MPP Campbell calls on Wynne to commit to cleaning up the Wabigoon River in Grassy Narrows
QUEEN'S PARK – Today during Question Period, NDP MPP for Kenora-Rainy River, Sarah Campbell, said the Premier should listen to Grassy Narrows leaders, scientists, and community members, and clean up the mercury contaminated Wabigoon River.
“When will this government do what everyone knows needs to be done and clean up the Wabigoon River, so the people in Grassy Narrows may fish and live off their land without becoming sick? Campbell said.
Campbell said that while the NDP repeatedly raised the issue of the legacy of the mercury contamination of the Grassy Narrows First Nation territory with the Liberal government, the Premier should listen to the growing number of voices calling for a cleanup.
Regional Chief Isadore Day said: “In the spirit of reconciliation, the Ontario government should do the right thing," and clean up the Wabigoon River system and Clay Lake.”
Dr David Suzuki said: “No single act would go further to illustrate that a new era has dawned in our relationship with indigenous peoples and our shared environment.”
The Liberal MP for Kenora, and former Indian Affairs Minister Bob Nault said: "Efforts to remediate the mercury have been postponed long enough."
“Yesterday, the Premier had read the report but claimed the solutions it proposed weren’t very clear. So let me clear, because the report is very clear: Determine whether there is an ongoing mercury leak; find out if there are hotspots that carry contaminated mercury down river; inject clay into the river to enhance the natural remediation going on,” Campbell said.
“It has been done effectively in other parts of the province. We know that it can be done. Why won’t this Premier commit to clean up the Wabigoon River of its mercury contamination that’s making people in Grassy Narrows sick?”
Grassy Narrows youth, traditional drummers, mercury survivors, and supporters from social justice, environmental, faith, and labour movements, will hold a River Run rally at Queen’s Park tomorrow, June 2.