YWCA Toronto Solidarity Statement with Wet’suwet’en Peoples
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"Indigenous self-determination is a fundamental right and principle of international law."
February 21, 2020
In a time of both reconciliation and climate crisis, YWCA Toronto expresses solidarity with the Wet’suwet’en Peoples and their hereditary chiefs in exercising the right to self-determination and self-government. We condemn the deployment of militarized police officers to forcibly remove Indigenous Peoples and allies from unceded Wet’suwet’en lands. Meaningful consent should be sought from Indigenous nations about infrastructure projects that will have intergenerational human and environmental consequences.
Indigenous self-determination is a fundamental right and principle of international law. We urge the Government of Canada to commit to truth and reconciliation and to uphold the obligations laid out by the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP). UNDRIP Article 10 condemns forced removal of Indigenous Peoples from their land. The right of Indigenous Peoples to self-determination should not be undermined because it is economically expedient to do so.
In order to peacefully coexist and advance reconciliation between Indigenous Peoples and settlers in Canada, we call on all levels of government to follow and practice the principles of UNDRIP as they relate to Wet’suwet’en Peoples and their governments, specifically the right to self-determination; the right to free, prior and informed consent to any decisions made about land; and, the right to their traditional lands, territories and resources.
About YWCA Toronto
YWCA Toronto operates on the traditional territory of the Huron-Wendat and Petun First Nations, the Seneca, and the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation. We are grateful to work on this territory as we strive to build a more equitable and just city for women, girls, and gender-diverse communities.