LOS ANGELES – More than 100 children, parents and community organizers in fluorescent yellowish-green shirts and orange shoe covers marched through a South Los Angeles neighborhood earlier this week chanting, “Hey, hey, ho, ho, this drilling site has got to go!”
The canaries-in-a-coal-mine color-scheme of the protesters was intentional. There was even a giant cage in front of an oil drilling site on West Jefferson Boulevard that neighborhood children, most of them African American or Latino, crammed into, holding up signs asking to “Set these canaries free.”
In Peru, Miners are joining with indigenous, environmentalists and community activists for a national strike on July 9th against Southern Copper Corporation’s plans to develop the Tia Maria copper mine, a mega-project pit mine planned for the Arequipa region of Southern Peru. Attacks by Peruvian armed forces, in league with Southern, have already resulted in the deaths of 3 protesters, with hundreds wounded and detained.
In the state of Sonora, Mexico, Southern Copper is using scab labor to bust a labor strike at the Cananea copper mine. Meanwhile, ignoring warnings by the workers that the seals on company wells were defective, Southern allowed the bad seals to leak 10.5 million gallons of sulfuric acid into the headwaters of the Rio Sonora—the worst environmental disaster in Mexico’s history.
If you are a friends of the Earth and working families, please call Southern’s US office in Phoenix with phone calls in support of the popular movement demands in Peru and Mexico. We hope to flood the office with calls!
Southern Copper Corporation: (602) 264-1375 ext. 2 (commercial interests division)
The Australian understands the pair’s Longford crude oil plant, closed for 45 days in the March quarter, was unable to open until April 29, indicating BHP will take another hit to quarterly production when it releases its next production report in July.
The strikes, which prevented the crude plant and a gas plant reopening last quarter after planned maintenance shutdowns, concern enterprise agreements for onshore and offshore workers.
The Bass Strait fields have been the nation’s biggest oil-producing fields over the past 40 years, hitting their heyday in the 1980s. While crude production has fallen substantially since then, the fields are still producing and are set to expand gas production.
STUDENTS AND workers at the University of Washington (UW) are on a roll, fighting for and winning some impressive gains in the face of an administration that continues to push for budget cuts and privatization.
Recent steps forward for UW activists include an increase in the student minimum wage to $11 per hour, in line with Seattle law; a new contract for research assistants (RAs), teaching assistants (TAs), graders and tutors, which includes a pay increase in base rate departments of 24 percent over the life of a three-year contract and $200 extra per quarter for child care; a resolution passed by the Board of Regents to divest UW from coal stocks; and an ongoing discussion with the administration about the reality of institutional racism at the UW.
All of these gains have come from organizing and mass action on campus.