Their Mines, Our Stories, is a multi-media project started by two professors from the Evergreen State College. Anne Fischel (Media and Community Studies) and Lin Nelson (Environmental Health and Community Studies) began this project by documenting the experiences of individuals in communities who worked at, and/or lived close to, one of the ASARCO smelters. ASARCO is the largest polluter in the United States and is responsible for 20 Superfund sites.
Their project grew to involve research, film, photography, oral history, analytical writing, a website and a documentary sharing the experiences and struggles of people in Ruston/Tacoma, WA; Hayden, AZ, and El Paso, TX. The project focuses on the complexity of the relationship between communities who relied on ASARCO for employment, while later discovering the smelter was poisoning them at work with unsafe working conditions, and impacting their families health and safety from their massive, unregulated pollution. All this and then fighting with the EPA and other government agencies to help protect them.
Anne and Lin, as well as Carlos Martinez, a representative of the Smeltertown community in El Paso, will be visiting Northport Saturday, May 28th. There will be an informal meeting with the group at Northport High School, Saturday, May 28th at 2:00 p.m.. We will discuss our similar experiences, share ideas and strategies on how small communities impacted by big polluters can come together and create a larger information network and make positive changes, as well as “impact and strengthen the policy frameworks that shape environmental…health.”
We will also be screening their documentary; “Under the Smoke Stack.”
Anne would also like to film interviews with any Northport residents interested in sharing their stories. She will provide me with the edited filming she completes to share on our website and attract the attention of documentary makers. If you would like to share your story on video we will be filming those Sunday, May 29th.
If you are interested in attending the meeting and/or being interviewed on film please e-mail me a short note letting me know so I can have an accurate head count.
“Their Mines, Our Stories” – Northport Meeting
Date: Saturday, May 28th
Time: 2:00 p.m.
Location: Northport High School
Filming interviews with residents
Date: Sunday, May 29th
Location: Paparich Farm (4598 Mitchell Road)