Water Protectors Shut Down Wells Fargo Bank to Demand Divestment from Dakota Access Pipeline

Right now, a group of Native and non-Native water protectors who have been living at the encampments at Standing Rock are using their bodies to shut down the Wells Fargo branch at 2600 Franklin Avenue South. We will not allow Wells Fargo to continue with business as usual in our communities while profiting off their investment in the Dakota Access
pipeline project.

The Franklin Avenue corridor is an area rich with the history of Native American struggle. For decades, Native people have been displaced from their ancestral homelands and driven from their reservations, and have started new lives on Franklin Avenue. The American Indian Movement began on Franklin Avenue in the late 1960s, and continues to maintain a strong presence in the diverse Native community centered around Little Earth of United Tribes, the country’s largest urban concentration of Native people. Today, Wells Fargo’s lending practices continue to displace and systematically oppress people of color and Indigenous people in Franklin Avenue neighborhoods through foreclosure and gentrification.

Today’s action at Wells Fargo draws on the legacy of AIM and other Native liberation movements, and on centuries of untold Indigenous resistance to colonization, genocide, and oppression at the hands of the US government and the corporations that control it. We will continue to shut down Wells Fargo banks until they acknowledge the human rights
violations caused by the Dakota Access pipeline project and withdraw their loans. We call on people of all Nations to close their accounts at Wells Fargo and move their money.

This action is one of over a dozen in the Twin Cities today, and hundreds across the globe, to kick off the international month of action called for by a coalition of grassroots Native groups working on the ground at Standing Rock. As the Obama Administration allows human rights violations by North Dakota’s local and state law enforcement to
escalate, it is up to the people to cut off the project’s funding to protect our sacred waters, our Mother Earth, and future generations. Mni Wiconi, Water is Life.

Charlie Thayer says, “Today we stand strongly in solidarity with our relatives fighting against the Dakota Access pipeline in North Dakota and the proposed Line 3 pipeline here in Minnesota. This is a movement for the water and future generations. Wells Fargo currently has investment ties to several pipeline projects being proposed through
Native lands, we ask all of the 500+ Indigenous nations throughout Turtle Island to divest in Wells Fargo and invest in creating sustainable communities to protect the interests of the next seven generations.”

Ozuya Cikala says, “I am a Oglala Lakota. Someone has to speak for the earth! if no one here , who will? I’m only one but I represent millions before me with the same love & compassion I have for water. Wells Fargo is a major investor in the Dakota Access Pipeline, which we are currently fighting to stop on the front lines in North Dakota and also in the courts. We as human beings need to speak for our mother earth and break dependency on fossil fuels, and move forward with renewable energy.”

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Contact: Charlie Thayer, oshki.migizi1@gmail.com, 612-390-6408
Nataanii Means, nataaniimeans@gmail.com, 928-245-6209

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