Dear Chief Spence:
We are a group of organizations who support and embrace you in your struggle to seek justice and dignity for your community of Attawapiskat and First Nations communities from coast to coast to coast.
Your hunger strike of this last month has shown the determination of a great and caring leader. We have been inspired by your courageous action, as well as the growing Idle No More movement.
The path you have chosen is one that few have the courage to travel but is much needed in our era when those in power trample on the rights of many.
We remind the Government of Canada and Prime Minister Stephen Harper that when families need food, clean water, medicine, safe housing and schools it must not turn a blind eye but must take notice and act.
We emphasize that poverty must not be the norm for entire communities in Canada, where we regard our democratic ideals and values to serve as role models for the rest of the world.
We remind them that Indigenous peoples deserve respect and to be treated with dignity. This includes respect for treaty rights previous generations demanded and obtained a century ago or more. No legislation may override these rights.
We remind them that all shall be affected by the continued damage to the land and water, now and in generations to come.
Chief Spence, as we are united in our diversity, we acknowledge that there are as many paths to enlightenment as there are souls on earth.
May The Universe grant you strength to lead First Nations peoples and protect you so you may continue your struggle for as long as you are able.
We stand shoulder to shoulder with you, and with the Idle No More movement, and are encouraging our members and supporters to participate in the protests planned for
January 11 and beyond.
Wetaskiwin, Peace, Paix, Salaam, Shalom
Signed by – List of Organizations:
Muslims for Progressive Values (MPV) Ummah Canada
The Glebe Minyan Synagogue
Canadian Unitarians for Social Justice
Faith House Ottawa
The Toronto Unity Mosque
The Ottawa Raging Grannies
Independent Jewish Voices
The Canadian Council of Muslim Women (CCMW) Ottawa Chapter
cc: Prime Minister Stephen Harper
cc: Governor General David Johnston
cc: Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada, John Duncan