Construction of a new building on the Morice West Forest Service Road proceeded last week.

Wet’suwet’en construct additional lodge ahead of police roadblock at 27 kilometre

The building is located just ahead of a police roadblock on the Morice West Forest Service Road

Another structure built by those opposed to Coastal GasLink (CGL) development on Wet’suwet’en territory has popped up on the Morice West Forest Service Road.

The new lodge was assembled by members of the Wet’suwet’en and supporters just before the 27 kilometre point of Morice West Forest Service Road starting in the third week of January.

Hereditary Chief Dtsa’hyl (Adam Gagnon) said the construction came at the request of all hereditary chiefs.

“[They] wanted a lodge built out here so they could have their meetings out here as well as having a place for non-Indigenous supporters to come and just show their support,” he said.

The structure is located less then a kilometre before an RCMP police roadblock which was set up during the afternoon of Jan. 13.

READ MORE: Unist’ot’en Camp say RCMP have changed 27 kilometre roadblock rules

It’s not immediately clear whether the structure was built in response to the RCMP checkpoint, which the hereditary chiefs have repeatedly characterized as an exclusion zone and which they say is in violation of both Wet’suwet’en law and the constitutionally-protected rights of Indigenous people.

“The RCMP has been blocking us up about a half a kilometre from here and not allowing any of the non-Indigenous supporters to come and show their support so we just wanted to remedy that problem,” said Gagnon.

In a video posted to their social media Gagnon and Gidimt’en spokesperson Sleydo’ (Molly Wickham) encouraged supporters, both Indigenous and non-Indigenous, to come out to the territory and show their support.

“We want a space where people can come and show their support and their solidarity and where the RCMP aren’t going to be excluding people from being on the territory,” said Wickham.

“It’s really important that … we have a place where people can come and especially for the chiefs to come and meet where the action is happening.”

The Interior News has reached out to the RCMP for comment on whether it has plans to respond to the development or move its access control checkpoint ahead of the new building.

Wickham, however remained steadfast in her message.

“I encourage our own people, you know, come out here and don’t be afraid,” she said. “The RCMP don’t have the jurisdiction to stop us from moving through the territory and this is a space where everyone is welcome to be.”



trevor.hewitt@interior-news.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Northern Health preparing ‘for a changing situation’ in response to COVID-19

The health authority is taking a number of measures to free up hospital capacity where possible

Closures and cancellations in the Bulkley Valley due to COVID-19

Many places and businesses have closed or reduced their hours

Concerns raised over publicly discarded masks, gloves

Deputy mayor says behaviour is simply unacceptable in time of elevated public health crisis

Stikine MLA optimistic about COVID-19 recovery

Doug Donaldson says first step is to beat the pandemic then work out the economics

Canfor closes Houston and Plateau mills temporarily

Three-week closure in response to COVID-19 crisis

B.C. is seeing the highest rate of COVID-19 recovery in Canada, and there’s a few reasons why

British Columbia was one of the first to see rise in COVID-19 cases, and has also switched up testing

Earth Hour 2020 kicks off online Saturday night

Action moves online due to COVID-19

B.C. COVID-19 cases rise 92 to 884, one more death, 81 in care

Outbreak action underway in 12 long-term care homes

B.C. veterinarians want to smooth the fur of COVID-19-worried pet owners

Vets expect to continue giving your fur buddies the help they need while social distancing

B.C. VIEWS: Small businesses need our help

Just as integral in neighbourhoods in Vancouver and Surrey as they are in Prince George or Kelowna

‘Tremendous’ response from blood donors has supply keeping pace with demand

About 400,000 of Canada’s 37 million residents give blood on a regular basis

Morning world update: Cases surge past 600,000; positive news in Germany

Spain suffers its deadliest day as Germany considers April 20 to possibly loosen restrictions

Most Read