MPR reports that the water protectors (pipeline protesters) are bracing for a confrontation with la enforcement. Those officers involved in confrontations and arrests could include sheriff’s deputies from Hennepin, Anoka, and Washington counties — inappropriately sent — in response to a request for assistance from the Morton County Sheriff’s Department in North Dakota.
We wrote on blog on this yesterday. Here are updates and resources.
First, it is important to know that there are multiple camps with different leaders. The Sacred Stones Camp is on the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation, just south of the Cannonball River. The Oceti Sakowin Camp (the main camp) and the Red Warrior Camp are just north of the Cannon Ball River, and have federal permits to be there. A northern camp is near the site of current pipeline digging, on land owned by the pipeline company. The confrontation will happen in and around the northern camp.
Petitions and Phone Calls: There a petitions and Action Alerts circulating, including this one from Honor the Earth. It includes a petition and a request for Hennepin County residents to call their county commissioners and demand that Sheriff Rick Stanek recall the deputies sent to North Dakota. Residents from Anoka and Washington counties could make similar calls to their county commissioners. Moveon.org also has a petition.
Rally: There will be another rally in Minneapolis tomorrow, Friday the 28th, at the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office against county deputies being sent to Standing Rock. It starts at 2:30 p.m. Here is the Facebook Page.
Briefings: In-person emergency response briefing and call to action at St. Joan of Arc Church, 4537 3rd Ave. S., Minneapolis, on Sunday, Oct. 30th from 12:30 – 2:30 p.m.
Carpools: A new Facebook group has been created to coordinate rides to Standing Rock. Here is the form to enter your carpooling needs. For those unfamiliar with the camps, here are suggested guidelines for visiting.
(Thank you to MN350 for providing much of this information.)
Response from the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office
Joe Hobot, President and CEO of American Indian OIC and chair of the Metropolitan Urban Indian Directors group, sent a letter to Stanek telling him to withdraw his deputies from North Dakota. Hobot just published the initial response he received, reprinted in full below. It gives no indication that Sheriff Stanek is rethinking his decision:
Thank you for your letter.
Your feedback is very important to us, and your letter will be passed on to the Sheriff.
At the request of the State of North Dakota, and as approved by the State of Minnesota, on Sunday, Minnesota Sheriff’s Deputies from the Hennepin, Anoka, and Washington Counties’ Sheriff’s Offices were deployed to assist in Morton County, North Dakota. These deputies are part of a larger contingent of hundreds of law enforcement officers from around the Country who have responded to the request made through the Emergency Management Assistance Compact, (“EMAC”), a nationally adopted system for sharing personnel and resources via state-to-state aid agreements.
These Minnesota peace officers will assist in maintaining the public’s safety, preserve the peace, and protect the constitutional rights of protesters. These Sheriff’s deputies train and prepare to respond to emergency calls throughout the region, state and nation following any declaration of a state of emergency.
Reimbursement for expenses related to providing this service will be made by the State of North Dakota. The EMAC system was ratified by Congress and has been adopted as law in all 50 states — to ensure no sheriff, no deputy, and no state stands alone in the state of an emergency.
For further information about the EMAC process contact the MN Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management, a division of the MN Department of Public Safety, at 651-201-7400<tel:651-201-7400>.
A copy of the North Dakota state of emergency declaration may be found here.
Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office
The statement that: “These Minnesota peace officers will assist in maintaining the public’s safety, preserve the peace, and protect the constitutional rights of protesters” seems dubious at best. The deputies will be there to side with the pipeline company, Energy Transfer Partners, which is ignoring the federal government’s request for a voluntary stop in construction.
Resistance in Iowa
The Water Protectors in North Dakota have received a fair amount of attention, but also know that people are organizing in Iowa to oppose the Dakota Access Pipeline. The group is called Mississippi Stand. Here is their Facebook group.