Jul 16, 2016 - Native American Youth Run to Nation’s Capital from North Dakota for Rezpect Our Water Campaign
Oceti Sakowin Youth & Allies aim to halt construction of Dakota Access Pipeline; to launch campaign into national spotlight; to hold rallies at the Pentagon and White House.
CANNON BALL, North Dakota: On July 15th, youth from the Oceti Sakowin Youth & Allies departed on a nearly 2,000 mile long run from North Dakota to Washington, D.C., in an attempt to stop the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline.
Twenty-six-year-old Bobbi Jean Three Legs, 13-year-old Anna Lee Yellowhammer and 30 Native American youth from the reservation launched the campaign to ask the Army Corps of Engineers to stop the issuance of a permit to construct the Dakota Access pipeline, which the youth group says threatens the health and safety of their community.
“We are running for our lives against the Dakota Access Pipeline because it’s right in our backyard,” Three Legs said. “Now is the time for the people to hear our voices that we are here and we will stand strong.”
The proposed 1,154 mile Dakota Access Pipeline would transport 570,000 barrels of crude oil per day across North Dakota, South Dakota, Iowa, and Illinois crossing over the Missouri River. From 2012 to 2013 alone, there were 300 oil pipeline breaks in the state of North Dakota alone, which caused destruction to the environment and polluted local drinking water.
In the few weeks since the launch of the Rezpect Our Water campaign, over 140,000 people have signed the petition and it’s been endorsed by influential public figures such as Leonardo DiCaprio, Shailene Woodley, Ezra Miller, Bill McKibben, and even members from other tribes.
“I’m running for my life, for our lives. For our water and our lands,” Joseph White Eyes, one of the event organizers from Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe said. “The 7th generation is here and it is time to uphold the prophecy and restore balance to our mother, the earth.”
For more information about “Run For Our Water” email firstname.lastname@example.org and visit rezpectourwater.com for more information on the campaign. To add your name to the petition, please visit change.org/RunForOurWater where donations can be made.
CONTACT: Kettie Jean
Press release by Victoria Humphreys