The Tyendinaga Support Committee is a group in Toronto working to gather support for the Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte (Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory) in their struggles for land and justice and against criminal prosecution. To get involved, to lend your support, or if you have any questions, please email: support.tmt (at) gmail.com
- CN construction destructive, land claim unresolved (Feb 20, 2010)
- A Night on Water Justice (Sept 12, 2009)
- Struggle Continues Against Armed Border Guards in Akwesasne (June 29, 2009)
- UPDATE: Seven Mohawks remain in prison after OPP assault (June 12, 2009)
- OPP Assault on Mohawks: Mohawk Women re-take Skyway Bridge (June 12, 2009)
- Tyendinaga Answers Akwesasne's Call (June 7, 2009)
- CN: Drop your racist lawsuit! (Apr 2, 2009)
- Amnesty International Open Letter (Nov 12, 2008)
- Warrants Issued: 30 Mohawks Facing Arrest (Nov 5, 2008)
- Crown Buys Fantino's Silence with Brant's Freedom (Sept 29, 2008)
- The OPP and Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory (Sept 29, 2008)
- 11th Hour Decision: Court of Appeal Throws Out Publication Ban Again (July 19, 2008)
- Press Conference Announcement (July 18, 2008)
- Shawn Brant Released from Custody! (June 27, 2008)
- Public Event - Ipperwash Inquiry: Lessons Unlearned? (June 17, 2008)
- Two Tyendinaga Mohawk Prisoners Released (June 5, 2008)
- CUPE Ontario Passes Resolution in Support of Tyendinaga (June 5, 2008)
- Update from Quinte Regional Detention Centre (May 28, 2008)
- More Charges Laid: Clampdown Intensifies (May 20, 2008)
- Punchclock Showcase No. 2: Shawn Brant is No Criminal (May 16-17, 2008)
- OPP Weaponry and Escalation:
Update on the Struggle for the Culbertson Tract (May 13, 2008)
- Shawn Brant's Arrest - Statement by Sue Collis, Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory (May 4, 2008)
- Tense Standoff Continues in Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory (April 27, 2008)
- Ontario Jails Five More First Nations People Involved in Land Struggles (April 27, 2008)
- Hollow Victory: Shawn Brant Acquitted of Threat Charges (April 18, 2008)
- Prosecution Seeks Minimum 12 Years of Federal Penitentiary Time (October 15, 2007)
- Shawn Brant Released from Custody (August 30, 2007)
- Protesters win another round in police battle (Belleville Intelligencer, October 9, 2009)
- School water issue heating up (Belleville Intelligencer, October 6, 2009)
- Shawn Brant gets five-month sentence (Belleville Intelligencer, Jul 22, 2009)
- Ontario bridge reopens after tense native-police standoff (Canwest News Service, June 12, 2009)
- Ontario bridge protest remains `volatile' (Canwest News Service, June 12, 2009)
- Aboriginal rail blockades justified, serve to raise awareness: lawyer (Canadian Press, Apr 7, 2009)
- Second Lawsuit Launched (Belleville Intelligencer, Dec 23, 2008)
- Mohawk residents file $74M lawsuit against band council, owner of operation (Belleville Intelligencer, Dec 16, 2008)
- Post office takes a flyer (Toronto Star, Nov 27, 2008)
- Police station delivery thwarted by protesters (Belleville Intelligencer, Oct 30, 2008)
- Mohawk protester Brant gets light penalty for blockades (CBC News, Sept 29, 2008)
- New Mohawk police building put on hold after protesters set up blockade (Belleville Intelligencer, Sept 24, 2008)
- No polls on reserve Oct. 14 (Belleville Intellgencer, Sept 23, 2008)
- Police Posing as Reporters Erodes Press Freedom, says CJFE (July 30, 2008)
- OPP forgets lessons of Ipperwash (Toronto Star, July 30, 2008)
- No progress made on Culbertson Tract (Belleville Intelligencer, July 26, 2008)
- Police chief sues OPP over firing (Brantford Expositor, July 25, 2008)
- Media Reports and Documents on Commissioner Fantino and OPP Wiretaps (July 2008)
- No compromise from Mohawks (Belleville Intelligencer, June 26, 2008)
- Kingston developer faces 45 days in jail (Napanee Guide, June 23, 2008)
- Police hoped to keep Brant behind bars: defence lawyer (Belleville Intelligencer, June 20, 2008)
- Report slams Fantino (Belleville Intelligencer, June 4, 2008)
February 20, 2010
CN construction destructive, land claim unresolved:
Tyendinaga Mohawks targeted
Tyendinaga Mohawks are reviewing their options after federal officials ordered the Ontario Provincial Police to move against organizers of the 3 year old occupation of Culbertson Tract Lands.
Last week, in an unprecedented move, the OPP laid charges against 3 individuals for the "unlawful use of land" after a trailer was moved onto lands adjacent to the quarry. It was stated by police, at that time, that the "indians do not have the right to be on the land because the government (federal) has told them that the land will never be returned."
The government's use of police in enforcing its land claim position comes on the heels of the Mohawk community stopping the construction of a $700 million CN thirdline project running between Ottawa and Toronto. On January 25th, the project was brought to a halt after it was revealed that CN Rail had intentionally disregarded the construction guidelines and environmental recommendations put in place by the Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) pertaining to the protection of water tributaries serving the First Nations community.
A report issued by the Department, dated February 8, 2010, identifies CN's construction deficiencies and characterizes their work as destructive to wildlife and fish habitat. It goes on to say that the failure of CN to comply with environmental recommendations have resulted in "spoil piles" or unearthed contaminates to directly enter the watershed after heavy rains and ice flows compromised the worksite in late January. The report goes on to state, "Based on DFO's observations during the site visit we also identified construction activities which could negatively impact fish and fish habitat. These included spoil piles and the construction staging area within the floodplain. This is not acceptable to DFO and is contrary to advice provided by our department."
At a community meeting held on February 11th, 2010, CN officials were put on the defensive over their handling of the situation. Frustration turned to anger when CN front people, seemingly oblivious to Tyendinagas drinking water crisis, offered employment opportunities instead of answers. One by one, community members rose and chastised CN for its disregard of the environment and the ease with which it is prepared to add to the burdens already faced by the Mohawk community.
One member spoke to a thunderous applause, "We are facing the imposition of the Harmonized Sales Tax (HST), we have unresolved land issues and members being arrested for being on the land, we have a federal government willing to contribute 400 million dollars to improve CN's bottom line, while refusing to pay 12 million to provide clean water to our children. I say no to CNs third line expansion project until we get results on the issues that are important to us."
As the meeting came to a close, it was put forward by Chief and Council that an independent biologist be hired to oversee the remediation of the CN work site in an effort to mitigate the harm and limit future impact.
The three men responsible for bringing environmental concerns forward against CN could not be charged because they prevented the company from continuing in activities that were in contravention of federal law.
They were, however, the only three men charged for the "unlawful use of land" relating to the Culbertson tract, and coincidentally, given conditions "Not to attend on any property owned by the Canadian National Railway except for the purposes of passing over the rail lines by road or highway."
According to Shawn Brant, one of the three men charged, "The most pressing issue facing our communities is the Harmonized Sales Tax (HST). It is an attack on our very right to exist, and failing to stop its implementation will certainly result in reduced incomes for our people, greater poverty, and a heightened justification for provincial agencies to remove children from our homes. CN should be a player in that struggle."
- Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory
February 20th, 2010