has already publicly affirmed its support for Professor Sherman by stating that her employment is not in jeopardy as a result of this conviction. I have also received calls of support for Professor Sherman from Trent students confirming that Paula is a highly valued academic in the Trent community.”
President Patterson reasserted Trent University’s commitment to those provisions of the collective agreement that speak to the importance of academic freedom. The agreement affirms the ability of faculty to execute their legal rights as private citizens to engage in advocacy activities, with no sanction by the University.
The President adds that the reports indicate Professor Sherman was exercising her legal right to protest. “In participating in this protest, Professor Sherman is protected from any penalties by the University,” said Patterson.   She added that it is entirely expected that faculty will serve as advocates outside of the University on issues that are important to them.

Many people e-mailed Patterson asking her to issue a statement of SUPPORT for Prof Sherman. If you, like many people, think this press release does not reflect this e-mail President Bonnie Patterson ( and copy it to your student association: full-time & school of education (, parttime (, grads ( , & alumni

Day of Action!


Along with the other lobbying work we have been doing, we are using this one day to flood the offices of Premier Dalton McGuinty, Minister of Aboriginal Affairs Michael Bryant, and your local MPP. This date is important as the Legislature will be sitting on the 17th and the next round of sentencing in Frontenac's injunction will be on the 18th.

Dalton McGuinty - 613-736-9573
Michael Bryant - 416-656-0943
Jeff Leal (MPP Peterborough Riding) - 705-742-3777

WHEN: between 9am - 5pm Friday, March 14 (If that doesn't work for you, anytime is better than never).

WHAT TO EXPECT: These number will take you directly to their constituency offices, where their assistants will either pick up, or you will be put through to voicemail. You can leave a personal message or voicemail recording for their assistants to pass on to them. If you get a busy signal it likely means that someone else is calling in on the same issue. Wait a couple minutes and try again.

WHAT TO SAY: Identify who you are and where you are from. State that you are leaving a message for the Premier, Minister or MPP, and express your support for a moratorium on uranium exploration and mining, and demand that fair and meaningful consultations with affected First Nations be started immediately.
--> Bonus points: Talk about a personal experience that proves to you why addressing this issue is so important and urgent.

An Evening with Dr. Michael D. Mehta

Fri, Mar 7, 7:00 pm


 Peterborough Public Library, 345 Aylmer Street North
 Admission: Free (donations accepted)
 Brought to you by SAGE.  For more information, email:
 Or visit

KWIC Radio

Wednesday, March 5, 1pm at Trent Radio 92.7fm or

Join the Kawartha World Issues Centre, with hostesses, Jo Hayward Haines and Mariana Marx, and special guests, as they explore and analyse issues of vital importance
to our world today. Great music, great won't want to
miss it! Tune in the 1st Wednesday of each month from 1 to 2pm at 92.7
fm. Topic for March 5th.- Update on Anti-Uranium mining campaign and
Ardoch First Nations.

If you can't listen live check out

No Uranium Show

Tues. Mar. 4, 8:30pm, at The Spill (414 George N)

 This show is meant to raise awareness and funds in support of Paula
 Sherman and Bob Lovelace, as well as the Ardoch Algonquin First Nation
 and broader community members in their opposition to a uranium mine
 near Sharbot Lake, Ontario.

 All funds raised will go directly to support the legal defense fund
 for the Ardoch. There will also be petitions to sign and letters to
 send to members of the Ontario government. Please come out to support
 these individuals and communities. We can all play a part in
 protecting human rights, the environment, and our future. Small
 actions can go a long way.

 The show is FREE, with a suggested donation of $5, or PWYC. The fines
 placed on the Ardoch community, Paula Sherman, and Bob Lovelace
 collectively amount to $50,000. This means that any small contribution
 from each of us can help significantly.


