A unity round dance was held at Confederation College Friday afternoon as part of the Idle No More movement.
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THUNDER BAY -- As the prime minister met with the country’s First Nation leaders in Ottawa Friday, the Idle No More movement’s presence was felt in this city.
A unity round dance was held at Confederation College to bring awareness to the federal government’s Bill C-45, an omnibus budget bill that will remove several of Canada’s environmental protections.
The event drew a large crowd that included students of Dennis Franklin Cromarty High School.
Grade 12 student Davery Bottle and his classmates got a lecture at school about Bill C-45 and the Idle No More movement and how Bill C-45 will affect their treaty rights.
“Many of the students don’t know what’s happening. I think it’s pretty good our principal decided to come here as a school so we’d get an understanding of what’s happening right now,” he said.
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Bottle’s also worried what the implications of the bill could mean for his future and his family’s future.
“When I grew up I was fishing, but now that Bill C-45 is taking place, I fear that the future generation like my kids, my sister’s kids won’t be able to do the stuff I used to do as a youth,” he said.
Mike Ignace was also worried about what the bill will mean for the future.
“(The youth) are the ones that are going to be bringing their children into this world and they need that water. That’s why I’m here,” said the Lac Des Milles Lacs First Nation man.
“I have a daughter at home and that’s who I’m fighting for.”
One of the event’s organizers Erin Bottle said they’ll be holding unity round dances throughout the city in the coming weeks and all Thunder Bay residents are encouraged to participate.
The dances are meant to create awareness and encourage all Canadians to participate in Idle No More.
“We want you to dance with us,” she said. “We want you to be part of our movement as brother and sister allies and we want you to wake up to what is coming.”
“What is coming is the environmental destruction of water, earth and our air,” Bottle said.
“These are things money cannot replace.”
After the round dance at the college, the crowd continued on to the front door of city hall.
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