Wanda Nanibush - March for Climate, Justice & Jobs Launch
I want to first acknowledge that we are on the territory that is governed by the one dish with one spoon treaty, which is a treaty that defines this land as a space that we need to share and take care of for all. This is also the territory of the Mississaugas and the Haudenosaunee, previously there’s also the Ouendat and the Seneca, so I want to acknowledge all those people. I also want to acknowledge the 90,000 Indigenous Peoples that currently call Toronto their home. Lastly, I want to acknowledge all of the land in Canada as Indigenous land, and I want to acknowledge it as shared territory with all of the nations who’ve come here.
Today, I want to talk about Indigenous people’s role in this struggle. We are at the forefront of this struggle, because we’re the first ones who experience all the detrimental effects of climate change. We are also a source of strategy for thinking about climate action because we know the land intimately, and we’ve been at the forefront of thinking about climate change since well before scientists even became involved. So I think we need to put Indigenous rights at the centre of this movement.
As Indigenous people are putting their bodies on the line across this country trying to stop things like the oil sands, trying to bring attention to the flooding of their lands when you do hydroelectric dams, trying to bring attention to the fact that 70% of all uranium is on Indigenous territory globally, so when we look at nuclear as an option, it’s not a great option for us––so there’s all this knowledge that Indigenous people have that can really benefit our strategies going forward.
We as Idle No More have put forward the voices of women, the voices of two-spirited people, and the voices of youth. This has really galvanized voices that haven’t been part of this thinking or a part of democracy in Canada. Idle No More has been really amazing at raising the question of democracy and how we’re going to run this country, and whose voices are really going to be at the table, to the forefront of all of our struggles. I think all the struggles do come together under Indigenous rights.
We are here for you, in defense of the land, will you stand with us, in defense of our rights? Thank you. Miigwech. Wanda Nanibush - Beausoleil First Nation, Idle No More Organizer
What Can You Do? How Can You Help? Where Can You Join?
Canada's ready for a new kind of climate movement. On July 5th, we're marching for climate and economic justice in Toronto, Canada. RSVP for the March for Jobs, Justice and the Climate at jobsjusticeclimate.ca.
The march on July 5th will call for a justice-based transition to a clean-energy economy in Canada, and is expected to attract thousands of people in Toronto on the eve of the Climate Summit of the Americas and Pan American Economic Summit. A justice-based transition ensures that those most impacted by the climate crisis – Indigenous, racialized, poor and working people – are the first to benefit from this new economy.
“Our communities deserve justice and cannot continue to be sacrifice zones. Even in the heart of the tar sands, communities are organizing to be part of the new renewable energy economy. Everyone and every roof can be a part of the solar solution. Panel by panel we will show politicians what true leadership is,” said Melina Laboucan-Massimo, Lubicon Cree member and a Greenpeace climate campaigner.
The mobilization will demonstrate massive growing public support for a new economy that honours Indigenous rights, creates thousands of climate-friendly jobs, tackles inequality and stops runaway climate change.
“It is morally indefensible for us to continue to pursue an economic growth strategy that brings our climate closer to an irreversible tipping point. Canada needs an energy economy that respects Free Prior and Informed consent of Indigenous frontline communities and creates good, clean jobs for workers, and on July 5th we’re going to hit the streets of Toronto to demand it,” said Clayton Thomas Muller, a campaigner with 350.org.
(Photo Credit for Tar Sands image above, Kris Krug)