 - The Daniel Huizenga Band (featuring Paul)
 - Nicholas Keays
 - Vin Heney

 *with special guests TBA!*

 Contact or

Info Tabling At Trent:

Mon. Mar 3 - Wed. Mar 5, 9am-4pm at Trent University

 To get the word out at Trent and get more signatures on our petitions
 and letters sent to politicians there will be an info table at Trent
 Monday - Wednesday We need people to staff this table! If you have an
 hour or more to spare during these days please volunteer your time! If
 you can't staff the table but are still on campus, please stop by and
 say "Hi!".
 Contact: Lan Ahn at



The following is a copy of the court transcript.

Disclaimer: You are solely responsible for your use of the contents
in this newsletter. You should not rely on the contents as legal
information nor as authoritative. Users should verify the accuracy and
applicability of any content before acting on it.

CCAMU or its individual members, do not guarantee, or make any
warranty, express or implied, that the content is current, accurate,
complete or reliable. CCAMU or its individual members, is not
responsible for any damage, however caused, which results directly or
indirectly from your use of the content of this newsletter. CCAMU or
its individual members, assumes no legal liability or responsibility
for the content of this newsletter, whatsoever.

Friday, February 15, 2008
Cunningham, J. (Orally):

Robert Lovelace and Paula Sherman, would you please stand. Do you
have anything to say at this time before I pass sentence?


Thank you. You may be seated. My unpleasant task this morning is to
sentence Robert Lovelace, Paula Sherman, and the A.A.F.N., in
connection with their admitted contempt of orders of Thomson, J.,
dated August 27, 2007, and of myself, dated September 27, 2007.

Harold Perry, for reasons outlined by his counsel on the record
yesterday, has given a permanent undertaking, the essence of which is
that he will fully comply with my September 27th, 2007 order, that he
will neither counsel, engage in, nor solicit further unlawful activity
at the subject property, and that he will forthwith remove his cabin
from Highway 509 and that it will be placed nowhere near the vicinity
of the entrance gate to the subject property, or the Robertsville

Furthermore, he undertakes not to bring any motions in connection
with my order until after contempt number two has been fully dealt

On the strength of this solemn undertaking, the moving party, F.V.C.,
will not be seeking sanctions against Mr. Perry for his acknowledged

I now turn to the remaining contemnors. Robert Lovelace, who gave
evidence, evidence that Mr. Reid and Mr. Lovelace confirmed was fully
supported by Mr. Perry and Ms. Sherman, testified that his contempt,
and theirs, was not only admitted but would continue should F.V.C.
proceed to bring drilling equipment onto the subject property.

Mr. Lovelace, who fully understood the notion of purging one's
contempt, stated he could not abide by the terms of my order because
to do so would be to put him in conflict with Algonquin law, more
precisely, the moratorium declared by elder William Commanda.

Unlike Chief Doreen Davis and Earl Badour Senior, and indeed at the
last moment, Harold Perry, neither Mr. Lovelace nor Ms. Sherman could
bring themselves to comply with an order of this court.

On their behalf, Mr. Reid spoke of their frustration with the Ontario
government, the Mining Act, and the courts process. He said their
disobedience was a last resort, that these people had respect for the
law and that it pained them to be doing this. He agreed, however,
that none of this amounts to a defence to their contemptuous
behaviour, behaviour, that although being prosecuted civilly, comes
perilously close to criminal contempt.

While I can appreciate their sense of frustration, unfortunately, to
adopt self-help in these circumstances flaunts not only my order, the
order of Thomson, J., but more significantly, the rule of law.

Despite what Mr. Reid may say about the indifference of the Ontario
government causing us to be here, it is the contemptuous conduct of
his clients that has caused this proceeding to be initiated. Not only
are Mr. Lovelace and Ms. Sherman unrepentant, they have made it
perfectly clear their illegal conduct will likely continue. Needless
to say, there has been no apology.

In any consideration of sentencing, certain principles come into
play. Here the principles of punishment, specific and general
deterrence, must be in the forefront. Not only must these individuals
be deterred from committing further unlawful acts, a clear, strong
message must be sent to all who might be contemplating similar action.

This motion is brought pursuant to Rule 60.11 and 60.12. The
provisions of Rule 60.11(5) are very broad, once, as here, a finding
of contempt has been made.

