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Interview with Vanessa Gray of the Aamjiwaang First Nation

Indigenous youth stand up to pipelines from Aamjiwnaang to Wet'suwet'en

by Aaron Lakoff

Vanessa Gray (sitting, right) gives a workshop with other Aamjiwnaang activists on Enbridge's Line 9. Photo: Aaron Lakoff
Vanessa Gray (sitting, right) gives a workshop with other Aamjiwnaang activists on Enbridge's Line 9. Photo: Aaron Lakoff

Vanessa Gray is a youth activist from the Aamjiwnaang First Nations reserve near Sarnia, in what is known as Ontario's "chemical valley". She was the main organizer of a delegation of youth from Aamjiwnaang and the Six Nations reserve who travelled out west for the Tar Sands Healing Walk and the 4th annual Unis'tot'en Action Camp.

In this interview, recorded at the Unis'tot'en camp, she speaks about her solidarity with the Wet'suwet'en people, and the importance of combatting pipelines, specifically with Enbridge's Line 9 reversal proposal, which would bring tar sands dirty bitumen oil directly through her reserve.

In her own words, "I think people need to be uncomfortable. For me, life would be easier if I was quiet. It would be more comfortable if I didn't speak out against these huge companies. But change doesn't happen when you're comfortable. You have to make yourself uncomfortable, step out of your safety boundaries, and push others to do the same thing".

For more information:

swampline9.tumblr.com

www.unistotencamp.com

aaron.resist.ca

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Aaron (Aaron Lakoff)
Montreal
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