“They have proven [that] through their harassment of my people to support Coastal GasLink in invading our territories.” Wet’suwet’en people have retained their legal traditions and continue to govern themselves through the Bahtlats (feast hall), where decisions are ratified and clan business is conducted. The organization has written lengthy reports highlighting alleged Mountie abuse in northern B.C. The RCMP was created to control Indigenous people. CGL has also retained two private security firms that track Indigenous people’s movements. The RCMP was created to control Indigenous people. RCMP created to control Indigenous people The RCMP as … Can that relationship be reset? Conventional Canadian mythology maintains that the RCMP were created to protect Indigenous people from marauding Americans at Cypress Hills. At the time the suit was filed, a spokesperson for Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale refused to comment on a case before the courts. Land defenders such as Freda Huson have been identified in RCMP intelligence reports as “aboriginal extremists”. WATCH: Parachute policing — how Mounties serve communities across Canada. The RCMP were prepared to arrest children and grandparents: “No exception, everyone will be arrested in the injunction area,” a document reads. Mounties forced Indigenous people, including Inuit, onto reserves, and removed Indigenous children from their homes to send them to residential schools. In 2008, Marge Hudson was sent north to Bloodvein First Nation in Manitoba to investigate allegations that one of her RCMP colleagues had sexually assaulted a teen girl. One major media noting the long terrible history of the RCMP vis-à-vis First Nations asked, “The RCMP was created to control Indigenous people. Can that relationship be reset? The documents also show close collaboration between the RCMP and TC Energy: police officers attended company planning sessions and daily “tailgate” meetings, and were privy to CGL’s legal strategy. The documents show that ahead of the raid, the RCMP deployed an array of surveillance, including heavily armed police patrols, a jet boat, helicopter, drone technology, heat-sensing cameras and close monitoring of key land defenders’ movements and social media postings. Office of Correctional Investigator Annual Report Feb 18, 2020. As Jocelyn Thorpe, a history and women and gender studies professor at the University of Manitoba, explains, the Mounties were created for a specific purpose: to assert sovereignty over Indigenous people and their lands. On 7 January, RCMP officers – dressed in military-green fatigues and armed with assault rifles – descended on the checkpoint, dismantling the gate and arresting 14 people. History books, commissions, inquiries and public apologies reveal what happened next: Indigenous people who resisted were starved onto reserves. Instead, read the “heart-wrenching and devastating” passages that led to the recommendations. The camp is one of several instances where Indigenous people in British Columbia have reinhabited ancestral territory that falls outside of demarcated reservations, in what they refer to as “reoccupation”. An RCMP spokesperson declined to comment on the specific content of the documents, saying they were merely carrying out a December 2018 injunction against people who interfere with the CGL pipeline. Notes from strategy session for raid on Wet’suwet’en nation’s ancestral lands show commanders argued for ‘lethal overwatch’, Jaskiran Dhillon in Wet’suwet’en territory and “What I’ve witnessed over the last year is not only violent oppression by RCMP and the state on 7 January, but the continuing occupation of our territories and surveillance of our people and camp by CIRG,” she said. © 2020 Guardian News & Media Limited or its affiliated companies. Benjamin Neufeldt, the Mountie under investigation, pleaded guilty to two sex-related charges: for asking the teenager to touch him sexually and for bringing her to his home while he was on duty and trying to sexually assault her. Read about the families desperate to ensure their loved one’s safety who were dismissed by the people who were supposed to help them; read about the lingering trauma caused by some northern Mounties’ relationships with Inuit people; read about young girls, like the teenage victim of a sexual assault who was asked by an officer if she was “turned on” during the alleged assault. Can that relationship be reset? 