In complete defiance of the orders of this court, dated August 27 and
September 27, 2007, the A.A.F.N., Robert Lovelace, and Paula Sherman,
have not only engaged in a full scale occupation of the Clarendon
site, they have, as leaders of their community, counselled and
encouraged others to do so as well.

Compliance with orders of this court is not optional. I am persuaded
that the illegal activity at the Clarendon site is not limited to the
dates set out in the earlier agreement read into the record. Indeed,
it was occurring as recently as early February 2008, when masked First
Nation members at the site made it perfectly clear they would
physically block any drill from getting onto the property. Mr.
Lovelace's evidence confirms this intention.

As many of the cases cited by the plaintiff have reasoned, to permit
court orders to be wilfully disobeyed would only lead to anarchy.
Many Canadians daily, following the rule of law, turn to the courts
for relief. When one ignores orders of our courts, or takes the law
into one's own hands, respect for our court system evaporates, and our
entire society suffers.

As my colleague, Cumming, J., stated in Sussex Group Limited v.
Fangeat, [2003] O.J. No. 3348,

It is integral to a free and democratic society like Canada that
citizens act pursuant to and under the rule of law. Court orders in
force must be respected and followed. The deliberate failure to obey
a court order strikes at the very heart of the administration of

And further,

If the remedies a court directs to be put in place through its orders
can be ignored with impunity, the road to civil anarchy is close at
hand. The thin veil of civilization that cloaks our community through
the rule of law is fragile and in need of constant protection.

Mr. Lovelace says that while he respects the rule of law, he cannot
comply because his Algonquin law is supreme. He says he finds himself
in a dilemma. Sadly, it is a dilemma of his own making.

His apparent frustration with the Ontario government is no excuse for
breaking the law. There can only be one law, and that is the law of
Canada, expressed through this court. One cannot be permitted as
Wood, J. stated in R. v. Bridges 61 D.L.R.(4th)154, at page four, "the
occasional anarchical holiday from the rule of law".

As he further stated,

…by seeking to change the law by deliberately disobeying it you
threaten the continued existence of the very instrument, indeed the
only instrument through which you may eventually achieve the end you
seek. Such conduct is not only illegal, it is completely

Recognizing that a sanction for contempt must be proportionate to the
nature of the contempt itself, as well as any mitigating or indeed
aggravating circumstances, and bearing in mind the sentencing
principles of punishment and deterrence, I sentence Robert Lovelace
and Paula Sherman to six months each in jail.

In addition to that, you will each be fined. Robert Lovelace, a
recognized leader and spokesman for his community, was on the site in
breach of the order on twenty-six occasions.

Although apparently only illegally present on two occasions, Paula
Sherman is the current chief of the A.A.F.N. Her illegal presence at
the site would only serve to send a signal and to encourage others.

I have carefully considered the evidence concerning ability to pay,
and reference has been made by me to the suggested factors set out in
my brother judge's reasons, Justice Stinson, in Oakley Manufacturing
Inc. v. Bowman, [2005] O.J. No. 1641, at paragraph 69, and by Ferrier,
J. in Boucher v. Kennedy, [1998] O.J. No. 1612, in my determination of
the fine to be imposed. I am satisfied that each along with A.A.F.N.
has the ability to pay.

Accordingly, as to Robert Lovelace, in addition to the period of
incarceration just pronounced, you shall be fined $25,000.00. Ms.
Sherman is fined $15,000.00, and A.A.F.N., $10,000.00.

Going forward, and in order that these respondents comply with the
order, which by the way is to continue, they shall each, along with
A.A.F.N., be subject to a fine of $2,000.00 per day for any failure to

As requested, the statement of defence on behalf of these
respondents, pursuant to Rule 60.12, is hereby struck, and no other
motions or applications to this court may be made by them until their
contempt has been purged.

This, in my view, is not only proportionate to the wrongdoing, but is
necessary in order to control the courts process.

However, should these respondents decide to purge their contempt by
undertaking on a permanent basis to comply with my order, then I may
be spoken to by way of a motion to vary or discharge this custodial

In the meantime, I intend to endorse the warrant of committal that
the sentences I have imposed are not subject to remission of any kind
unless ordered by this court.

