Native Women Speak Up for Immigrants; ND Oil Production Down, So Why DAPL? and Native Nations Rise March on DC

News summary:

  • The group Indigenous Women Rise is making a strong statement in support of immigrants that the Trump administration is trying to keep out.
  • Once economically booming, the state of North Dakota is facing large revenue drops because of declining oil and agriculture revenue. It begs the question: If oil production is down, why build the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL)?
  • Today is the Native Nations Rise March in Washington D.C. What you can do.
  • U.N. Official: Trump administration retreating on Indian Rights

Keep reading for the details on these stories. Continue reading

Army Corps Abruptly Ends DAPL Environmental Review; More Pressure Brought Against Pipeline’s Financial Backers

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has prematurely scuttled the environmental review of the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL), a move both expected and discouraging. Meanwhile, the Sierra Club and thousands of Japanese protestors have joined the push to divest from the banks backing the pipeline, the Standing Rock Nation is struggling from declining casino revenues, and the FBI investigates DAPL protestors as potential terrorists.

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DAPL Updates: Seattle Cuts Ties With Wells Fargo Over Pipeline; ND Legislature Eyes Tougher Penalties for Protestors

Repercussions for both supporters and opponents of the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) are piling up.

The City of Seattle is pulling its business from Wells Fargo, some $3 billion in accounts, due to both the bank’s support for DAPL and its bogus account scandal, news reports say. Meanwhile, the state of North Dakota is considering bills to toughen punishments for the kinds of protests taking place against DAPL, a legislative trend that is sweeping the country.

One bill in the North Dakota legislative hopper would remove liability for drivers who run over protesters standing in a roadway, as long as it is “unintentional.”

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Sisters of St. Joseph of Corondelet Stand with Standing Rock; #DivestFromDAPL Targets City of Minneapolis; and More

carondelet-logoThe Sisters of St. Joseph of Corondelet have issued a powerful Statement of Solidarity with the Native Peoples of Standing Rock.

The Order includes 1,102 vowed sisters worldwide. The statement expresses their commitment “to stand in solidarity with our Native American sisters and brothers, especially of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe.” Issued Nov. 30, it continues: “We stand with the community of Standing Rock … in their opposition to the Dakota Access Pipeline and their peaceful efforts to protect their water and sovereignty.”

A number of Protestant denominations have issued such statements. (They are archived on our page on the Dakota Access Pipeline.) This is the first statement we have seen from a Catholic order.

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Non-Violent Protest Success: Wells Fargo Agrees to Meet with Standing Rock Elders About DAPL

From Unicorn Riot site
From Unicorn Riot site

Wells Fargo has agreed today to meet with Standing Rock elders about the bank’s funding of the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL). It was a victory for non-violent protesting. The decision followed a four-hour “lock-down” at Wells Fargo’s downtown Minneapolis headquarters, sparked non-Native allies opposed to DAPL.

Thanks to Unicorn Riot for providing a live feed of the event. (It is still on line and available for viewing.) It was not clear from what I saw what group (if any) was leading the protest. Six people had locked themselves together in two groups of three. Tubes connected their arm to form a chain to keep people from accessing elevators. A number of other people were in the building’s  lobby providing moral support and communications.

The action succeeded in getting a meeting with Jon R. Campbell, Head of Government and Community Relations for Wells Fargo & Company. The group hoped for a press release and a public announcement. They settled for a letter. Continue reading

Local Actions Planned Thursday Against Banks Backing DAPL; Veterans Stand For Standing Rock, and More

From the National Day of Action at Army Corps of Engineers headquarters in St. Paul.
From the National Day of Action at the Army Corps of Engineers headquarters in St. Paul.

The Camp of the Sacred Stones and Red Warrior Camp are calling on allies to put pressure on the financial institutions backing the Dakota Access pipeline to divest, according to a Facebook post from the two groups, and reprinted below.

“It is time banks stop using our money to finance crude oil pipelines that violate indigenous treaty rights and put our drinking water and climate at risk,” it said. “It is time to end the escalating police violence at Standing Rock.”

“Until US Bank and Wells Fargo withdraw their money from the Dakota Access pipeline, we will withdraw our money from these banks.”

Sacred Stones Camp and Red Warrior Camp make the following requests: Continue reading

Vigil for Injured Water Protector; Where to Call; and Critiquing Media Coverage

Vigil outside of HCMC Tuesday night for Sophia Wilansky, a 21-year-old water protector injured by a concussion grenade.

More than 100 people braved a cold evening to hold a vigil Tuesday night for a young water protector who sustained a serious arm injury, the result of ongoing excessive force used against those opposing the Dakota Access Pipeline. Sophia Wilansky, 21 of New York, was carrying water to unarmed people on the front lines when she was struck by a concussion grenade, according to a report in Indian Country Today. She had to be airlifted to Hennepin County Medical Center where she underwent a lengthy operation to save her badly damaged arm.

The Indian Country Today story included a statement by Wilansky’s father:

Both her radial and ulnar artery were completely destroyed. Her radius was shattered and a large piece of it is missing. Her medial nerve is missing a large section as well. All of the muscle and soft tissue between her elbow and wrist were blown away. The police did not do this by accident—it was an intentional act of throwing it directly at her.  …

I died a thousand deaths today and will continue to do so for quite some time. I am left without the right words to describe the anguish of watching her look at her now alien arm and hand.”

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