29. The Wet’suwet’en nation have lived on their territories in what is now British Columbia for thousands of years. Motörhead -- Ace Of Spades Album, Bellator: Mma Onslaught Roster, Travis Kelce Draft Year, Home Essentials Company, The pipeline would run directly beneath the Morice River, a river system several municipalities rely on. Mounties forced Indigenous people, including Inuit, onto reserves, and … After all, change doesn’t happen overnight. True enough. “They’re really important, but so many people shelve recommendations,” she says. Mounties forced Indigenous people, including Inuit, onto reserves, and … WATCH: Tamra Keepness one of many missing Indigenous girls listed in class action lawsuit against RCMP. Want to discuss? #331 The RCMP Exists to Control Indigenous People The history of policing back to John A. Macdonald, the killing of Dudley George at Ipperwash in 1995, and its impact on two Indigenous journalists June 29, 2020 “In our experience, since first contact, RCMP have been created by the federal government to dispossess Indigenous peoples of their lands,” Huson said. Canada’s first prime minister, Sir John A. Macdonald, got the idea for the Mounties from the Royal Irish Constabulary, a paramilitary police force the British created to keep the Irish under control. on: December 20, 2019. ‘Statues are not history’ — considering the removal of Sir John A. Macdonald. Canadian police were prepared to shoot Indigenous land defenders blockading construction of a natural gas pipeline in northern British Columbia, according to documents seen by the Guardian. save. In a 1997 ruling, the supreme court of Canada determined that aboriginal land ownership had never been given up across the Wet’suwet’en’s 22,000 km sq of territory. “It’s been going on forever and it’s going to continue going on forever because, quite frankly, they don’t really care,” she says. And mistrust of the RCMP — a force created to control Indigenous people — runs deep in those communities. It’s hard not to. READ MORE: What exists now is systemic disregard and antipathy, said Anthony Merchant, a lawyer with Merchant Law, which is representing plaintiffs in a proposed $600-million class action against the RCMP and the federal government over their handling of MMIWG investigations. And then, earlier this month, the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls inquiry released its final report, blunt in its assessment of the famous force: “The RCMP have not proven to Canada that they are capable of holding themselves to account.”, The Mountie response to the MMIWG report has been to acknowledge reconciliation “is not a single event or action,” to highlight training initiatives — including a “Cultural Awareness and Humility course” currently in the works — and to say it continues to study the report and will give “careful consideration to change.”. … share. He was responding to … in 2019. Mounties forced Indigenous people, including Inuit, onto reserves, and removed Indigenous children from their homes to send them to residential schools. “If an Indigenous family contacted the police and indicated their 16- or 26-year-old daughter, sister, niece had not come home as expected or was missing, the almost invariable reply was ‘perhaps she’s partying,’ ‘is she with her boyfriend’ or anything to avoid undertaking an investigation,” Merchant said in a statement. It’s a simple question with a complicated answer. Archived. Also in 2016, the RCMP arrested Inuit and Innu people blocking the Muskrat Falls hydroelectric project in Labrador, and were revealed to have launched a cross-Canada surveillance operation entitled “Project Sitka” just a few years earlier in order to build profiles of individuals and to monitor all forms of Indigenous dissent, including completely legal calls for a National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered … The job of the Mounties “effectively, was to clear the plains, the Prairies, of Indigenous people,” he says. Posted by 1 year ago. Why ‘genocide’ was used in the MMIWG report. Macdonald envisioned his own Royal Irish Constabulary, says Steve Hewitt, a senior history lecturer at the University of Birmingham and author of three books about the RCMP’s history — except instead of the Irish, they would control the Indigenous people already living on the land. He did, however, highlight RCMP Commissioner Brenda Lucki’s 2018 apology to families of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls, in which she promised the force would do better. There was no coast-to-coast railway yet, and the ink was barely dry on Canada’s purchase of Western Canada from the Hudson’s Bay Company, an acquisition that paved the way for western settlement. A spokesperson for the Manitoba RCMP said it wasn’t aware of Hudson’s allegations. One of its recommendations was the decolonization of the justice system. The RCMP’s suppression of Indigenous