The police, that is to say the O.P.P. or otherwise, are directed to
immediately enforce the warrant of committal.


THE COURT: As to the matter of costs?
MR. SMITHEMAN: Your Honour, we'd ask for costs on a substantial
indemnity basis. And there's one other matter, Your Honour.
MR. SMITHEMAN: If I might just address the warrants … the Jane and
John Doe warrants. There may have been some confusion yesterday. The
request is to have those issued by this Court to assist the police in
the event of a further obstruction.
THE COURT: They shall be issued.
MR. SMITHEMAN: Thank you.
THE COURT: Do you wish, counsel, a time to make written submissions
with respect to costs?
MR. SMITHEMAN: Yes, Your Honour. What I would suggest is to make
that returnable for March 18th as well.
THE COURT: Mr. Reid?
MR. REID: That's fine, Your Honour.
THE COURT: Written cost submissions will be exchanged, and delivered
to me, and brief written submissions no greater than three pages each,
by March 18th, 2008. Thank you.


MR. SMITHEMAN: Your Honour, we have reached some accommodation with
my friend, Mr. Reid, and I want to say that it's been motivated mainly
on compassionate grounds, and we are agreeing to an undertaking that
we've worked out with my friend, Mr. Reid, on behalf of his client,
Ms. Paula Sherman. And it relates only to the term of incarceration,
the terms of which will be read in by Ms. Pratt. Thank you.
THE COURT: Is that correct, Mr. Reid?
MR. REID: It is.
THE COURT: Thank you.
MR. REID: And I think I should say in open court what I said in
chambers, Your Honour, that what Mr. Smitheman was alluding to about
compassionate grounds, the simple fact is that Chief Sherman is the
sole supporter of three children, and she will lose them if she goes
to jail.

MS. PRATT: So, the terms of the undertaking are as follows: One,
that Dr. Sherman will comply with the letter and the spirit of the
September 27, 2007 order of Associate Chief Justice Cunningham. Ms.
Sherman will not attempt to re-secure or in any way occupy the
Clarendon mineral site and exploration property.

Next, she will not engage in any activity that directly or indirectly
blocks Frontenac Ventures Corporation's representatives from bringing
a drill on the Clarendon mineral site and exploration property.

She will use her best efforts to ensure that Ardoch Algonquin First
Nation community members will comply with the September 27, 2007 order
of Your Honour, including not coming within 200 metres of the gate of
the Clarendon mineral site or the exploration property, with the
exception of bona fide hunting, trapping, or fishing activites during
the applicable season, in groups of four people or less, and with the
exception of travel in the normal course on Highway 509.

She will use her best efforts to ensure Ardoch Algonquin First Nation
community members will comply with the September 27, 2007 order of
Your Honour, by not attempting to re-secure the property and not
blocking Frontenac Ventures Corporation from bringing a drill on the

She will not solicit or encourage third parties to engage in any
activity prevented by the September 27, 2007 order of Associate Chief
Justice Cunningham. And in this regard, third parties include members
of the Shabot Obaadjiwan First Nation, other First Nations, including
Six Nations and Mohawks, settlers, including members of C.C.A.M.U.,
and environmental groups.

And finally, she will post a transcript of the undertakings that she
has personally given to the Court in this matter in the Ardoch
Algonquin First Nation Band office or the equivalent, and on the
Ardoch Algonquin First Nation website.

THE COURT: Thank you. Ms. Sherman, are you prepared to abide by
that undertaking?
MS. SHERMAN: Yes, I am.
THE COURT: Thank you. Accordingly, I will discharge the custodial
portion of my order with respect to Paula Sherman. Anything further?
THE COURT: Thank you.




Evidence Act

I, Pamela Juneau certify that this document is a true and accurate
transcript of the recording of:

Frontenac Ventures Corp v. Ardoch Algonquin First Nation et al

In the Ontario Superior Court of Justice, held at 5 Court Street,
Kingston, Ontario, taken from Recording No. 911-A036/08, which has
been certified in Form 1.

Date: February 21, 2008