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Organizing a Peruvian Village Against the Mining Industry:
A Discussion with Daniel Moss about activism in the high Andes


In June, 2000, a toxic spill traced to a US-owned mine in Peru ignited a battle between the villagers of Choropampa and the multi-national mining industry. More than a thousand people suffered mercury poisoning. Organizing themselves, the villagers confronted and negotiated with the mine owners and the Peruvian government; an agreement was reached to clean up the spill and to compensate those who were injured. What lessons can we draw from this experience?

DANIEL MOSS is Development Director at Grassroots International. He has worked for over twenty years in community organizing and community development, both in the US and in Latin America -- from public-housing issues to the rights and welfare of refugees after a civil war. He received a Master's degree in International Development and Regional Planning from MIT in 2000. Most recently Daniel served as South America Program Officer for Oxfam America, where he campaigned with indigenous organizations to increase the accountability of Andean governments and the global mining industry. Not only will he tell us what he learned about organizing in Latin America, he will also reflect on what it's like being an activist.

Friday, April 19, noon
Stella Room, MIT 7-338