- We call on the Congress and the Government to open an in-depth discussion with ASM organizations that are already formalized or currently in process of formalization, as well as artisanal men and women’s mining associations.
- We express our readiness to cooperate with artisanal and small-scale miners (ASM), public institutions and other allies to examine the differential inclusion of ASM in public policy at all levels.
Envigado, Colombia. 19th May, 2021.
At the Alliance for Responsible Mining (ARM), we join our voice to those of so many others in Colombia calling for the rejection of violence and the promotion of dialogue and negotiation of decent conditions for the population, and we urge for the respect of human rights and the preservation of the rule of law.
Major challenges still persist in the country to ensure the development of the mining sector upon which millions of men and women miners depend in many territories of black, indigenous and rural communities.
Traditional and ancestral ASM has been stigmatized by the presence of criminal actors of illicit mineral extraction in some territories, of which ASM is a victim. ARM supports the need to control illicit mineral extraction related to criminal networks and calls on the Congress and the Government to review the Draft Law 059 of 2020 that provides for measures to eradicate illicit exploitation of minerals. The current draft law directly affects traditional, ancestral and artisanal miners of the country who work in informal conditions, stigmatizing their work and excluding them from legal markets.
We also call for the inclusion of ASM in the financial sector, making possible their formal operation and commercialization of minerals in legal supply chains. It is necessary to work on a draft law that ensures the legitimate right of ASM miners to have access to financial services, as these barriers to access violate the rights of men and women miners and hamper the development of the sector.
We invite a dialogue with the Government, the Congress and ASM mining organizations, articulated in diverse movements. We publicly express our readiness to cooperate with all interested parties to examine the differential inclusion of ASM in public policy at all levels.
As Mr. Harbi Guerrero, ARM Vice President and traditional ASM miner stated:
“Today, the miners raise our voice in protest, demanding a solution to our many problems such as mining legalization, inclusion in formalization processes, freedom of association and access to banking and financial services. We have waited so long for solutions that never came so it is time to resolve ASM today.”
Ms. Cristina Echavarría, ARM Board Member, also stated that:
“ASM represents the large-scale mining in social terms. It is crucial to examine the differential inclusion approach and prioritize formalization public policies, ensuring their access to mineral resources, knowledge and technical training, credit and financial inclusion, and legal markets, understanding the importance of women in this activity.”
At ARM, we advocate for legitimate, formal and responsible artisanal and small-scale mining; we support miners to formalize their work and make their organizational, environmental, social and trading practices better, and we coordinate with public entities and stakeholders involved in precious metal supply chains to facilitate ASM access.
For further information, please contact the Communications Department at gro.s1685145019enime1685145019lbisn1685145019opser1685145019@mra1685145019