dissent against resource extraction is rooted in its founding as a paramilitary entity 150 years ago. Days later, Chantel Moore, an Indigenous woman from B.C., was shot dead by police in Edmundston, N.B. Police records seen by the Guardian include transcripts from police strategy sessions, reports filed after the raid and audio and video files. … The RCMP was modelled after a British police force created to control Irish people. The Catholic community saw the constabulary as a Protestant force, biased against Catholics. A year prior, the federal government passed an Order-in-Council prohibiting Mountiesfrom unionizing under threat of “instant dismissal.” So the government … One of the Gidimt’en land protectors, Molly Wickham (Sleydo’), from the clan’s Grizzly House, described the CIRG detachment in her people’s territory as a violation of “free, prior and informed consent” between a settler state and Indigenous people -- a principle enshrined in the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People. The RCMP, known around the globe as benign "Mounties," commemorated early beginnings this summer, and identified the establishment of friendly relations with Native people … #331 The RCMP Exists to Control Indigenous People The history of policing back to John A. Macdonald, the killing of Dudley George at Ipperwash in 1995, and its impact on two Indigenous journalists June 29, 2020 29. Notes from a strategy session for a militarized raid on ancestral lands of the Wet’suwet’en nation show that commanders of Canada’s national police force, the Royal … All rights reserved. The RCMP was created to control Indigenous people. hide. Drones and helicopters often circle overhead. READ MORE: The RCMP was created to control Indigenous people. Another makes reference to possible child apprehension by social services – a troubling disclosure given the violent history of residential schooling in Canada and the disproportionate number of Indigenous children currently in the child welfare system. Can that relationship be reset? The statement of claim is rife with such allegations: Diane BigEagle says that in more than 50 meetings with the RCMP about the disappearance of her daughter, Danita Faith BigEagle — who vanished in Saskatchewan in 2007 and is presumed dead — she felt the officers didn’t listen, didn’t write down any notes and never gave Danita’s case “meaningful attention.” Jennifer Catcheway disappeared the next year in Manitoba. Please read our Commenting Policy first. Despite the onset of winter, Wet’suwet’en land defenders remain at the camps to protect their lands and waters. Can that relationship be reset? The allegations in the proposed class action have not been proven in court. Will Parrish, Fri 20 Dec 2019 05.30 EST Now, they watch us when we travel to pick berries. They have never signed treaties or sold their land to Canada. Can that relationship be reset? WATCH: Can a Mountie be expected to fix the Mounties? Even if it’s a “tainted image,” Hewitt says, “the symbol is so powerful.”, Read Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 and Part 4 of our January 2019 series on the force’s “culture of dysfunction.”. The RCMP was created to control Indigenous people. save. WATCH: Is it time to start fresh with the RCMP? The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP; ... a paramilitary police force the British created to keep the Irish under control. WATCH: How the Mountie image can affect its ability to police, It sends a strong message for RCMP commissioner Brenda Lucki to appear before the inquiry and to talk about policy changes, Wahpasiw says — “but how is the message getting from those people at the top of a national organization into the communities with detachments with very few people in remote locations?”. ... local Indigenous peoples were hired by the RCMP as special constables and were employed as guides and to obtain and care for sled dog teams. The checkpoint lies 22km east of a camp operated by a house group of the Wet’suwet’en called the Unist’ot’en, which has been at the center of the struggle against the pipeline. “It is what they’ve always done. She likens it to attending a workshop: OK, you learned something, but how are you actually going to put what you learned into action? who were fighting against the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion on their territory. Problems with RCMP long predate Lucki’s appointment. Can a Mountie be expected to fix the Mounties? It is no coincidence that when Indigenous people resist, it is the Mounties called into action, Thorpe says. Hereditary chiefs are responsible for the health and sustainability of their house group