There are currently at least sixty people still facing serious criminal charges from the 2019 and 2020 raids on Wet’suwet’en territory and the solidarity movement known as Shut Down Canada. Dealing with criminal charges is often an isolating and scary experience, especially when the legal system intentionally tries to make people feel alone and powerless. We think a support campaign is the best way we can fight back against these forces and show the state that we will not allow our friends and comrades to be criminalized. If we can support one another now, then we can support one another in all the struggles to come.
More than avoiding repression, what matters is how we deal with it. We need to always be finding ways to show those targeted they are not alone — this makes it easier for them to get through it with strength and integrity. As people move through the justice system, displays of solidarity and practical support make a real difference in the outcome. We need to show that those who are brave and take risks will be supported if we want to be brave together again in the future and see our movements grow.
We want to provide a space where defendants can write about their experiences with repression and criminalization, statements of solidarity, and updates about the charges, which will be posted on our Updates section.
We want to help defendants to fund raise for their legal battles, where we provide links to different defendants and communities’ GoFundMe pages.
We want to help defendants feel more supported in the incredibly isolating process of state criminalization, and are offering a PO box where letters of support, postcards, and zines can be sent, which we we then forward to defendants.
And, finally, we want to create an email campaign to pressure for charges to be dropped or for prominent figures to publicly support charges being dropped. We have created a basic sample template for a (polite) email, and a list of talking points that defendants have given us, and compiled a list of emails for it to be sent to.
Please share this campaign on your various data-mining surveilance platforms and use the hashtag #BlockadeDefense