Press Statement: For Immediate Release September 30, 2015
Contact: Sweetwater Nannauck
SEATTLE, WA – We celebrate the victory of Royal Dutch Shell pulling out of the Arctic! Not only has it been a bad business decision for Shell from the very beginning but the cost of drilling impact on the environment, the traditional way of life of the indigenous people in the Arctic, the irreparable contribution to climate change and rising sea levels cannot be quantified nor justified by profit margins.
In May and June 2015 Natives and non-natives in Seattle stood in unprecedented unified action honoring the indigenous stewards of the Arctic and Salish Sea. We sought spiritual guidance to bring a peaceful resolution to protect the Arctic. Thousands of people joined the ‘Save the Arctic’ movement together we can proudly tell our grandchildren we did our part, we helped make a difference for them and future generations!
The Arctic has sustained sacred life for millennia. Idle No More Washington was honored to stand with front-line Alaska Native environmental ‘Protectors’ such as Faith Gemmill-Fredson (Neets’aii Gwich’in, Pit River and Wintu) of Arctic Village, Alaska who is the founder and current Executive Director of REDOIL (Resisting Environmental Destruction On Indigenous Lands), Mae R. Hank (Inupiat) from Point Hope (AKA – Tikigaq), Alaska, and elder George Edwardson (Inupiat) from Barrow, Alaska.
Idle No More Washington is in the forefront of leading a new movement of decolonizing activism that led up to the huge difference of organizing in Washington State. By giving workshops to non-Natives about the history of colonization, healing from historical trauma, spiritual activism gave them the understanding that allowed them to take the lead from Native organizers. They learned that Natives practicing our traditional ceremony, offering prayers, singing ancient songs included in our activism the work comes from the heart and Spirit, as can be seen in all of our efforts so far, the Creator never fails!
This is much bigger than Royal Dutch Shell drilling in the Arctic. What are the next steps? Idle No More Washington is already partnering with inspiring young leaders such as Che Sehyun of the Coalition of Immigrants, Refugees, and Communities of Color; Edgar Franx of Community to Community Development; Nataanii Means (Oglala Lakota, Omaha, and Diné) from Chinle, AZ on the Navajo Nation is the son of Russell Means; Mc Rhetorik (Kewa) from Santo Domingo Pueblo, NM and Yaz like Jaws (Blackfeet/Navajo) from Browning, Montana. Together we will work with Native youth and the communities most impacted by climate change.
The good news is that Shell united people in a way that cannot be ignored, for this we are grateful! We continue the work, offer prayers of thanksgiving, we know it was not us, but the Creator that we owe this victory to! We are one, we all are #IdleNoMore! #ShellNo #NativeWomenRising
Idle No More ~ #ShellNotDrill Celebration!
Sunday October 4, 2015
12:00 noon – 4:00 pm
Don Armeni Boat Ramp
1222 Harbor Ave SW, Seattle, WA 98116
ALL ARE INVITED to join us in celebrating the victory of Royal Dutch Shell pulling out of the Arctic! Not only has it been a bad business decision for Shell from the very beginning but the cost of drilling impact on the environment, the traditional way of life of the indigenous people in the Arctic, the irreparable contribution to climate change and rising sea levels cannot be quantified nor justified by profit margins.
This has been a collaborative effort that unified people cross-culturally and intergenerationally! We stood together in opposition and now together in celebration! There will be special guest performers and speakers, Canoe Families, and Water Blessing. Bring your water from your area, drums, rattles, and signs!
PLEASE NOTE: this is a land-based celebration with no canoes or kayaks.
Driving Directions from the north
1) Merge onto I-5 S.
2) Take EXIT 163A toward W Seattle Br/Columbian Way/W Seattle Br N.
3) Merge onto W Seattle Bridge W toward Spokane St N.
4) Take the Harbor Ave/Avalon Way exit.
5) Turn right onto Harbor Ave SW.
6) 1222 HARBOR AVE SW is on the right.