The Council of Canadians is helping to sponsor an Indigenous ultra-marathon runner to run 4,800 kilometres across the country to promote awareness that the Harper government has removed legislative protections for rivers and lakes in order to advance its agenda of pipelines, fracking, mining and extreme energy projects.
APTN recently reported, “Caribou Legs is known for trekking across Canada to raise awareness on water protection. He’s at it again. His next run will be from Vancouver to Ottawa to tell the federal government to protect Canada’s fresh water. But first, he led a fun run in his hometown of Yellowknife.”
To watch the 2-minute APTN report on that, click here. In that interview, Caribou Legs says, “This run is about educating, motivating, inspiring people to get up and fight against this current government and what they’re doing with the water and with the Navigational Waters Protection Act.” With the Harper government’s omnibus bill C-45 in 2012, legislative protections were removed from 99 per cent of waterways in this country – that’s tens of thousands of lakes and millions of rivers and waterways. He adds, “To see a life without caribou and fish, that’s what’s important for me, keeping that going, keeping that fight and movement going.”
His run will begin on Monday June 1 at 9 am with a “send off” gathering at the Vancouver Art Gallery (750 Hornby Street).
That gathering will open with a territorial welcome by Rachelle George of the Skwxwu7mesh and Tsleil-Waututh First Nations. The speakers at that event along with Caribou Legs will include Dr. Lee Brown, Cherokee Nation, University of British Columbia Aboriginal Health, Brandon Gabriel, Kwantlen First Nation, Sheila Muxlow, Chilliwack resident and water advocate, and John Hill, a Vancouver activist and Caribou Leg’s coach.
You can read more about the June 1 send off at the Facebook event page for it here.
By Monday evening, Caribou Legs will have arrived in Chilliwack. There, the Council of Canadians Chilliwack chapter has organized a traditional welcoming and a potluck dinner with him (at either the Sto:lo Resource Centre or the Soowahlie Community Hall, to be confirmed today).
Caribou Legs will then continue his journey through communities including Kamloops, Salmon Arm, Golden, Calgary, Moose Jaw, Regina, Winnipeg, Thunder Bay and Sudbury. Caribou Legs is expected to arrive at Parliament Hill in Ottawa on August 21 where he will be greeted by Council of Canadians staff and supporters.
To sign a petition that supports the main message of his run, click here.