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Highway Solidarity

Support for the fight against shale gas

by Hillary Bain Lindsay

Pamphlets included information on the threat of fracking, police repression in New Brunswick, and what people can do to help.   Photo: Aube Giroux
Pamphlets included information on the threat of fracking, police repression in New Brunswick, and what people can do to help. Photo: Aube Giroux
Fracking threatens drinking water with chemical contamination.  Photo: Aube Giroux
Fracking threatens drinking water with chemical contamination. Photo: Aube Giroux

MILLBROOK FIRST NATION – "This is not just a native issue," says Liseanne Ross, who was handing out pamphlets on Highway 102 outside Truro, Nova Scotia today.  "Every person should be involved.  It affects us all."  

Ross was one of about 100 people who participated in the traffic slowdown in solidarity with the people of Elisipogtog/Rexton, New Brunswick who are resisting shale gas development.

Ross' sentiments seemed to be shared by many of the people driving cars and trucks down Highway 102 today.  Despite being held up in traffic due to the slowdown, many of the drivers took pamphlets, smiled, honked, waved, and gave a thumbs-up to protesters.  

"There were some obscenities," admits Ross, "But many, many more people said 'Thank-you for doing this.'"

Steve Marshall Sr, from Millbrook First Nation, was one of the people who organized the traffic slowdown after the RCMP invaded the shale gas blockade outside Rexton and arrested over 40 people yesterday.  

Marshall, a former Warrior Chief who has been working with the Warrior Society in Elsipogtog, hopes the action will not only educate people on fracking and what's happening in New Brunswick, but also "build solidarity among natives and non-natives…to inform non-native people that we're not out to fight with them.  We're here to protect them too.  Protect the water."  

Although Claudia Covaluciuc, from Indian Brook First Nation, was devastated by the news yesterday, she found today's action uplifting.  "I feel positive, strong.  I feel like we're doing the best we can.  We're fighters, we're warriors."

"We are hoping to have help from all nations," she says, also emphasizing that this is not a 'native issue.'  "Education, unity and reconciliation are key."


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