by Cosanna Preston
June 19, 2007
Imagine a community with no running water, where temperatures bottom-out below minus 40 degrees Celsius and the closest bathroom is an outhouse across the yard, through knee-deep snow. Imagine a community where a single 900-foot house is home to three generations with hammocks, couches, and cushions as make-shift beds; where tuberculosis lurks in the close-knit quarters and gas flares light up the windows, outpacing the morning sun. Imagine a community which sustained itself and its environment for hundreds of years but was swiftly destroyed and degraded in just four short years of oil development.
Now imagine that community in the praised ‘first-world’ country, Canada. This is the plight of the Lubicon Cree.
Despite the location of their traditional territory in Alberta, the richest province in the country, the Lubicon Cree have been sentenced to a life of tragedy. Since the 1930s they have struggled to settle their land claim but today over 70 years later they remain without a reserve—shunned by both the provincial and federal government—and left to fight for their very existence… read full article