Statement Regarding Wet’suwet’en

Statement Regarding Wet’suwet’en

The SSMU recognizes the RCMP invasion of unceded Wet’suwet’en territory, actions which violate ‘Anuch niwh’it’en (Wet’suwet’en law) and undermine both the Canadian and British Columbian governments’ stated commitments to Reconciliation and the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Both government and industry have failed in obtaining free, prior, and informed consent from the Wet’suwet’en nation before advancing with the pipeline proposed by TC Energy. As such, any movement or development of this project violates the rights of the Wet’suwet’en peoples, and presents a clear threat to Indigenous sovereignty.

Further, projects and actions advanced by TC Energy and raids by the RCMP present an epistemic threat to Indigenous systems of law and governance. This threat to Wet’suwet’en territory presents a threat to the very kinship networks, governance structures, and legal systems which are derived and taught through land-based learning practices. For those reasons, among others, Indigenous protests cannot be minimized as simple activism, but instead viewed as actions taken and informed by legal protocol as taught through land as pedagogy. Instead of being viewed as blockades, radical activism, or protests, these actions need to be understood as actions of Indigenous peoples standing up for and asserting Indigenous rights.

The SSMU unequivocally condemns the actions taken by the RCMP, and stands with Indigenous land protectors across the country. Further, we amplify calls to solidarity, and have clearly outlined ways to support Indigenous land protectors below.

Donate directly to the Unist’ot’en camp, with donations going towards the purchase of food and medical supplies.

Support the Unist’ot’en Legal Fund, with funds being spent in support of injunction hearings and overseeing a Judicial Review.

Support ongoing and upcoming demonstrations planned by Indigenous peoples, including:

  • Ongoing manifestation on the corner of Rue Saint-Georges and Avenues St. Charles, accessible via either the 2 or 54 bus routes from Longueuil metro
  • Upcoming demonstration planned by UQAM for this upcoming Friday
  • Like and follow groups such as the Indigenous Students Alliance for news regarding on-campus shows of solidarity

Or find other ways that you can support. The Wet’suwet’en have released a clear and easy-to-access toolkit which explains how you can be an ally.

Signed,

Tomas Jirousek / Indigenous Affairs Commissioner | iac@ssmu.ca
Bryan Buraga / President | president@ssmu.ca
Madeline Wilson / Vice-President (University Affairs) | ua@ssmu.ca
Adam Gwiazda-Amsel / Vice-President (External Affairs) | external@ssmu.ca
Sanchi Bhalla / Vice-President (Internal) | internal@ssmu.ca
Sam Haward / Vice-President (Finance) | finance@ssmu.ca
Billy Kawasaki / Vice-President (Student Life) | studentlife@ssmu.ca

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