Council of Canadians chairperson Maude Barlow, Vice-Chairperson Leo Broderick, and Atlantic Regional Organizer Angela Giles traveled to New Brunswick yesterday to express solidarity with the ongoing Elsipogtog protests against seismic testing for fracking by Texas-based SWN Resources.
Barlow and the Council representatives visited the Rexton encampment and met with Chief Arren Sock, Warrior Chief John Levi and other members of Elsipogtog First Nation yesterday.
“We discussed future plans and assured them of our ongoing support for Elsipogtog’s continued resistance,” says Maude Barlow, National Chairperson for the Council of Canadians. “Our members and many other Canadians across the country are inspired by the brave stand the protectors and all anti-shale gas activists are making.”
“We support their demand for free, prior and informed consent for any projects that happen on unceded Mi’kmaq territory,” adds Barlow. “Premier Alward needs to stop protecting the interests of a foreign corporation and start protecting the people in the province and their water.”
“The Alward government is totally out of step with other Atlantic governments in its outright promotion of fracking. They can be sure this issue will be central to the next election,” says Angela Giles, Atlantic Regional Organizer with the Council of Canadians.
“We were appalled at the stories of police brutality,” says Leo Broderick, Vice Chairperson of the Council of Canadians. “We support them in their opposition to the further injunction SWN is seeking today.”
Barlow and the Council representatives visited the camp near Rexton where 50-60 people were still gathered and met with Lorraine Clair who suffered injuries when she was arrested by the RCMP her for praying along highway 126 in Kent County.
On Saturday, Barlow and Giles attended the Elsipogtog Benefit in Halifax where Barlow gave a short speech and presented a $1500 cheque from the Council of Canadians to help with supplies for the winter and for legal funds for the Mi'kmaq warriors who have been arrested for defending the land and water from fracking.