Over the past 20 years, the GNA has been successful in protecting our rivers and rural communities. But we can`t stop now. Not only do mines grow, but we can also give an example of what is possible when everyday people get together and get creative. The following neighbourhood citizen associations and commissions embody the Good Neighbor Agreement: A good neighbourhood contract is usually a non-binding agreement between a neighbourhood (community) and an area that works to address specific issues that raise concerns, collaboratively. It is a way for each group to understand the mission and point of view of others, and it leads to a kind of compromise that both groups can benefit from. This approach encourages voluntary action instead of longer legal challenges that might otherwise arise. It is often best to try an extension of the authorization or another change in the facility, where the company asks the Community for permission for its activities. A community must have an organized group of volunteers and/or staff who meet regularly to identify specific outcomes and problems related to the institution or institutions of interest; This group could be an environment committee or a neighbourhood body, as two examples. It is usually best to have at least one person to collect some preliminary information about the industry from public documents and data searches.

The more targeted the result, the more limited the search must be. A community will be in a better position to negotiate if it has a good understanding of what the company is doing, and its concerns will be taken more seriously when they have done research. The best source of information is the industry itself: maybe the band can arrange a tour or the company can send a representative to meet with the group. Direct contacts like this are desirable and can save the group many hours of search time, provided the company is willing to share information. We have had some success in getting information that way. Information on chemical releases and storage is available online (see Resources Box) and can be accessed relatively easily. It may also be worth checking all municipal, national and federal permits that the company has. Most of them require an appointment with the regulator, but some items can be sent directly to the applicant. Signed in July 2001, the Nationwide Children`s Hospital Good Neighbor Agreement is an innovative partnership between the hospital and local citizens` associations.

What began as a way to maintain open communication and trust between the pediatric hospital and its immediate neighbors has become a catalyst for strengthening the community. It can also vary from group to group; Some agreements can be concluded with minimal discussion and will take place in a few months, during which more years may be necessary to make progress, even gradually.