Ten days ago, the Ontario Court ruled that our boycott of Daishowa products was not only legal, but "a model of how such activities should be conducted in a democratic society."
When Justice MacPherson released his judgement, we decided to wait ten days before re-starting the boycott of Daishowa in order to give Daishowa some time to put together a clear, public and unequivocal commitment not to cut or buy wood cut on Lubicon territory until there is a land rights settlement negotiated with both levels of government and a harvesting agreement negotiated with the Lubicon which respects their environmental and wildlife concerns.
That ten days is up.
Last Monday, Daishowa's Tom Cochran asked to meet with us in order to discuss the matter. On Tuesday, April 21, we met with Daishowa and they asked us to extend that ten day period to thirty days. However their only justification for this extension was the vague assurance that they were "hopeful that there may be a possibility of something happening."
It has been ten years now since the Lubicon people first made it clear that they would not allow logging on their unceded traditional territories without a land rights settlement in place. It has been six-and-a-half years now since the Friends of the Lubicon first expressed to Daishowa that same request as the raison-d'être of the Daishowa boycott, and that same request has been repeated ad nauseum by countless letters from Lubicon supporters.
Daishowa knows exactly how to end the boycott.
If their hopes that Daishowa might finally make that commitment are well founded, then we'll look forward to that announcement. Should the Lubicon Nation receive such a commitment from Daishowa, the boycott will end immediately.
But in the absence of any evidence that Daishowa is planning to do anything other than stall or seek further legal remedies, we will not grant Daishowa any more than the ten years and ten days they've already had to make the simple commitment being asked of them. As of today, the boycott is back on.
Last week I also promised that this boycott would be bigger than any boycott they've faced before. We've come through on that promise. Today, a well-organized boycott campaign is beginning not just in Ontario, but in Quebec, Manitoba, the United States, and Europe. And we are especially pleased to announce that a Lubicon support group is now forming in Japan. They were scheduled to meet with the company today, in preparation to take on Daishowa on their home ground.
It's our hope, however, that our boycott will end just as quickly as it's beginning. Because we hope that Daishowa will finally do the right thing and make the simple commitment being asked of them. There's no need for any of this.
Daishowa told us earlier this week they need more time to make that commitment. Daishowa doesn't need more time. They need more honour, they need more integrity, and they need more compassion, but they don't need more time.
The boycott is on.
for Friends of the Lubicon
(TORONTO) Friends of the Lubicon, Amitie Lubicons-Quebec, Manitoba Future Forest Alliance, Lubicon Defense Project, The Stop Daishowa Campaign Europe and a new group in Japan are backing the Lubicon Lake Indian Nation demand that the giant forestry multinational commit to stay off unceded Lubicon land until the land rights are settled and a harvesting agreement is negotiated respecting Lubicon wildlife and environmental concerns.
The resurgence of the Daishowa Boycott in Canada comes 10 days after Ontario Court Judge Justice James MacPherson ruled the Friends' consumer boycott legal, calling it "a model of how such activities should be conducted in a democratic society."
Daishowa plans to appeal that ruling. Prior to the latest ruling by Justice MacPherson, Daishowa had convinced the courts to shut down the consumer boycott for the last 3 years.
The Friends say they met with Daishowa executives earlier in the week and Daishowa told them they were "hopeful that there may be a possibility of something happening," but that they needed more time to come up with a commitment not to log Lubicon territories. Kevin Thomas, a spokesperson for the Friends, replied that "Daishowa doesn't need more time. They need more honour, they need more integrity, and they need more compassion, but they don't need more time. The boycott is on." Thomas added "we will not grant Daishowa any more than the ten years and ten days they've already had to make the simple commitment being asked of them."
Thomas says the expansion of the boycott across international lines means the boycott will "be bigger than any boycott they've faced before."
Daishowa makes paper bags, telephone directory paper, newsprint and other paper products.
For more information, please contact:
Friends of the Lubicon
Chief Bernard Ominayak, Lubicon Lake Indian Nation
Don Sullivan, Spokesperson, Manitoba Future Forest Alliance
Marc Drouin, Spokesperson, Amitie Lubicons-Quebec
Dan Clarke, Lubicon Defense Project (Seattle)
Masano Shimaguchi (Japan)
Dionys Zink, Stop Daishowa Campaign Europe
Friends of the Lubicon
485 Ridelle Ave.
Toronto, ON M6B 1K6
Tel: (416) 763-7500
Fax: (416) 603-2715
Announcer: Friends of the Lubicon is restarting its boycott against the pulp and paper giant Daishowa. Ten days ago an Ontario court refused to make permanent a three-year-old injunction stopping the boycott. At that time, the lobby group gave Daishowa a deadline to make a public promise not to log on land in Alberta claimed by the Lubicon Nation. As Sandra Bartlett reports, Friends of the Lubicon says the deadline is up...and the boycott is on again.
Kevin Thomas, Friends of the Lubicon: ...in Quebec, Manitoba, the United States, Europe and in Japan...
Sandra Bartlett: Kevin Thomas of Friends of the Lubicon says the group is keeping its promise to be back bigger and better than ever. That news disappoints Daishowa's Tom Cochran. He says they asked the group for the boycott to be delayed until May 15th.
Tom Cochran, Daishowa: We told them that we were putting a lot of pressure, all the pressure that we could bear on to the Alberta government. We were trying our best and we told them it would take quite a while to solve these things.
Sandra Bartlett: The company has begun talks with the Alberta government over its logging rights on the disputed land. Those talks could see an exchange: Daishowa would give up the rights on the land claimed by the Lubicon and get the right to log elsewhere. But Thomas says Friends of the Lubicon thought the negotiations sounded too vague. However, Thomas says if Daishowa strikes a deal with the Alberta government, the boycott will be stopped immediately. In the meantime, friends of the Lubicon on three continents will be contacting Daishowa customers and asking them to find another paper supplier. Sandra Bartlett, CBC News, Toronto.