territories, and Wet’suwet’en law prohibits trespass on the territory of other the house groups. Star Wars Identities Shop, The RCMP were prepared to arrest children and grandparents: “No exception, everyone will be arrested in the injunction area,” a document reads. And yet, it already feels like more of the same, Hudson says. The pipeline would run from the Dawson Creek area of northern British Columbia to a facility near Kitimat on the Pacific coast. Much of our society today continues to reinforce this power dynamic. Then quickly came two more. “The response by the police is generally one of denial of the policing abuses taking place, claiming that there are just a number of bad apples on the police force, not a systemic issue, not a structural issue,” Deif told the inquiry. “They have proven [that] through their harassment of my people to support Coastal GasLink in invading our territories.”. One document noted that the Wet’suwet’en possessed “firearms for hunting/sustenance” but police intelligence indicated that there was “no single threat indicating that [land defenders] will use firearms”. As construction crews dynamite the land in preparation for laying pipe, and RCMP and private security forces patrol the territory, they trap for food and build new cabins. Ontario planning to implement provincewide lockdown, including school closures: sources, Iran sentences ‘Zombie Angelina Jolie’ to 10 years in jail for photos, U.S. investigating 5 allergic reactions to Pfizer coronavirus vaccine, Over half a million Canadians have now been infected with the coronavirus, Video of arrest at Calgary community rink results in accusations of police ‘going overboard’, Coronavirus: Many flock to malls as Hamilton set to enter lockdown Monday, Moderna COVID-19 vaccine doses distributed to U.S. Since the January raid, an RCMP detachment known as the Community Industry Safety Office has maintained a large presence in an effort to forestall any resistance to pipeline construction. Like most Indigenous people in British Columbia, the Wet’suwet’en have never relinquished their land to the Canadian government by treaty, land sale or surrender. Can a Mountie be expected to fix the Mounties? Correction: This piece has been updated to reflect that Anthony Merchant, not Nadine Covill, provided a statement from Merchant Law. “In our experience, since first contact, RCMP have been created by the federal government to dispossess Indigenous peoples of their lands. To clarify, it describes the deployment of an officer who is prepared to use lethal force, who may or may not be positioned as a sniper. Can that relationship be reset? Archived. share. They were employed this way, but had many other original purpose Can that relationship be reset?” Can that relationship be reset? The RCMP commanders also instructed officers to “use as much violence toward the gate as you want” ahead of the operation to remove a roadblock which had been erected by Wet’suwet’en people to control access to their territories and stop construction of the proposed 670km (416-mile) Coastal GasLink pipeline (CGL). It was disbanded as part of the Northern Ireland peace process, Hewitt says: “a new police force for a new era of peace.” Hewitt makes the comparison again two centuries later because the Irish force was disbanded as a matter of trust. Close. Hewitt doesn’t see Canada disbanding the Mounties a la Northern Ireland. Unist’ot’en spokesperson Freda Huson (Howilhkat) said that the RCMP’s militarized posture during the raid was consistent with a long history of colonial violence. “We also took into consideration the unpredictable nature of what we could face in the remote area, and so we moved additional police resources including members of the tactical and emergency response teams to provide support.”. And mistrust of the RCMP — a force created to control Indigenous people — runs deep in those communities. An earlier version described “lethal overwatch” as “a term for deploying snipers”. An earlier version also included the quote “sterilizing the site” from an RCMP record. CGL has begun road-building and clear-cutting on the right-of-way, and the company intends to start construction in early-2020. The revelations come as the Wet’suwet’en camps brace for a provincial supreme court ruling on an injunction applied for by the pipeline builder TC Energy (formerly TransCanada), which seeks to permanently restrict the Wet’suwet’en from blocking access to pipeline work sites. “During the planning for the enforcement of the court-ordered injunction, the RCMP took the remote location of the Morice River Bridge into account and ensured that enough police officers were present in the area to keep the peace,” the spokesperson said. The MMIWG report tells similar stories underscored by why people continue to see the force’s responses as inadequate — too focused on the “bad apples” rather than the structural issues. Last modified on Mon 30 Dec 2019 06.40 EST. “All of that is not an ordinary police force.”