People of Chico support Standing Rock


Chico Peace & Justice Center

Kayla Fitzgerald

Protests have continued at the Standing Rock Reservation in North Dakota, and the people of Chico are ready to support.

On Saturday, November 19, Chico local, Rain Aliza Scher, will begin her journey to the Standing Rock Reservation to support the multiple Indigenous Nations peacefully protesting.

The Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) is a 1,134-mile-long underground oil pipeline in the United States.

Protests began last spring when a construction proposal was released regarding the pipeline. With the construction, the new pipeline would run from western North Dakota to southern Illinois. It would cross underneath the Mississippi and Missouri rivers, and part of Lake Oahe, which is near the Standing Rock Reservation.

In September, when construction workers bulldozed what is considered to be a historic, sacred piece of land, the protests sparked again.

On October 27, word was released that authorities wanted to remove protesters because they were camping on private land. After a protester fired a gun, police took action by burning barricades and firing beanbags. This resulted in the arrest of 141 people that were released three days later.

In the days following, the event went viral on Facebook, with the page now having more than 720,000 likes and 1,660,000 views.

“Both natives and non-natives from the Chico area have traveled there already,” said Scher.

Chico has held several solidarity support demonstrations regarding this issue.

Protesters were lined up on the corners of 2nd and Wall Street on November 15.

On November 17, the Chico Peace and Justice Center hosted a potluck dinner in support of Chico’s newest traveler, Rain. Chico Food Not Bombs provided the meal, and also donated food to the cause.

“I’m going because I believe in tribal sovereignty, treaty rights, and protecting the rights of clean water,” said Scher.

This event prompted people to donate produce, bulk dry goods, and any other supplies to help those protesting.

“It was thrown together pretty quick. It came out of a discussion from Chico Food Not Bombs,” said Scher.

Attendees got to enjoy a vegan potluck dinner before sending Rain on her long, exciting journey.

“There is sacred land all over this continent. People can not only support at Standing Rock, but learn about your local history where you live.” said Scher.

Kayla Fitzgerald can be reached at [email protected] or @kaylafitz_20 on Twitter.