First Nations have their voices heard in a new Ring of Fire documentary

A new documentary on the Ring of Fire aims to open people's eyes to the First Nation perspective on the mining project.
Paul Rickard says he wanted to make a documentary about the Ring of Fire before the mining project started because he wanted to make sure the First Nation communities had their voices heard. (

A new documentary on the Ring of Fire aims to open people's eyes to the First Nation perspective on the mining project.

The film tells the stories of people who live in First Nation communities near the resource development site.

Director and producer Paul Rickard spent months living and interviewing people in the communities.

"After our first week I was in those communities, they would say, 'Are you still here?' I said, 'Yeah. What do you mean?' 'Well, when most people come in, they fly in the morning and leave on the afternoon flight'," he told CBC News.

"So, it's the first time they actually had anyone interested in media to actually spend time with them."

Rickard said he was inspired to take on the work after hearing how some people in Attawapiskat First Nation feel they aren't getting enough from the nearby DeBeers diamond mine.

Like most people affected by nearby mining operations, those in First Nations communities around the Ring of Fire have concerns about their land and local economy, he said.

Negotiations with First Nations on the mining project seem promising, he added.

Paul Rickard spent months interviewing people who live in First Nation communities affected by the resource development in northwestern Ontario. 

"They're in a good standing position, I think, in terms of being able to discuss, not only with the industry or the mining companies, but also trying to meet with the Ontario government," he said.

He said people have told him told him health care and education need to be improved before the mining starts.

All six episodes of this documentary watched at A podcast is also available.


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