Compensate mercury contamination victims, NDP – Kenora Online

The NDP is calling for action from the Liberal government, when it comes to cleaning up the English River and Wabigoon River systems.

NDP Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation critic Michael Mantha says that the Wynne Liberals are continuing to fail the people of Grassy Narrows and Wabaseemoong First Nations, who are now fighting to get access to their own hair and blood samples to demonstrate the extent of mercury contamination.

“Four years ago, the former chief of Grassy Narrows First Nation, Elder Steve Fobister, took the extreme and desperate step of going on a hunger strike to draw attention to the historic and ongoing poisoning from mercury of his community in nearby Wabaseemoong First Nation,” said Mantha, the MPP for Algoma-Manitoulin.

“At that time the Minister of Indigenous Relations committed to former Chief Fobister that action to change the badly broken system of compensation for the victims of mercury would follow. The federal government took thousands of samples of hair and blood from hundreds of members of these communities between 1970 and 2000, and only now, after a fight, are these community members gaining access to their own samples,” Mantha added.

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