Prime Minister Stephen Harper's government hasn't been good to Canada's First Nations' people. Now activists are fighting back against policies that have hurt communities already lacking enough funding for basic services like heated housing, water, food and education. They're demanding that First Nations get sovereign rights to determine the futures of their communities.
On Dec. 11, Chief Theresa Spence of the Attawapiskat First Nation started a hunger strike. She wants a meeting with the Prime Minister and First Nations leaders to talk about how they can work together to improve their communities.
Published on Jan 19, 2013
Many powerful speakers shared their heritage, wisdom and culture at an Idle No More gathering outside and through the Willowbrook mall in Langley, on Kwantlen, Katzie, Matsqui & Semiahmoo land.
All spoke of the most important need for unity, to release all anger but that which is harnessed to motivate so we can fight corporatism collectively, the true colonialism of the 21st century which by no means only threatens the indigenous populations.
Great little segment on Democracy Now's December 26, 2012 broadcast:
From Toronto DN! speaks with Pamela Palmater, Chair in Indigenous Governance at Ryerson University and spokeswoman for the "Idle No More" movement. "We, First Nations people, have been subsidizing the wealth and prosperity and programs and services of Canadians from our land and resources," Palmater says. "And that's the reality here that most people don't understand."
To watch the entire weekday independent news hour, read the transcript, or download the podcast, visit http://www.democracynow.org.
Stand United with Indigenous Peoples Everywhere!
IdleNoMore is standing up for international indigenous rights. Worldwide rallies are being organized uniting all of our peoples to protect Mother Earth. What started as a quiet murmur is building to a roar! Friends of Indigenous peoples and Indigenous people everywhere are being called to stand up and do what they can starting December 21. Use rallies, twitter, Facebook, blog, phone people, whatever works! It is time to be idle no more... Now is the time to unite and protect our lands, our waters, our air, and our rights. Join the conversation at IdleNoMore.
Declare your solidarity with indigenous people and Mother Earth - Sign the Petition, take action, and pass it on!
The four founders of Idle No More didn’t start out famous. Until flash-mob round dances, prayer circles, and blockades spread across Canada, few people knew Jessica Gordon, Sylvia McAdam, Sheelah McLean, and Nina Wilson.
But today, Idle No More is emerging as a powerful movement for the rights of native peoples to protect the lands and waters.
The stakes extend far beyond First Nations’ land. Bill C-45, which sparked the movement, paves the way for expansion of tar sands mining and for building a pipeline to carry some of the Earth’s most polluting, carbon-intensive oil from Alberta to the Pacific coast for shipment to overseas markets. NASA climate scientist James Hansen says burning large quantities of tar sands oil would mean “game over for the planet.”
Read the interview here:
On March 1, the US State Department issued its Supplementary Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS) on the proposed Keystone XL (KXL) pipeline, claiming that KXL will not “likely result in significant adverse environmental effects.”
Alas, the erroneous State Department claim arises largely from the report’s blanket assumption that tar sands will be extracted and burned anyway – by somebody – regardless of US action.
Such fatalistic reasoning minimizes the terrible climate-change consequences of processing tar sands, which even the SEIS report admits will generate far more greenhouse emissions than conventional petroleum.
Tell the Obama Administration you oppose KXL »
This post was modified from its original form on 16 Mar, 5:51
Last year marked the 50th anniversary of when Grassy Narrows First Nations people began being poisoned by mercury from a paper mill that contaminated their river upstream.
Instead of helping, Ontario is planning for another decade of clearcut logging in Grassy Narrows' watershed – a practice that further increases mercury levels in the local food chain.
Tell premiere Kathleen Wynne that you support justice for Grassy Narrows, an end to clearcutting in Grassy Narrows, and protection for water everywhere.