. Her family says they, too, were brushed aside, told their daughter was probably off drunk. chess prodigy relates to popularity of ‘The Queen’s Gambit’. She says a supervisor called her into the Winnipeg office and told her she had better go — “you know what we want, eh?”. - National | Globalnews.ca The RCMP was modelled after a British police force created to control Irish … RCMP officers had no qualms about moving in to arrest Indigenous people defending Wet’suwet’en territory against a natural gas pipeline in northern B.C. FALSE. In a separate document, an RCMP officer states that arrests would be necessary for “sterilizing [the] site”. According to the RCMP spokesperson, the police detachment will remain in place in Wet’suwet’en lands “as long as deemed necessary”. Armed RCMP officers can be seen patrolling the area, and three police trailers are tucked away in the woods alongside the access road. And mistrust of the RCMP — a force created to control Indigenous people — runs deep in those communities. “Ultimately, they were there to displace Indigenous people, to move them onto reserves whether they were willing to go or not.”, WATCH: Why ‘the RCMP needs to be… blown up’. Established in 1873 under Prime Minister Sir John … Although the North-West Mounted Police didn’t become the RCMP proper until it absorbed the Dominion Police in 1920, its paramilitary origins are still highly visible in everything from its training depot to how it organizes its officers into troops, right down to the horse and the uniform, Hewitt says. The Unist’ot’en, the People of the Headwaters, belong to the Gilseyhu clan. The RCMP was created to control Indigenous people. a militarized raid on ancestral lands of the Wet’suwet’en, a term for deploying an officer who is prepared to use lethal force, the Wet’suwet’en have never relinquished their land to the Canadian government, disproportionate number of Indigenous children, Indigenous people fighting the proposed Trans Mountain tar sands pipeline, rooted in its founding as a paramilitary entity 150 years ago. #331 The RCMP Exists to Control Indigenous People The history of policing back to John A. Macdonald, the killing of Dudley George at Ipperwash in 1995, and its impact on two Indigenous journalists June 29, 2020 A spokesperson for the Indigenous community in the region said that the actions of the RCMP at the pipeline protest resembled that of colonial violence. Just go out and do it.”. “But if the whole system is based on this idea that some people matter more than others, there’s only so much that can be done.”. The 2015 Anti-Terrorism Act, Bill C-51, sanctions the criminalization of Indigenous environmentalists by enhancing surveillance and legal powers against any potential interference with Canada’s “critical infrastructure” or “territorial integrity”. The RCMP was created to control Indigenous people. In the late 1800s, the RCMP (formerly the Northwest Mounted Police) carried out surveillance, violent displacement and relocation of Indigenous peoples onto reserves, and the forcible removal of Indigenous children from their families in order to place them in residential schools. The implication of that meeting was clear, says Hudson, who is from Berens River First Nation: she believed he wanted her to solve the case by clearing the Mountie of any wrongdoing. They harass us and profile us under the guise of ‘public safety’.”. Hospitals, Woman behind ‘Zombie Angelina Jolie’ sentenced to 10 years in Iranian prison, Tam calls on provinces to impose tougher rules now, Merlo-Davidson sexual harassment settlement, $220M and counting — The cost of the RCMP’s ‘culture of dysfunction’, ‘Statues are not history’ — considering the removal of Sir John A. Macdonald, Why ‘genocide’ was used in the MMIWG report. They were fine with arresting Indigenous protesters last week in Kamloops, B.C. Jan. 21, 2020 – (Toronto Star) The same urgent calls to action are raised in the final reports of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls (MMIWG), as well as two recent parliamentary committee studies on Indigenous peoples in the criminal justice system. “Sometimes, the way we talk about history is as if history really is in the past,” she says. Merchant, not Nadine Covill, provided a statement from Merchant Law Merchant! 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