Tsleil-Waututh Nation to host Salish Sea Summer Gathering against pipeline expansion

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      The Tsleil-Waututh Nation Sacred Trust is set to host a third annual event aimed at bringing together artists, politicians and members of the public in opposition to the proposed expansion of the Kinder Morgan pipeline.

      The Salish Sea Summer Gathering will take place Sunday (August 10) at Cates Park in North Vancouver.

      According to Tsleil-Waututh councillor Charlene Aleck, the purpose of the event, and of the First Nation’s Sacred Trust initiative, is to raise awareness of the proposed pipeline project.

      “Not telling people no, you don’t want the pipeline in your backyard…but just giving them facts so that they can make their decision,” Aleck told the Straight by phone.

      Musical acts include Chilliwack, Holly McNarland, and Vince Vaccaro, and a series of speakers will include Tsleil-Waututh Nation chief Maureen Thomas, Rueben George, Carleen Thomas, Burnaby mayor Derek Corrigan, and MP Kennedy Stewart.

      The event will also feature a salmon barbeque, children’s activities, a poetry stage, a community info fair, indigenous artisans, Coast Salish drummers and dancers, and a traditional canoe ceremony.

      Aleck noted that the tailings pond spill in northern B.C. this week could bring more attention to the issue of the proposed pipeline.

      “It’s real, I think, the more it gets to people’s backyards and to…what they believe in and what they love,” she said.

      “Going fishing—well, you can’t fish when the fish are rotten. Going canoeing when the water’s polluted and you might get sick. Things like that. It is all of our issue.”

      The event will take place from 12 to 8:30 p.m. Free shuttles will be offered every 20 minutes from the Commercial-Broadway SkyTrain station and from the Vancouver Aboriginal Friendship Centre.