KJIPUKTUK (Halifax) – Some 800 students walked out of their universities and schools this afternoon in support of the We’tsuwet’en Nation’s struggle to defend its sovereignty.
The various groups marched down Spring Garden Road to meet up in front of the Central Library in downtown Halifax to listen to speeches.
“As an Indigenous student I can’t just sit in class while my brothers and sisters on the West Coast are being forcibly removed. I have talked to Indigenous classmates, and we find it hard to focus, because we are concerned about our future, and the future of all Indigenous peoples in this country,” said one of those students. “When you take away our land, you take away our future as well.”
“I come from a family of land defenders, and sitting in class pretending everything is normal is hard to do when all this is going on,” said another student. “Watching people being arrested was one of the most terrifying things I have ever seen in my life. It is really important that we make it known that we’re not okay with this.”
For Dalhousie students in particular the rally was also in protest of the university’s direct complicity in the violence brought down upon the Wet’suwet’en land defenders.
Last week the Dalhousie Gazette reported that Dalhousie University invested over $2.3 million into TC Energy — owner of the Coastal GasLink pipeline.
“As a Grandmother I would like to thank all you students for coming together here. This is what we need to do in order to be heard. It’s your future these RCMP Officers are stepping on,” said Alton Gas water protector Thunder Bird Swooping Down Woman to loud cheers from the crowd.
“We need to understand that these projects are going to poison our water, affect our ecosystems, and our treaty rights. We will not be able to feed ourselves, to access clean water. These people are entering our lands illegally,without proper consultation, They’re taking away our Creator-given rights, she said.
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