New film on Mayas, Mining and Justice to premier at UBC October 29
Tuesday, October 29, 3pm
Norm Movie Theatre in the SUB Building
Defensora documents the courageous journey of Qeq’chi Mayan women, who suffer tremendous violence a the hands of a Canadian Mining Company, and their precedent-setting battle to try the company in Canadian courts.
This showing of the film is organized by UBCs “Not from My Campus,” and co-sponsored by the UBC Latin American Studies Program.
With director Rachel Schmidt, and Graham Russell of Rights Action, who will attend the showing and answer questions following the film.
The film has a strong connection to BC. Director Rachel Schmidt first studied film at Langara College and the trial documented in the film (in which for the first time, a judge rules that a Canadian transnational can be tried in Canadian courts for crimes committed abroad) would probably not have happened without the assistance of BC university students. A few years back, students from the University of Northern BC field school to Guatemala were moved by the Qeq’chi women’s testimony of how their village was burned, several were raped, and a community leader murdered, allegedly by security guards that HudBay Minerals had hired to drive them off the land. Returning to BC, the students decided that for their class project they would prepare a legal case against HudBay, and find a law firm willing to take it before a Canadian court.
Watch the film to find out what happens next!