The Canadian Federation of Students-Nova Scotia, which represents post-secondary students from across Nova Scotia, stands in solidarity with members of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and their allies as they protect sacred land and water from the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline. The Federation condemns colonial violence against Indigenous territory and people, and the violation of treaty rights.
The Dakota Access Pipeline project has devastating consequences for Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and Reservation. The Pipeline has already destroyed many Indigenous ancestral burial sites and sacred places of prayer. If continued as planned, the Pipeline will cross Lakota Treaty Territory at the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation, destroying more sacred land and contaminating the Missouri River – the Standing Rock Sioux’s drinking water source. The Federation protests such desecrations of sacred land and the contamination of natural resources.
The Federation protests the physical violence perpetrated against peaceful Indigenous water protectors at Standing Rock by both the National Guard and private security company G4S. Violent interventions have included the use of physical force, attack dogs, pepper spray, tear gas and water cannons in below-freezing temperatures. Such extreme use of force is grossly uncalled for in response to non-violent direct action.
The Canadian Federation of Students opposes any development or resource extraction on Indigenous lands without the explicit consent of local Indigenous communities. The Federation recognizes and fully supports the inherent rights of Indigenous people, such as the right to self-determination, self-government, and the right to clean water.