Camp set up next to where premiers are meeting in Saskatoon
Group protesting inaction on climate change, pipelines and other social issues
An encampment protesting against climate change inaction, pipelines and other issues will greet Canada's premiers when they arrive in Saskatoon.
Teepees have been set up in Kiwanis Park next to the Delta Bessborough Hotel, where the Council of the Federation conference runs until Thursday, as part of the protest.
Nancy Greyeyes is with Climate Justice Saskatoon, one of a number of groups behind the Grassroots Voices camp.
Greyeyes said they want the premiers to take action on climate change and to stop building more pipelines.
"We welcome the premiers who come to town," Greyeyes said. "Come sit with us by the river. It's really beautiful here and we have some food and we'll share."
Greyeyes said there will be speakers and entertainment every night until Thursday.
Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe said health care, reducing trade barriers and increasing economic competitiveness are all topics on his agenda.
But organizers of the camp say other issues should be at the top of the agenda.
Raidin Brailsford with Climate Justice Saskatoon said they have the encampment there to show opposition and to put pressure on politicians to take action on climate change.
"We are opposed to pipelines," Brailsford said. "We don't want Trans Mountain (pipeline) to go through. We recognize that they are going to damage Indigenous communities and it is not a great thing."
The group also wants to see concrete steps taken on the recent Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls report.
Greyeyes said everyone needs to think about their kids and future generations.
"That is the main focus here — the youth and our unborn," Greyeyes said. "Because in my teachings, you don't do anything without considering those next seven generations. And the way we are going now we are really not considering them."
She said the camp is more of an information event.
"I don't protest them having a meeting. But I need to protect all that I can for my grandchildren and for everyone's grandchildren. We need to think about them more than ourselves. More than the money we can have now. They are worth the effort."
Tuesday night's camp had a powwow, and speakers talking about climate change, along with entertainment.
Wednesday night, the group will hold a rally at 6 p.m. in front of The Bessborough to voice their concerns to the premiers followed by more speakers, food and entertainment in the park.
Brailsford said not everyone in the province agrees with Premier Scott Moe's stance on pipelines and a carbon tax.
"We have a very conservative premier leading this province. He's very much fighting carbon taxes and for pipelines. So we want the premiers to know there are people in Saskatchewan who oppose this."
Greyeyes said humans have caused the problems and it's up to us to clean up the mess we created.
"We all have children and we all have to think about them and figure out how can we do this and stop with that, 'It's too expensive mentality,'" she said.
"What are your kids not worth?" she asked. "How much? That is my question for people."