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The Daily Cardinal Est. 1892
Wednesday, April 17, 2024
Students are supporting protesters at Standing Rock Sioux Reservation by holding a drive until Wednesday to raise money and collect donations for them.

Students are supporting protesters at Standing Rock Sioux Reservation by holding a drive until Wednesday to raise money and collect donations for them.

UW-Madison students aid protesters at Standing Rock

Indigenous students at UW-Madison are assisting protesters at the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation in North Dakota by raising funds and donating items such as lanterns, sleeping bags and firewood.

Co-president of Wunk Sheek Faith, a member of the Stockbridge-Munsee Band of the Mohicans, has partnered with the American Indian Campus and Community Liaison to coordinate the donation drive.

“We have this initiative … to collect donations from the UW campus and community addressing the immediate needs of the people at the Sacred Stone Camp and in Cannonball, North Dakota who are the water protectors,” Faith said.

Faith hopes the donations will help sustain the fight at the construction sites. The Standing Rock Sioux reported that the pipeline violates treaties and land agreements the federal government issued to protect local indigenous people. The pipeline is also a potential threat to local water sources and ecosystems.

According to their website, the Dakota Access Pipeline is a multibillion-dollar oil transportation infrastructure project designed to span a stretch of around 1,200 miles from North Dakota to Illinois. The DAPL would carry approximately 500,000 barrels of crude oil per day across its length.

The pipeline’s construction prompted a large negative response from Native Americans and locals, and protests around the pipeline continue to grow in size.

“This is the largest gathering [of indigenous people] in over 150 years,” Faith said. “This is not just an indigenous student’s issue, this is everybody’s issue.”

Thursday protesters in the construction path were met with heavy police resistance. Police and private security forces used rubber bullets, grenades and long-range acoustic devices to disperse protesters, reportedly killing horses and injuring a number of protesters.

The donation drive, taking place in Bascom Hall, will last until Wednesday at noon when all items will be taken to the Standing Rock reservation. Faith hopes to raise $3,000 for larger items through their GoFundMe page.

“This isn’t something that just happened in one indigenous community,” Faith said. “It happens all the time, everywhere.”

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