NHBP Tribal Council Issues a Call to Action to Support Standing Rock Indian Reservation
(Fulton, Mich.) - In a gesture of solidarity with the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe (SRST), the Nottawaseppi Huron Band of the Potawatomi (NHBP) is sending a delegation of tribal members who will be taking supplies and additional goods to support the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe (SRST) in North Dakota, who are currently protesting the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL).
NHBP’s action comes after months of protests at the Standing Rock Indian Reservation, where tribal nations have come together to lend support to SRST’s objections to the DAPL, which stem from the location of the pipeline on aboriginal lands and its route beneath fresh water sources.
The NHBP caravan will depart the Pine Creek Indian Reservation at 6 p.m. on Nov. 17 and return in the afternoon of Nov. 22. The group of nearly 40 participants will not only serve as Water Keepers but will also assist in labor intensive activities around the encampment.
“NHBP has given our blessing to individual tribal members who have visited the Standing Rock Indian Reservation,” said NHBP Tribal Secretary Christine Lanning. “But this is the first time that we’ve issued a call to action and actively sent a caravan of tribal members and supplies on behalf of our tribal nation.”
Given the proximity of the DAPL to the SRST Reservation, SRST asserts that the pipeline has, and will continue to, destroy SRST burial grounds and cultural resources located on the tribe’s aboriginal lands. One of the most pressing concerns is that the pipeline could rupture and contaminate drinking and irrigation water sources for the tribe. NHBP shares those concerns.
“We believe that the pipeline poses an unacceptable serious risk to Standing Rock’s waters as well as ancestral lands of cultural significance including burial grounds and sacred sites critical to their homeland,” said NHBP Tribal Chair Jamie Stuck. “Unfortunately, NHBP has first-hand experience dealing with the risks associated with oil-transporting pipelines. We are still dealing with the aftereffects of the tar sands oil discharged into the Kalamazoo River when the Enbridge Line 6b failed,” Stuck said. “That spill caused severe damage to the river and the natural resources it supports. Despite the significant restoration efforts that have occurred since that spill, we will continue to deal with the damage inflicted on our precious natural resources for many more generations. We do not want to see a similar tragedy occur anywhere on Mother Earth. We proudly stand with the Standing Rock Tribe as they work to protect the natural resources that are so vitally important to the sustainability of not only their Tribe, but all of the Great Plains Tribes and Nations who rely on these rivers as their main source of drinkable water.”
About The Nottawaseppi Huron Band of the Potawatomi There are nearly 1,400 Tribal Members. NHBP’s primary Indian Health and Bureau of Indians Affairs Service Area covers members in Allegan, Barry, Branch, Calhoun, Kalamazoo, Kent and Ottawa counties. The Tribe’s administrative office is located at the Pine Creek Indian Reservation in Athens Township, with a satellite office in Grand Rapids, Mich. to better serve Members. For more information visit: http://www.nhbpi.com