We, the multifaith Community of Living Traditions at Stony Point Center, a conference center of the Presbyterian Church USA, strongly support the Standing Rock Sioux Nation, as well as Native Americans from many different Nations, in their actions to oppose the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline and protect the well being of our country’s land and water.

Particularly in light of the pending injunctions of the Pipeline’s construction, we feel it is deeply inappropriate for construction of the pipeline to be proceeding, and we are grateful for the Standing Rock Sioux Nation for initiating action to prevent this injustice.

We understand their actions to be rooted in a sacred duty to protect the earth, in keeping with the values of the Community of Living Traditions: justice, peace, nonviolence, earth-consciousness and radical hospitality. We further understand that they are acting to protect the integrity of a key water source — the Missouri River, the longest river in North America, whose health impacts the well being of millions of people — and to protect historically significant burial and ceremonial sites, which preliminary construction has already damaged. We see both of these concerns as fundamentally justified. Further, we see the Pipeline as reflecting a dangerous addiction to fossil fuel that is destroying the climate and threatening all of creation. As citizens of the earth, and especially as residents of the Hudson River watershed, we are committed to the project of dismantling our society’s reliance on coal, oil, nuclear and gas industries, finding ways to produce clean and sustainable energy, and reducing our energy consumption to a level that is sustainable for the global community.

We request that all construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline be halted immediately pending the completion of a thorough review of these concerns. We further request that all personnel associated with the construction site be thoroughly instructed and trained in appropriate and nonviolent methods for interacting with protesters. In no circumstances should dogs, tear gas or other chemical agents, or any form of weaponry be used against the protesters. We request that the construction company, affiliated security personnel and any local authorities associated with the abuse of protesters in the past week issue a statement assuring the public that they will treat the protesters with respect and seek to avoid escalation and injury.

It is well past time that the people of the United States make a fundamental shift in how we interact with the indigenous Nations with whom we are sharing this land. Despite the horror of our history — which many religious institutions, including the PC-USA have recently acknowledged complicity in — it is not too late to make this change. We call on all sympathetic ears to hear the cries of the generations that are made manifest in this situation, and to participate in this change.

More information: Statement of Support by PC-USA   |   #NoDAPL   |   #DakotaAccessPipeline   |   #RezpectOurWater

How you can help:
(1) Donate to support the encampment and to help with legal expenses
(2) Get your organization to send a statement of support. Standing Rock Sioux tribe requests that statements of support be sent to: publicrelations@standingrock.org, as well as to the following decision-makers:
    * your Congressional Representative and Senator
    * Denis McDonough, Chief of Staff to the President: dmcos@who.eop.gov , (202) 456-3182
    * Jo-Ellen Darcy, Assistant Secretary of the Army Corp of engineers: joellen.darcy@us.army.mil , (703) 697-8986