CUPE stands in solidarity with the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and all indigenous activists and allies who are courageously fighting to stop the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL). The proposed pipeline would carry nearly half a million barrels of fracked crude oil across four states every day, from the Bakken fields of North Dakota to Illinois, threatening the water resources as well as the tribe’s land and ancestral burial sites.
The pipeline, as planned, will cross the Lakota Treaty Territory at the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation, showing a blatant disregard for the rights of indigenous people to protect the land and its resources. The level of violence and intimidation endured by indigenous activists at the hands of private security and state forces on behalf of a private corporation, reminiscent of centuries of racism and colonial plunder, is shocking.
The DAPL deepens our reliance on fossil fuels and will worsen climate change at a time when we need to be building a future that relies on renewable energy. We need to realize our ambition to create renewable public energy systems that are fully unionized and to create environmentally sustainable jobs that respect the integrity of the planet and its people.
We support and echo the calls on the US government to respect the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People, and to consult with the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe immediately to find a solution that will not pose a risk to the Tribe, their water sources or their sacred grounds.