Heavy, wet snow could not deter 35 people from standing in front of the Rhode Island State House Friday morning in solidarity with the Native Nations March in Washington DC. “We Rise Up with the Indigenous of Rhode Island, and the Standing Rock Sioux, as they march in Washington in defense of their sovereignty and the protection of land and water,” wrote the organizers, No DAPL RI.
The event was supposed to conclude with a march from the State House to Providence City Hall, where there is an ordinance stuck in committee that would require Providence to divest from fossil fuels. However, the exact language No DAPL RI wanted to deliver to the Providence City Council was still in the process of being worked out.
On their Facebook event page No DAPL RI wrote:
“To our elected officials in Providence, we add this demand: divest the City of Providence’s funds from banks that fund the Dakota Access Pipeline and other fossil fuel infrastructure,” wrote the organizers, “Investing with these banks means the City consents to the desecration of sacred Indigenous burial grounds and police brutality toward Indigenous people. We want our City to sever its ties with these banks that fund anti-Indigenous violence and environmental degradation with fossil fuel projects.”
Randy Noka and Bella Noka of the Narragansett Indian Tribe spoke to those gathered.