Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, University of Toronto
252 Bloor Street West, Toronto, Floor 2, Rm. 212
Come listen to some of the front-line people in this historic environmental justice case. Indigenous plaintiffs in Ecuador have been battling the international giant corporation Chevron for some of the largest damages and human rights violations in recorded history.
Chevron has refused to pay the $9.5 billion US fine issued by the Ecuadorian Supreme Court in 2013 for damages to the Ecuadorian Amazon and its peoples since 1964. They have sold off all assets in Ecuador forcing the Indigenous peoples to seek remediation in other countries. In 2015, the Canadian Supreme Court ruled that “an Ontario court has jurisdiction to determine whether the foreign judgment should be recognized and enforced in Ontario against Chevron Corp”.
Read more about the case here: http://texacotoxico.net/en/history-of-the-case/
Guillermo Grefa – Leader of the Kichwa nation and member of UDAPT, he is the delegate of the 30 000 UDAPT members affected by Chevron. He is a bilingual cultural education professor in Ecuador, but he is also the son-in-law of Maria Aguinda (the first signatory of the lawsuit against the oil company). For 24 years, he has fought with members of UDAPT and other Indigenous nationalities with thousands of affected people. His testimony is substantial for the townships of Ecuador to have access to Justice.
Julio Prieto is an Ecuadorian lawyer who was defended the Indigenous townships of the Ecuadorian Amazon for more than 12 years. He is a specialist in Environmental Rights and has written a book on this in Ecuador.
Jaime Vargas is the President of the Confederation of Indigenous Nationalities in Ecuador (CONAIE) and has worked and defended Indigenous townships in the Ecuadorian Amazon for more than a decade against the voracity on transnational corporations.
Darlene Kaboni is from the Wikwemikong Unceded Indian Reserve and is fluent in the Ojibway language and culture. She is a member of the Ontario Public Services Employees Union (OPSEU) and has numerous ties with other Unions, including NUPGE, CUPW, PSAC, CUPE, CLC and is a strong Indigenous activist who has travelled to various countries in Central and South America, and Africa representing First Nations to educate and bring awareness to common issues and struggles to other Indigenous peoples.
This panel will be moderated by Andrea Vaásquez Jiménez, Co-Director of the Latinx, Afro-Latin-America, Abya Yala Education Network (LAEN)